November 14, 2019: IRES Faculty Seminar with Paige West

IRES Seminar Series

Time: 12:30pm to 1:30pm (every Thursday)

Location: AERL Theatre (room 120), 2202 Main Mall


*** Note: This seminar will not be recorded***

A prayer for the world: climate change, engaged scholarship, and the social sciences


Each new day, it seems, we wake to a barrage of terrible global news and horrifying images. This is particularly true with regard to climate news. It is enough to paralyze even the most empathetic and concerned citizens. In this lecture, drawing on her twenty three years of research in Papua New Guinea,  anthropologist Paige West asks us to consider what each of us can do as students, scholars, writers, and thinkers to understand the historical processes that set the conditions of possibility for our present world, to document or to witness the transformations of the present, and to use our scholars skills to work towards transforming the future.

Paige West

Professor, Barnard College and Columbia University 


Paige West is The Claire Tow Professor of Anthropology at Barnard College and Columbia University where she holds an endowed chair and the director of the Center for the Study of Social Difference at Columbia University. Her broad scholarly interest is the relationship between societies and their environments. Since the mid 1990s she has worked with indigenous people in Papua New Guinea. She is the author of three books and the editor of five more. Dr. West has written about environmental conservation and international development, the aesthetics and poetics of human social relations with nature, and the creation of commodities and practices of consumption. She is currently writing about climate change.