What Matters:
Documentary Photography and Social Change

David Elliot Cohen, Michael Watts, and Ed Kashi with Mark Gonnerman

Thursday, July 9, 2009 | 7:30pm | Annenberg Auditorium | Free and Open to All

Photo essays have proven their ability not only to document but actually change the course of human events. If that is the case, shouldn’t we be searching for the essential photo-essays of our time, the pictures that will spark public discourse and instigate the type of real-world reforms that engaged citizens in the past? What Matters, a new book edited by David Elliot Cohen, attempts to answer this question with eighteen important photo-essays by this generation’s preeminent photojournalists. These essays poignantly address the big issues of our time: climate change, oil addiction, the inequitable distribution of global wealth and other current problems. The book ends with “What You Can Do,” an appendix that offers hundreds of ways to be part of the solution to the compelling challenges we now face.
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Monday, 2 February, 2009
In anticipation of our 19 February program, “Tibet: Where Continents and Cultures Collide,” please visit China Green, a website with resources on environmental issues prepared by the Asia Society Center on U.S.-China Relations.

A Passion for Nature:
Exploring the Life of John Muir

Donald Worster and Richard White with Jon Christensen

Thursday, May 7, 2009 | 7:30–9:00pm | Kresge Auditorium | Free and Open to All

In Donald Worster's new biography, John Muir's "special self" is fully explored as is his extraordinary ability, then and now, to get others to see the sacred beauty of the natural world. A Passion for Nature is the most complete account of the great conservationist and founder of the Sierra Club ever written. Rich in detail and personal anecdote, it traces Muir from his boyhood in Scotland and frontier Wisconsin to his adult life in California right after the Civil War up to his death on the eve of World War I. It explores his marriage and family life, his relationship with his abusive father, his many friendships with the humble and famous (including Theodore Roosevelt and Ralph Waldo Emerson), and his role in founding the modern American conservation movement. Inspired by Muir's passion for the wilderness, Americans created a long and stunning list of national parks and wilderness areas, Yosemite most prominent among them. Yet the book also describes a Muir who was a successful fruit-grower, a talented scientist and world-traveler, a doting father and husband, a self-made man of wealth and political influence, and a man for whom mountaineering was "a pathway to revelation and worship."
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Your Body on the Line?

Julia Butterfly Hill with Rebecca Solnit

Monday, June 2, 2003 | 7:30 - 9:00 | Kresge Auditorium | Free and Open to All

In December 1997, Julia Butterfly Hill, then age 23, climbed up “Luna,” a thousand-year-old redwood in Humboldt County, California, and did not touch ground for two years. Her dangerous and inspiring action protected this ancient redwood and the trees around it. Would you put your body on the line for something you believe in? What might each of us do to protect and celebrate the wild world that is our home? Join us as Bay Area writer Rebecca Solnit discusses these and other questions with Julia Butterfly Hill.
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Nature’s Economy:
Population, Consumption, and Sustainability

Paul Ehrlich and Anne Ehrlich with Gretchen Daily

Thursday, January 20, 2005 | 7:30 - 9:00pm | Kresge Auditorium | Free and Open to All

Stanford conservation biologists Paul and Anne Ehrlich discuss three challenging global trends: increasing population, rising consumption, and growing political and economic inequities. In a conversation moderated by ecologist Gretchen Daily, the Ehrlichs give cause for concern and offer reasons for hope.
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Clean, Secure, and Efficient Energy:
Can We Have It All?

Sally Benson, Paul Ehrlich, Fred Krupp, George Shultz and JB Straubel with Amy Goodman

Wednesday, September 5, 2007 | 8:00 – 10:00pm | Memorial Auditorium | Free and Open to All

The race is on for commercialization of domestic fuels that shrink our carbon footprint, and change is in the wind: utilities are revisiting solar and wind power; big oil is investigating biofuels; car companies are betting on fuel cells; and government is rethinking nuclear power while peddling incentives for expanded production of natural gas and "clean" coal. But what about good old-fashioned conservation? Are we on the right track?
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Tibet: Where Continents and Cultures Collide

Simon Klemperer, Lyman P. Van Slyke, Tenzin Tethong, Emily Yeh, and Michael Zhao
with Orville Schell

Thursday, February 19, 2009 | 7:30 – 9:00pm | Kresge Auditorium | Free and Open to All

The Tibetan plateau, a land mass about the size of Western Europe, has great biodiversity despite its high altitudes. Known as “Asia’s Watertower,” Tibet’s glaciers feed rivers in China, India, and Southeast Asia. The region’s importance cannot be overstated, nor can the short- and long-term effects of environmental problems such as the declining quality of grasslands, melting glaciers, and rising population. Our conversation begins with a look at the physical geography of Tibet and will assess the impact of development projects and efforts to protect and restore an ecological system that is crucial for much of the planet.

Presented with the School of Earth Sciences

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