From the Serengeti to the Bavarian Forest, and back again: Bernhard Grzimek, celebrity conservation, and the transnational politics of national parks.
Graham Huggan has published a new article in the Ecozona: European Journal of Literature, Culture & Environment. His short piece focuses on the work of the German “celebrity conservationist,” Bernhard Grzimek, situating it in the context of historical and contemporary debates about the political and ecological importance of national parks. Grzimek’s role in the creation of Bavarian Forest National Park may not be as well-known as his public ministrations on behalf of the wild animals of the Serengeti, but in several ways his work in and for these two national parks, engaging with the fraught politics of the period, was intertwined. The essay makes the case for national parks as complex geopolitical formations in which human and animal interests alternately collide and converge. Download the article here.
Corridor Talk: Conservation Humanities and the Future of Europe’s National Parks
A description of the Corridor Talk project has been published in the Journal of European Landscapes. Authored by the project team, it explains how the project aims to foster a conservation that is more culturally aware, more aware of human behaviour and values, and more aware of the ethical complexities of its work by applying the “corridor talk” metaphor in three ways: to address and support the material ecological corridors that link protected sites; to address and support the symbolic corridors that connect governance and cultural perspectives on protected sites; and to bring humanities research into discussions on nature conservation. Download the article here.
15th International Wadden Sea Symposium Report
Eveline de Smalen participated in the 15th International Wadden Sea Symposium in Büsum in 2021 and together with her fellow panelists she composed a set of
recommendations for science and management that are included in the IWSS report. This report will serve as input for the Trilateral Governmental
Conference on the protection of the Wadden Sea which will be held later
this year in Wilhelmshaven. Click here to download a copy of the report.
Today, the environment seems omnipresent in European policy within and beyond the European Union. The idea of a shared European environment has come a long way, but is still being contested today.
Greening Europe focuses on the many ways people have interacted with nature and made it an issue of European concern. This book asks how notions of Europe mattered in these activities and exposes the many entanglements of activists across the subcontinent who set out to connect and network, and to exchange knowledge, worldviews, and strategies that exceeded their national horizons. Moving beyond human agency, the handbook also highlights the eminent role nature played in both “greening” Europe and making Europe a shared environment.
In their chapter about the European Green Belt project along the former Iron Curtain, Pavla Šimková and Astrid M. Eckert highlight the connections between borders and the natural environment on the example of the Šumava and Bavarian Forest national parks.
The concept of the Anthropocene represents a challenge to the cultural imagination, as it draws together deep, geological time, recent and current events, and long futures; the geographical and generational implications of justice; and the profound entanglement of human progress with ecological decline. In this open-access article in the journal Maritime Studies, Katie Ritson and Eveline de Smalen argue that the cultural landscape of the Wadden Sea is a space in which these paradoxes and connections are made visible and material.
In this open-access article, the Corridor Talk team have put forward the case for incorporating the humanities in conservation science. We conclude that including humanities research alongside natural and social science will make conservation fairer and more effective.
Eveline de Smalen writes about poetry and nature conservation in the Wadden Sea. The history of conservation in the Wadden Sea reserves a starring role for birds. Birds were important for its conception, central to its policies today and contribute to its success as a protected area, but they can also help us think about nature reserves conceptually and critically assess their role in society. Nature reserves are often considered static, unchanging and ahistorical places. This article provides a reading of Ed Leeflang’s poem “The Sanderling” to show how literature about birds can help us think about nature reserves as historical places shaped by a multitude of more-than-human agencies, and marked by loss.
This is the first resource to provide a wide ranging, cross-cultural and interdisciplinary investigation and analysis of the ways in which researchers use a broad range of methodologies in order to pursue their sonic investigations. Jonathan Carruthers-Jones, along with Alice Eldridge and Roger Norum contribute a chapter entitled: Sounding wild spaces: inclusive mapmaking through multispecies listening across scales. They ask the question, might listening across scales help us understand, map and protect wild spaces and species? The chapter considers the potential for listening methods to integrate ethnographic, cartographic, geological and ecological perspectives toward more inclusive map-making.
It takes as its point of departure the multi-disciplinary project WILDSENS, which places the acoustic environment (or soundscape) as the locus of interaction of human and non-human actors and processes, biotic and abiotic processes.
Edited by Marco Heurich and Christof Mauch
Experts from various disciplines, including Pavla Šimková, contribute to this collection that explores the history and culture of Bavaria’s first national park.