On brief reflection, most people will agree the oceans are complex environments that affect virtually every facet of human society. However, full appreciation of the importance of the oceans for life on this planet can only be achieved by applying the perspectives of the entire spectrum of academic disciplines as well as the views of practitioners whose livelihoods are ocean-based. A new research network of scholars at Dalhousie University and Memorial University of Newfoundland – Social Sciences and Humanities Oceans Research and Education (SSHORE) launched in 2014 – aims to provide a platform for developing that understanding. As the SSHORE objective states:
The oceans operate at the intersection of often competing concerns, complicated by fast-paced changes in technology, global interconnectedness, and environmental awareness through cultural representations as well as scientific advances. Developing scholarly frameworks, across a variety of disciplines, for analyzing these issues is crucial if we are to democratically and inclusively make sound decisions about oceans.
Scholars in the SSHORE network are interested in: “historical trends of ocean engagement, the challenges that the commercialization of oceans poses (e.g., cultural practices that support safety, environmentalism as a belief and a social practice, questions of sovereignty, including aboriginal rights), ethical commitments to environmentalism that overlap with, but are not equal to, economic concerns about sustainability, literary traditions that shape the meanings of oceans in culture writ large, and the social fabric in regions that value ocean resources for cultural and economic reasons.”
With the support of a Connections grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, SSHORE is hosting a two-day workshop on 10-12 May 2017, entitled: “Canada’s Responsibility to Our Shining Seas: Ethics, Community, Culture, 1867-2067” (CROSS). The focus of the workshop is to advance understanding of Canada’s relationship with the oceans, the historical trends that led to this state, and the social fabric in regions that value the fishery for cultural and economic reasons or need the jobs that oil and gas bring.
EIUI team members Bertrum MacDonald and Ian Stewart will participate in the workshop with presentations on “From Science to Decision Making: Scientific Information and Ocean Management” and “Fish vs Oil: A Science and Technology Studies Perspective on a Seemingly Unavoidable Agon,” respectively.
Two events are open to the public:
Our Shining Seas on Screen – Wednesday, 10 May 2017, 7:00 pm
Canadian and international experimental, animated, and documentary films will be presented that explore different perspectives on connections between the human and the oceanic.
Sea Changes, 1867-2017: A Public Panel and Discussion – Thursday, 11 May 2017, 7:30 pm
Chair: Jerry Bannister (History, Dalhousie University); Panelists: Ted Cavanagh (Architecture, Dalhousie University), Aldo Chircop (Law, Dalhousie University), Shelley Denny (Doctoral Student, Dalhousie University and Unama’ki Institute of Natural Resources), Sue Goyette (Creative Writing, Dalhousie University; author of Ocean), and Eric Mills (History of Science and Technology, University of King’s College).
Further details about the public events are available at this link
Further details about the workshop are available at this link