Award-winning writer-conservationist-activist Terry Tempest Williams cast a quiet spell on members of the Wesleyan and greater Middletown communities during a reading and book-signing reception at Memorial Chapel on March 1, at the invitation of Wesleyan’s College of the Environment.
On Feb. 28, students in ENVS201/soph seminar greeted guest speaker Rachel Sayet, an anthropologist/educator from the Mohegan Tribe, who spoke about revitalizing traditional foodways in New England and beyond. ENVS201, taught by COE Director Barry Chernoff and assistant professor of environmental studies Helen Poulos, introduces students to critical methods for conducting research on environmental issues, as a primer for performing research in the ENVS major.
On February 22, the COE hosted a screening of the 2016 documentary short film Shash Jaa’: Bears Ears, followed by a Q&A with Navajo-Hopi filmmaker/director Angelo Baca. A post-showing reception featured a photo exhibit of the Bears Ears region by Fiona McLeod ’19. Shash Jaa’ details the efforts of the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition against the reduction of Utah’s Bears Ears National Monument by 85 percent after President Trump’s 2017 executive order. It is a continuation of the film Into America: The Ancestors’ Land, directed by Baca & Nadine Zacharias, which examined natural resource extraction in southeastern Utah.
This past January, Nethra Pullela ’20, Liz Atalig ’21, and Jackie Duckett ’20 joined E&ES Professor Suzanne O’Connell on a journey to the center of the earth–traveling to the International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) at Texas A&M University to collect data and samples for O’Connell’s “Where Was the Antarctic Oligocene Ice?” project, funded by the COE’s Faculty-Student Research Grant Program.
Associate Professor of Theater Marcela Oteiza’s research has just been published in the Journal of Theatre and Performance Design. The article includes text and photos from Wesleyan students who participated in the study abroad winter session 2018– including the photo above, by Jose Luis Sanchez. Street Theatre and the Scenographic Gaze: Santiago a Mil International Festival, January 2018, is available now.
Congrats to Assistant Professor of Religion and COE fellow Justine Quijada, whose new book, Buddhists, Shamans, and Soviets: Rituals of History in Post-Soviet Buryatia, will be published in March by Oxford University Press.
In an early review, Laurel Kendall, chair, division of anthropology at the American Museum of Natural History says, “In Justine Buck Quijada’s thoroughly engaging ethnography of contemporary Buryatia, a miraculously preserved Buddhist corpse counters the artificiality of Lenin’s ‘scientifically preserved’ remains and the body of a Russian Orthodox saint visits the local Cathedral where celebratory bells drown out the drum beats inaugurating a new urban center for shaman practice. Simultaneously inhabiting the chronotypes of multiple historic pasts-indigenous, Buddhist, Russian Orthodox, Soviet-the rituals and celebrations of Quijada’s subjects blur and blend and defy any attempt to effectively categorize them by religion, ethnicity, or nationality politics. The result is a provocative read for anyone interested in these subjects.” –Laurel Kendall, Chair, Division of Anthropology, American Museum of Natural History
Click here to read more about Justine’s work and to watch her presentation, “Is Animism Good to Think With?” from this year’s Where on Earth Are We Going seminar.