Every month the NiCHE New Scholars Committee meets electronically on Google Hangouts to discuss books, articles, personal research, and general topics affecting environmental historians.
This month Julia Feuer-Cotter will be leading a discussion of smellscapes in environmental history. Julia’s work focuses on the sensual perception and imagination of the resource extracting industry in the Arctic. She is working with women who have experienced violence while working in Alaska’s Arctic Oil Fields and how critical the perceptual engagement with the environment is to the conceptual construction of place.
Using a chapter on Smellscapes by J.D. Porteous and the smell maps of Kate McLean as guideposts, Julia wishes to discuss:
- How is the perceptual engagement with the environment critical to the conceptual construction of place?
- How do you imagine the sensual impressions of places you’ve never had direct contact with?
- Do you think that the lack of sensual information of a place can make the place less relatable or evoke less emotions because there is a lack of perceptual memory?
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