This is info about an upcoming seminar (on Monday!) that overlaps with the course and might be of interest to you.
the next higher seminar at the Division of History of Science, Technology and Environment at KTH will be held on Monday, October 1, 13:15-14:45.
Our guest will be Mahesh Rangarajan, Director of the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, New Delhi, and Professor at the Department of History, University of Delhi. He will speak about "Democracy, Development and Ecology: Dilemmas and Choices in 21st Century India".
The economic rise of Asia, especially though not exclusively of China and India is widely seen as a major feature of the coming century. At the same time, economic expansion and technological transformation opens up new possibilities for human self advancement, it imposes new burdens on resources and new strains on the fabric of life. The scale and scope of the remaking of landscapes and waterscapes as currently under way often entails the obliteration of ecosystems, species and habitats.
In the Indian case, there is special interest as it is a constitutional democracy of 60 years standing with a free press and labour unions, an independent judiciary and a vigorous public sphere of debate. Environmental issues are often not only about rare species and habitats but about human displacement and despoliation of rivers, the clash of industry and water and land based livelihoods. How there can be peaceable ways to move ahead is a major challenge. The last two decades have seen a deepening of democracy but the quickening of the growth process has also deepened conflicts over forests, land, living spaces and water.
Whether or not there can be more harmonious ways of achieving a better quality of life while keeping the natural cycles of renewal and repair intact is a major challenge. One meta shift in the new century is that environmental issues, from global warming to water shortages, from the death of species to displacement have come to the centre stage of public life. How these are made subject of effective action poses more than mere scientific or technical challenge. It will call for a re-engagement with our pasts as we try to comprehend better, more humane and effective ways to shape the future.
The seminar will take place at the Division of History of Science, Technology and Environment, KTH main campus, Brinellvägen 32, 11428 Stockholm. The seminar room is located on the top floor.
Sabine Höhler and Maja Fjaestad