Gannon University’s Culture and Climate Change Series Continues

Posted: February 16, 2017

Gannon University's yearlong series of events exploring culture and climate change will extend the in-depth examination begun last fall with presentations from experts on topics ranging from the effect of climate change on water supplies to the political response to climate change in the U.S.

The Spring Semester events have and will continue to extend the analysis to the implications of climate change on U.S. military policy and on wildlife. 

On Tuesday, March 14, Sherri Mason, Ph.D., professor of chemistry and chair of the department of geology and environmental sciences at the State University of New York at Fredonia, will present "The Perils of Plastic," a lecture on the perils of freshwater pollution by plastics.  Mason conducted the first-ever survey for plastic pollution within the open waters of the Great Lakes. Her research was the subject of coverage from the New York Times and NPR to Sydney, Australia.

Historical responses to previous climate events are the subject of "You're Hot Then You're Cold:  Climate Change, Crusades and Witch Burning in Europe," a lecture on Thursday, March 23 presented by Geoff Grundy, Ph.D. and John Vohlidka, Ph.D. of the Gannon University history department.  They will discuss the responses to the so-called "Little Ice Age," a period between about 1300 and 1470 during which Europe and North America were subjected to much colder winters than during the 20th century.

The year's events will conclude on Wednesday, April 5 at the annual English Awards Night sponsored by the Gannon University English department and keynoted by a presentation by poet Ross Gay.

Additionally, "Catching Climate Change: A Reality Check," a display created by students in the honors sociology course taught by Gannon's Richard Moodey, Ph.D., will be available for viewing until 3 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 18 at the third annual College of Humanities Education and Social Science (CHESS) Humanities Conference in the Palumbo Academic Center, 824 Peach St.

The Culture and Climate Change series is a response to "Laudato Si," Pope Francis' 2015 encyclical letter on climate change, which was inspired by the canticle written by his namesake, Saint Francis of Assisi, that "reminds us that our common home is like a sister with whom we share our life and a beautiful mother who opens her arms to embrace us."