Glen Canyon Lecture Series Presents TWO Lectures for September 2012:
“A Great Aridness: Climate Change and the Future of the American Southwest” by William deBuys
Wednesday September 19, 2012, 7:00 pm (Mountain Standard Time) at Carl Hayden Visitor Center at Glen Canyon Dam.
In A Great Aridness, William deBuys paints a compelling picture of what the Southwest might look like when the heat turns up and the water runs out. This semi-arid land, vulnerable to water shortages, rising temperatures, wildfires, and a host of other environmental challenges, is poised to bear the heaviest consequences of global environmental change in the United States. Examining interrelated factors such as vanishing wildlife, forest die backs, and the over-allocation of the already stressed Colorado River-upon which nearly 30 million people depend–the author narrates the landscape’s history-and future. He tells the inspiring stories of the climatologists and others who are helping untangle the complex, interlocking causes and effects of global warming. And while the fate of this region may seem at first blush to be of merely local interest, what happens in the Southwest, deBuys suggests, will provide a glimpse of what other mid-latitude arid lands worldwide–the Mediterranean Basin, southern Africa, and the Middle East–will experience in the coming years.
Writer and conservationist William deBuys is the author of seven books, which range from memoir and biography to environmental history and studies of place. A native of Maryland, he attended the University of North Carolina, where he was graduated with highest honors in 1972. Soon afterwards, the writer and social critic Robert Coles brought him to New Mexico as a research assistant, initiating deBuys’s deep relationship with the cultures and landscapes of the Southwest. DeBuys’s books include Enchantment and Exploitation: The Life and Hard Times of a New Mexico Mountain Range, which won a Southwest Book Award; River of Traps, which was recognized as a New York Times Notable Book of the Year and was one of three finalists for the Pulitzer Prize in General Non-Fiction in 1991; Salt Dreams: Land and Water in Low-Down California, which won the Western States Book Award and several other prizes; and Seeing Things Whole: the Essential John Wesley Powell. DeBuys’s shorter work has appeared in Orion, The New York Times Book Review, and High Country News.
“Finding Everett Ruess” by David Roberts
Wednesday September 26, 2012, 7:00 pm (Mountain Standard Time) at Carl Hayden Visitor Center at Glen Canyon Dam.
Finding Everett Ruess is the definitive biography of the artist, writer, and eloquent celebrator of the wilderness whose bold solo explorations of the American West and mysterious disappearance in the Utah desert at age 20 have earned him a large and devoted cult following. More than 75 years after his vanishing, Ruess stirs the kinds of passion and speculation accorded such legendary doomed American adventurers as Into the Wild’s Chris McCandless and Amelia Earhart. Wandering alone with burros and pack horses through California and the Southwest for five years in the early 1930s, on voyages lasting as long as ten months, Ruess also became friends with photographers Edward Weston and Dorothea Lange, swapped prints with Ansel Adams, took part in a Hopi ceremony, learned to speak Navajo, and was among the first “outsiders” to venture deeply into what was then (and to some extent still is) largely a little-known wilderness. In this definitive account of Ruess’s extraordinary life and the enigma of his vanishing, David Roberts eloquently captures Ruess’s tragic genius and ongoing fascination.
David Roberts is the author of twenty books on mountaineering, adventure, and history including In Search of the Old Ones, Pueblo Revolt, and A Newer World: Kit Carson John C Fremont And The Claiming Of The American West. He has written for National Geographic, National Geographic Adventure, and Smithsonian. He lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.