EASLCE

European Association for Studies of Literature, Culture and the Environment

EASLCE 14th Webinar: Ecocritics Going Public: Using Our Knowledge for Public Good

Scott Slovic, Professor of Environmental Humanities, University of Idaho, USA
EASCLE Webinar

Date and time: April 5th, 10am PST / 7pm CET

Many students, teachers, and researchers have been drawn to the environmental humanities because of a desire to contribute, through academic work, to the well-being of society and the planet—but sometimes practitioners feel unprepared to “go public” with their academic approaches to social and environmental concerns. In this webinar, we will discuss theories and best practices pertaining bringing ideas from the environmental humanities to new audiences of decision makers and citizens. We will examine excerpts from Marybeth Gasman’s Academics Going Public: How to Write and Speak Beyond Academe (2016); we will discuss writing by environmental humanities scholars crafted for non-academic audiences; and we will tell stories of our own public humanities experiences and brainstorm to come up with strategies that may help us in our future work.

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Readings:

Heller, Donald E. “Writing Opinion Articles.” Academics Going Public: How to Write and Speak
Beyond Academe, edited by Marybeth Gasman. Routledge, 2016. 21-37.
Gasman, Marybeth. Introduction. Academics Going Public: How to Write and Speak Beyond
Academe. Routledge, 2016. 1-7.
Major, William. “Thoreau’s Cellphone Experiment.” The Chronicle of Higher Education (January
16, 2011).
Malamud, Randy. “It’s the End of the World as We Know It.” The Huffington Post (February 7,
2015).
Slovic, Scott. “‘Bright Words’: Finding Common Ground in Environmental Negotiations.”
Transformations/OpenDemocracy (1 February 2019).
https://www.opendemocracy.net/transformation/scott-slovic/bright-words-finding-common-
ground-in-environmental-negotiations
---. “Even Better than the Real Thing.” Going Away to Think: Engagement, Retreat, and
Ecocritical Responsibility. University of Nevada Press, 2008. 212-221.
---. “Language Matters: Environmental Controversy and the Quest for Common Ground.” Public
Land and Resources Law Review” (University of Montana)(2018): 1-21.
Slovic, Scott, and Paul Slovic, “Climate Change Is Genocide for Island Cultures.” The Eugene
Register-Guard (31 July 2016). http://projects.registerguard.com/rg/opinion/34611411-
196/climate-change-is-genocide-for-island-nations.html.csp

---. “The Arithmetic of Compassion.” The New York Times (4 December 2015).
https://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/06/opinion/the-arithmetic-of-compassion.html
Stein, Kat. “How to Write an Influential Press Release.” Academics Going Public: How to Write
and Speak Beyond Academe. Ed. Marybeth Gasman. Routledge, 2016. 105-117.

Questions for Discussion:

1. What are some appropriate reasons for environmental humanities scholars to take time
away from their academic work to “go public”? What are some possible reasons to be
cautious about writing or speaking for non-academic audiences?
2. How do we alter our communication style when writing opinion essays or press
releases?
3. What are the best forums for “public” communication? Community meetings, local or
national newspapers, professional magazines in other disciplines, websites, etc.? How
should we identify places to send our non-academic work?
4. What are some examples of your own efforts to “go public” with your ideas?
5. Does it make sense for us to be training students to do both scholarly writing and
writing for public audiences?

Please make sure you translate the date and time into your specific time zone.

Date and time: April 5th, 10am PST / 7pm CET

Register now!