lectures on the West
interdisciplinary talks begin March 1
lecture series Visions for the American West, organized
by the UNM Department of Geography, begins Friday, March 1,
with author Charles E. Little presenting, The Tragedy
of Land and the Quest for Visions of the Good Place at
7 p.m. in Dane Smith Hall, room 123.
lecture will include a question and answer period. The lecture
is free and open to the public.
lecture will feature an anti-slide show on how the
Western landscape has been trashed and provide an overview of
how American civic and political leaders beginning with
Thomas Jefferson have tried to promulgate a vision for
the land as the essential cultural element of the American experiment.
though people keep trying to ruin the American West, it is a
remarkably resilient place filled with folk who have imaginative
new ideas for ways to redeem what Wallace Stegner calls the
geography of hope, said Little. Im pleased
to have the opportunity to kick off this series of lectures,
which I am sure will be inspirational to people who are concerned
about the West. Those who attend may find that they are not
just a voice in the wilderness, but among many friends who are
trying to make good on the promise of this region.
is a writer, policy analyst on land use and natural resources,
former head of the natural resources policy research at the
Library of Congress, and president and editorial director of
the American Land Publishing Project, Inc. of the Center for
American Places. His most recent books are Sacred Lands
of Indian America, Discover America: The Smithsonian
Book of the National Parks, and The Dying of the
will feature seven hour-long lectures over the course of the
spring and fall semesters providing up-to-date, authoritative
reports on the status and issues of the American West. It is
organized by Bradley Cullen, acting chair of the UNM Department
of Geography, with assistance from Little and Hal Jackson, adjunct
faculty members in the department. The lectures are co-sponsored
by the Departments of Economics, Philosophy, Political Science,
Sociology and the College of Arts and Sciences, Associate Provosts
office, Ortiz Center, Landscape Architecture Program, Water
Resources Program and the Office of the Vice Provost, Research.
Upcoming lectures include:
Reclaiming Scenic Beauty, Meg Maguire Despite
a proliferation of billboards, celltowers and tasteless commercial
development, the movement to stem the tide of further outrages
has never been stronger and techniques have been developed to
restore, reclaim and revitalize once beautiful, once-charming
places including inner-city neighborhoods, suburban villages
and small-farm countryside through citizen action.
This Land is Our Land: Preserving the Public Estate,
John G. Mitchell On the status of public lands, mainly
mountain areas, and the controversies pertaining to mining,
grazing, recreational development, logging and energy issues.
The Sacred Earth: Native American Perceptions of Landscape
and Policy Prescriptions for Sacred Lands, Christopher
H. Peters On how American Indians perceive all land as
sacred and how sites used for religious observances have been
destroyed by government agencies and private developers.