Registration is now open for Estuaries and the Anthropocene, a digital symposium hosted by Texas A&M University at Galveston on May 21.
Estuaries and the Anthropocene will bring together scholars from across the humanities, social sciences, and STEM fields to explore the multifaceted connections between human societies and estuarine environments during both historical and contemporary time periods. As we daily face the multiplying threats posed by anthropogenic climate and environmental change, coastal communities—like those around Galveston Bay, one of the largest estuaries in the United States—must understand these challenges, dangers, and opportunities in order to adapt to their changing worlds. Estuarine environments present a key locus to study the dialectic between human societies and environmental change. Increasingly humanists, social scientists, and natural scientists employ the concept of the anthropocene to describe the myriad changes that human activity has wrought on the earth’s natural systems. As researchers, observers, activists, and environmental managers grapple with these changes, estuarine environments must be at the center of these analyses. While anthropogenic changes to the atmosphere, the oceans, and the earth’s biodiversity have received sustained attention in scholarly and in public discourse, understanding the specific effects of the anthropocene on estuaries and the people who live near them is crucial for coastal communities given humanity’s reliance on these environments.
The symposium will feature 4 interdiciplinary panels, including a speed round featuring innovative presentation methods beyond traditional paper presentations. The event will conclude with a keynote address from Pulitzer Prize winning historian Jack Davis of the University of Florida entitled "The Gulf: A Brief History of an Estuarine Sea."