January Theme: Nature & Environment

We’re starting off the New Year by taking a close look at where we are, how we got there, and what we can do to change.

This month we’ll be covering new books like Austin Troy’s The Very Hungry City, examining energy and economic sensibilities for cities and suburbs worldwide. For a bit of a chill, Edward Stump’s Roof at the Bottom of the World: Discovering the Transantarctic Mountains features mesmerizing photographs of the world’s most remote mountain belt from Stump’s forty years of research in Antarctica, bringing to life the first comprehensive, fully illustrated history of the region’s discovery and exploration. And having celebrated in December the centenary of the first explorers to reach the South Pole, Pulitzer Prize-winning Edward J. Larson turns his attention to the personalities of this age of discovery in his biography, An Empire of Ice.

A bit closer to home: Yale University Art Gallery curator Joshua Chang discusses the career of Robert Adams and his landscape photography of the American West for the grand, new retrospective, Robert Adams: The Place We Live. Alissa Hamilton draws our attention to the making of orange juice and why this simple breakfast item is not what it appears to be; surely, it must be Squeezed. If you missed the PBS airings of the Journey of the Universe documentary, be sure to check in on Facebook or the JoTU website for future screenings in your area.

But not all environments are physical, and our respective states of mind impact us every bit as much. We’ll continue our discussions of Elisabeth Young-Bruehl’s Childism: Confronting Prejudice Against Children. Richard Sennett returns to Yale’s list with Together: The Rituals, Pleasures, and Politics of Cooperation, focusing on cooperation as a craft to be learned whether in schools, at work, or even online. And as for those decisions in your personal life, Kent Greenfield’s The Myth of Choice and Joseph Turow’s The Daily You definitely have surprising revelations about how every day options are constructed and limited long before we ever make a decision.     

Finally, we’ll preview Monticello Garden and Grounds Director Peter Hatch’s “A Rich Spot of Earth”: Thomas Jefferson’s Revolutionary Garden at Monticello, showcasing Jefferson’s amazing vegetable garden, its uniquely American characteristics, and its legacy. With all this green-talk, springtime will come closer every day!

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