Friday, April 11, 2014

Inhabiting the Wasteland

Spending time this morning imagining what their world is like...flourishing in the wasteland. These imaginings go against and beyond the aesthetics of American nature, human-centered land ethics, and facile despair about the end of nature. Instead they confront us with the resilience of nature and nonhuman agency where these little creatures and their parents take advantage of new opportunities in the margins. Join me next Wednesday at Austin City Hall noon for my Lunchtime Lecture on "Resilient Nature" for more on this morning's musings. 

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Birding in a Natural Wasteland

If you are in Texas tune in to the Texas Parks and Wildlife PBS show the week of April 6 to see a short piece on Hornsby Bend. We have worked on this story on and off for several years, so I am glad to see it finally get done. I don't expect a rush of visitors, but it is an unusual story for TPW since we are neither a park or preserve. As I say in the piece - we are "non-traditional habitat" which, of course, is marginal nature.

Follow the link to see the piece or tune in to PBS the week of April 6 to see the segment on the TPW show.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DV2g2LUFkx4

Heroic moments of marginal nature

A few recent photos from here around the treatment plant at Hornsby Bend




Friday, February 28, 2014

March 2014 CER Lunchtime Lecture

Urban Nature: The American City and Degraded Nature

In my first two lectures, I discussed the foundational myths of American Nature: wilderness and pastoral nature. In March, I will examine urban nature and the relationship between nature and cities in the American Mind. We are now predominately a country of urbanites who have only occasional contact with wilderness or pastoral nature. To compensate for this urban depravation, we have incorporated “green space” for nature into our cities –preserves, wildscapes, parks, and gardens - to allow for contact with officially sanctioned approximations of wild and pastoral nature in the urban landscape. The urban nature that lives outside of these green spaces (or “invasively” transgresses them) is a “degraded” type of nature which the writer John Tallmadge describes as “just too mixed up, chaotic, and confused to fit our established notions of beauty and value in nature. … Maybe it’s not really nature at all, not a real ecosystem, just a bunch of weeds and exotics mixed up with human junk.” Join me for the March Lunchtime Lecture, when I will explore the myth of American Urban Nature and assess whether it is really nature at all.

 Mar 19 Wednesday - NOON to 1pm at Austin City Hall, Boards and Commissions Room 1st Floor

• Center for Environmental Research Lunchtime Lecture by Kevin M. Anderson
• Urban Nature: The American City and Degraded Nature

Mar 25 Tuesday – NOON to 1pm at Waller Center, 625 East 10th Street [Between Red River and I-35]
• Center for Environmental Research Lunchtime Lecture by Kevin M. Anderson
• Urban Nature: The American City and Degraded Nature

Mar 26 Wednesday – NOON to 1pm at Dougherty Arts Center, 1110 Barton Springs Road
• Center for Environmental Research Lunchtime Lecture by Kevin M. Anderson
• Urban Nature: The American City and Degraded Nature

  click here to see more on the CER website

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Revised Lunchtime Lecture Schedule

I have had to change some dates of Lunchtime Lectures [especially at City Hall] so the revised schedule is below. There has been a good response to the first two lectures. Glad that people share my interests in ideas of nature.

Myths of American Nature – January to April
January 7 at Waller Center –Wilderness: The Myth of Pristine Nature
January 8 at Dougherty Arts Center – Wilderness: The Myth of Pristine Nature

January 14 at City Hall - Wilderness: The Myth of Pristine Nature

February 11 at Waller Center –Pastoral Nature: the Agrarian Myth of the Yeoman Farmer
February 12 at Dougherty Arts Center – Pastoral Nature: the Agrarian Myth of the Yeoman Farmer
February 19 at City Hall – Pastoral Nature: the Agrarian Myth of the Yeoman Farmer

March 19 at City Hall – Urban Nature: The American City and Degraded Nature
March 25 at Waller Center – Urban Nature: The American City and Degraded Nature
March 26 at Dougherty Arts Center – Urban Nature: The American City and Degraded Nature

April 8 at Waller Center –Resilient Nature: Wasteland and the New Ecology
April 9 at Dougherty Arts Center – Resilient Nature: Wasteland and the New Ecology
April 16 at City Hall – Resilient Nature: Wasteland and the New Ecology

Science and American Nature – May to August

May 13 at Waller Center – American Natural History and the Theory of Degenerate Nature
May 14 at Dougherty Arts Center – American Natural History and the Theory of Degenerate Nature
May 21 at City Hall - American Natural History and the Theory of Degenerate Nature

June 10 at Waller Center – Biology, Ecological Change, and Native Species
June 11 at Dougherty Arts Center – Biology, Ecological Change, and Native Species
June 18 at City Hall - Biology, Ecological Change, and Native Species

July 8 at Waller Center – Ecology, Ecosystem Services, and the Balance of Nature
July 9 at Dougherty Arts Center – Ecology, Ecosystem Services, and the Balance of Nature
July 16 at City Hall - Ecology, Ecosystem Services, and the Balance of Nature

August 6 at City Hall - Environmental Science, Sustainability, and Human Nature
August 12 at Waller Center – Environmental Science, Sustainability, and Human Nature
August 13 at Dougherty Arts Center – Environmental Science, Sustainability, and Human Nature

Management of American Nature – September to December

September 9 at Waller Center – Saving American Nature: Conservation vs. Preservation
September 10 at Dougherty Arts Center – Saving American Nature: Conservation vs. Preservation
September 17 at City Hall - Saving American Nature: Conservation vs. Preservation

October 7 at Waller Center – Farming with Nature: the Unsettling of America
October 8 at Dougherty Arts Center – Farming with Nature: the Unsettling of America
October 15 at City Hall - Farming with Nature: the Unsettling of America

November 12 at Dougherty Arts Center – Design with Nature: Ecological Cities and the Myth of Sustainability
November 13 at Waller Center – Design with Nature: Ecological Cities and the Myth of Sustainability
November 19 at City Hall – Design with Nature: Ecological Cities and the Myth of Sustainability

December 9 at Waller Center – The End of Nature: Prospective Ecology and the American Mind
December 10 at Dougherty Arts Center – The End of Nature: Prospective Ecology and the American Mind
December 17 at City Hall - The End of Nature: Prospective Ecology and the American Mind

click here to see the full schedule online at the CER website