Thursday, April 9, 2015 / 4:00 PM
The Amazon rainforest of Brazil is cut down to create cattle pastures and agricultural fields.  Deforestation brings profit, but it is also linked to deeply held ideals of development and progress achieved through the transformation of a dark, threatening forest into a “clean,” cultivated landscape.  While Amazonian deforestation is universally decried as a driver of global environmental change, other forms of Brazilian nature control, such as the “Brazilian wax,” are increasingly popular around the world.  In this presentation, I examine deforestation and depilation (body hair removal) as parallel processes in which natural “covers” are removed or otherwise managed...

The latest issue of the American Anthropological Association's digital, public access journal Open Anthropology is entitled Hello Anthropocene: Climate Change and Anthropology.   The issue highlights some of the interesting work being done by anthropologists, and includes my 2011 "Black Hats and Smooth Hands" article.  You can download articles in this issue for free.  For more on the contribution of anthropology to the study environmental change, see the recently released report by the AAA Global Climate Task Force: Changing the Atmosphere: Anthropology and Climate Change.

The theme of the 2014-15 Interdisciplinary Humanites Center Annual Series is "The Anthropocene: Views from the Humanities"  2015 brings a number of interesting events, including screening of "Watermark"(1/15) and a roundtable on "Natural Capital" (1/22).  You can see recordings of presentations from the fall, including Andrew Revkin, Nick Kawa, and Dick Hebdige.

CONFERENCE: "Approaching the Anthropocene: Perspectives from the Humanities and Fine Arts"  to be held at UCSB Thursday-Friday, May 7-8, 2015.  Proposals due by 3/2/15. 

Marianne Schmink and Jeffrey Hoelle  

Tuesday, Jan. 6, 2015, 3-4 PM, Ellison Hall 4th floor conference room (UCSB)

Schmink and Woods‘ Contested Frontiers in Amazonia (1992) documented the complex social, environmental, and political consequences of the opening of the once remote municipality of São Felix do Xingu (SFX) to colonization beginning in the 1970s. In recent decades, population and standard of living have increased, violence and land conflict have decreased, but the future of SFX remains unsettled, as the heart of an expanding agricultural frontier with skyrocketing deforestation rates. ...