Please join us for the Fall CEAP Poster Session December 1, 2011 at 4:00 PM Covenant Fine Arts Center Recital Hall (CFAC 107).
Dr. Boersema has written a just published book in Dutch: Images of Easter Island; the Sustainability of a Culture (April 2011); an English translation is on the way.
When the Dutch explorer Jacob Roggeveen in 1772, as the first European, laid his eyes on the island on Easter Sunday, 1772 he saw an entirely deforested landscape and a culture in decline. Was there a connection between the two? The theory advanced by, among others, Clive Ponting, Jared Diamond, as well as many other scholars, that the culture responsible for the statues (the Moai) collapsed because forests were cut to transport the figures, gained broad acceptance.
The story of Easter Island grew into an icon of environmental history, an example of cultural collapse due to mistaken use of natural resources and a warning for the entire Earth as an island in space. Professor Boersema examines this widely accepted conclusion against the light of the history of the island and emphatically rejects it. Another story needs to be told.
Following the lecture, student posters of CEAP projects this semester will be on display in the West lobby along with refreshments.