Arts & Culture
“What the Earth Said”: A Reading and Conversation with Niyi Osundare
- 8:00 pm
07 August 2020
Online | Free
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Tune in to the Green Room with questions as we host Professor Niyi Osundare, a prolific Nigerian poet, dramatist, literary critic, and author, of ‘The Eye of the Earth and City Without People’, to tie the knot between environment, poet and sustainable development.
There were peculiar beliefs trailing our African heritage that forbids certain human interference with nature. We were told stories of forbidden forests, trees that must not be cut down, animals exempted from poaching, and rivers esteemed as sacred. Our ancestors’ farmlands would compulsorily be left fallow at some particular time of the year as tradition demands. Due to the dearth of scientific reasoning, we never asked why but followed these instructions to the letter. So far, so good, our adherence paid off as we barely recorded cataclysmic natural disasters.
Fast-forward to modern-day civilisation. Unrestrained human interactions with the Earth resulted in Earth’s instability. As far as we can remember, from previous great extinctions to dehumanising world wars to devastating natural disasters and global warming, from the great depression to financial crisis to the Ebola epidemic and currently the COVID-19 pandemic, humans have continuously impacted on the environment in more ways than we could imagine.
Let’s tune in to the narrative of a prolific Nigerian poet, dramatist, and literary critic as he expounds from the literary perspective what the Earth said.
For further reading on Environmental Racism, I recommend this book