Berkshire Festival of Women Writers

In my classes this spring at Bard College at Simon’s Rock, I have been exploring the fruitful overlap between the humanities and environmental studies.

Specifically, in a class entitled “Women Write the World,” we are reading a series of literary approaches to environmental activism on a wide range of issues, from deforestation and climate change to biodiversity loss and the dangers of agricultural mono-cropping.

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The aftermath of Katy Hill.

Week 3

by Naomi Pitman, Greig Fields, and Clara Woolner

This week we started working with Andy Cassini from the University of Wisconsin who has been studying the critically endangered Monserrat Oriole for the past six years. Since the Soufriere Hills volcano erupted in 1997 it’s been estimated there are only 700 orioles left.

In our search for the oriole this week we hiked numerous trails and after a four hour hike to Katy Hill, the highest peak on the island, we successfully identified a few Montserrat Orioles by its distinctive orange belly. Then we spotted a number of other birds, including a Trembler by its… well, trembling, a Mangrove Cuckoo by its size and striped tail feathers, a Bananaquit by its incessant chirping and small yellow body, a Caribbean Elaenia by its striped wings and size, and Pearly-Eyed Thrasher the "super tramp" of birds, by its bright white eyes and need for attention.

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Jared Weiss If you are a senior, there are two questions you can expect to be asked at any given time on campus.

The first: “How’s your thesis going?”

This question is easier asked than answered. By November, some students have already altered the focus of their theses several times – often to the chagrin of thesis advisors. Those that know what they are doing haven’t necessarily done what they are doing. It is the typical senior thesis process: Get caught up in all kinds of other work and obligations for several months, suddenly realize, “Oh wait… that thesis thing… I should be doing that,” then freak out and scramble to meet the thesis deadlines you set with your advisors. No amount of planning can really prevent this from happening, as work obligations and unexpected distractions inevitably interfere.

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ANTH 212: Anthropology Goes to the Movies

Anthropology Goes to the MoviesSimon’s Rock is known for its small, discussion-based classes and the originality of its students and its professors. Several years ago, Nancy Bonvillain – Anthropology and Linguistics professor, and much-adored instructor – rolled out a new class offering a fresh angle on her discipline.

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“Only one year left!”

Bethany Geiger ‘10, Johanna Schwartz ’10, and Jennifer Edwards ’13That’s the thought that keeps pounding in my head. Just one year to do everything you still want to do!! It’s not so much a “last-minute” scramble as a “last year” scramble as I try to fit in all the Simon’s Rock experiences I’ve always wanted to have.

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