Geography Colloquium: Andrew Jenks "Is progress to die for?"

September 22, 2010

“The Political, Social, and Cultural Geography of Toxic Waste Disaster: A World History Perspective”

Politics, power, society, and technological development are inextricably intertwined in modern world history. Given this intricate matrix of connections, spectacular technological failure is bound to have momentous physical, political and social consequences. What happens when the instruments of progress turn into exploding nuclear reactors, killer clouds of toxic chemicals, and toxic waste dumps filled with deadly carcinogens? At what point do societies realize that pollution no longer smells like progress but is really just pollution and might even kill you? Is progress to die for?