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Scholars Day: April 15, 2009

Bridging the Gap of 1968: The Environmental Movement

The environmental movement of the 1960s had its roots in the conservation and preservationist movements formed decades earlier. As American society changed through the twentieth century, so did issues deemed important to conservations and preservationists. By the 1960s, a group of young adults, disenchanted with causes that were prone to violence coalesced around issues of clean air, water and a new understanding of society’s interconnectedness within the world. Popular literature such as Silent Spring and The Population Bomb further influenced this group, and environmentalism became a mainstream movement that maximized citizen advocacy in ways never envisioned by early conservationists. Environmentalism was at its core a movement against “the system”, yet the environmental movement included few minorities even though some of the worst environmental excesses occurred where minorities lived and worked. Finally, the environmental movement has splintered and fractured several times, a sign of the complex issues facing society and environmentalists.

Presenter: Thomas Klotzbach (Undergraduate Student)
Topic: History
Location: 123 Hartwell
Time: 1:30 pm (Session III)