Nature and the natural in the humanities: Teaching for environmental sustainability
University of Birmingham
27 April 2012
Deadline for submissions: 1 March 2012
Climate change and environmental degradation are often described as the pressing concerns of the current generation. This workshop aims to explore ways in which lecturers in the humanities can engage with these issues through the study of literature, language, religion, philosophy, history and art.
Relationships between humans, the environment, nature and landscape are themes throughout human history in literature, philosophy, art and religion through struggles with and over nature. The environment and non-human actors play a key role in religions as objects of worship, sacrifice, uncleanness, food (both permitted and prohibited) and designated sacred spaces. In historical terms the natural environment has informed national identity, foundation myths and is seen as a source of economic prosperity and culture.
This workshop will explore how these themes might inform the university curriculum in the humanities.