Learning from the Orr Forum on Climate Change

Wilson had the unique experience on Tuesday, April 19 to hear about climate change as part of the Orr Forum from our very own Dr. Lisa Woolley, Professor of English. Woolley started the discussion by saying that climate change is an opportunity to think of the future humanity is working towards and a chance for humans to rethink how we are treating the environment. For her presentation, she referenced the book “Flight Behavior,” which is a “Cli-fi” as Woolley called it, meaning “climate fiction.”

Photo by Pixabay

Photo by Pixabay

The book is about monarch butterflies and their migration patterns. The butterflies typically fly south for the winter and stay in Mexico until warmer weather. However, in this book, the butterflies end up in Tennessee in the mountains. The main character, Dellarobia, is the one who notices the butterflies when she is hiking up the mountain and sees orange. The butterflies represent romanticism, science, media, and various other elements.

Along with Dellarobia comes another character, Leighton Atkins, who talks to the towns’ people about climate change. He talks about a “sustainability pledge” that will help people lower their carbon footprint. Here Woolley initiated Dr. Larry Shillock in some dialogue to get a preview of what happens Dellarobia, and Leighton. Some things to do to make things more sustainable is buying reused things, driving less, recycling, using energy efficient sources, flying less, etc. However, this may not always be an easy thing to do. Culture issues arise and there is a debate of assigning blame, due to luxury versus survival emissions, and a lack of reflection.

We need to take this book into our own consideration. We have one planet and we need to take care of it. Everyone needs to reflect on their own positions and make the right choices to ensure a healthy earth.


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