Continue to think about the idea of Wilderness as a concept. Although we can talk about Wilderness as a political and cultural construct, in many ways Alaskans simply cannot ignore the role of nature in our lives, and we cannot ignore what we know as Wilderness and pretend that it does not exist. Being unprepared for the outdoors here can mean death. We also can’t ignore the fact that the structure and content of the Alaskan wilderness is intimately connected to a global climate. I have had many students in my classes who are from rural Alaska and they are facing the complete disappearance of their villages into the ocean (the result of coastal erosion and rising water levels) and hunting patterns are changing due to a change in animal presence and migratory behavior.
In The Last New Land read pp. 516-560
Listen to Marybeth Holleman read some of her work: Climate Change and the Literary Imagination
Blog Entry 6
This week your assignment is to write about the way you understand the Alaskan Wilderness. Discuss the ways in which you interact with it and what it means to you personally, not as a cultural or political construction. Try to use photos or videos to help others understand your perspective.