Environmental History Expert to Present Edmondson Lectures Feb. 21-22

Feb. 20, 2008

by Devany Severin, student newswriter, (254) 710-6805

Dr. Donald Worster, the Joyce and Elizabeth Hall professor of U.S. history at the University of Kansas, will deliver the 30th annual Charles Edmondson Historical Lectures at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 21, and Friday, Feb. 22, in room 100 of Morrison Hall on the Baylor University campus. The theme of the series is "A Biographical Perspective on Environmental History."

Thursday's lecture is titled, "A Life in Nature: Environmental Biography as a New Kind of History." Dr. Randall O'Brien, executive vice president and provost, will preside over the lecture while Dr. Susan Bratton, chair and professor of environmental studies, will provide the introduction.

Friday's lecture is titled, "On John Muir's Trail: Nature in an Age of Liberal Principles." Dr. Larry Lyon, dean of the graduate school, will preside over the lecture and Dr. Stephen Sloan, assistant professor of history and director of the Baylor Institute for Oral History, will provide the introduction.

A leading scholar in the growing field of environmental history, Dr. Worster has written numerous books involving both American environmental history and the history of the American West. His book, Dust Bowl: The Southern Plains in the 1930s, won the prestigious Bancroft Prize, and Rivers of Empire: Water, Aridity, and the Growth of the American West was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize.

Worster is the former president of the American Society for Environmental History, and he has lectured extensively around the world bringing awareness to the impact that human society has upon the natural world.

Worster earned a bachelor's and a master's degree at the University of Kansas in 1963 and 1964 and later attended Yale University where he received a master of philosophy degree in 1970 and a doctorate degree in 1971. Worster taught at the University of Hawaii and Brandeis University before returning to the University of Kansas in 1989 where he became the Hall Professor of American History.

The Edmondson Historical Lectures, sponsored by Baylor's history department, are made possible by an endowment established by Dr. E. Bud Edmondson of Longview to honor his father, Charles S.B. Edmondson.

Both lectures are free and open to the public. For more information, contact the department of history at (254) 710-2667.

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