2nd half of “Nature”- Brianna Graber

September 25, 2018

Book thoughts:

Quotes/topics worth discussing:

  • Pg. 114 “Amenity” —> discuss thoughts on the word and what qualifies as one
  • Pg. 127 Nature being good or not
  • The greening of socialism
  • German Green phenomena
  • Pg. 178 Designer animals
  • Old and new nature
  • Darwinism

Overall, I think the second half of this book was not as vivid as the first part. It was intensely dry but had good viewpoints from Coates. I appreciated the historical references and examples from eras of history. I feel like the second half did not have as many specific textual examples/quotes from and era and it was more comparisons of nature, new nature, old nature, pastoral views, etc.

My favorite chapter was chapter chapter 9 because it talked about real issues in the present world and past world. It gave issues like global warming, animals and souls, talked about ecology and the new and old nature. I think this chapter (possibly, other than the animals future thing) plays a huge role in today and is a huge ongoing topic(s). It is also something we have been talking about from day 1 in class. I also think this chapter had a lot of “pullable” quotes to discuss on the topics I mentioned above.

I also think chapter 6 was also important. The thing that stood out to me the most in this chapter was Clare’s environmentalist views through his poetry. It went from dark to darker back and forth. This shows that the ongoing argument of what nature is is even in poetry. Clare does an interesting job at illustrating this in his deep thought.

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Project update:

This week was rather slow project wise. I met with Janelle last week and we discussed writing a TPG and the new process of the project now. I will write a TPG and work on order and putting in the storm drain nets. Then I have to do  research with my grant. I have research questions formulating and in the works right now. I am also working on a mini project proposal for the professors I am meeting with.

The step that I am working on right now is getting in contact and setting up a meeting with 3 different professors to ask for help on my research provided I get the grant. All three have responded and I am setting up times with them. I am also going to Mingo Park tomorrow with Janelle to take pictures and measurements on the drains.


Neon fishies

In the Brazilian Archipelago of St. Paul’s a “dazzling” and colorful fish species was found. It’s name is Tosanoides aphrodites. the males are bright pink and yellow. and the females are spotted orange. It inhibits rocks and reefs in the “twilight zone” approximately 400 feet down. Scientists also found a six gill shark that was ten feet long near the camera they used to see the fish. The fish was found in twilight ecosystems that are actually unique.


Ancient mice

In tropical caves near Queensland, two ancient species of mice were found in tropical caves. The fossils were from Webb’s short tailed mice and Irvin’s short tailed mice. Scientists say these fossils can help predict environmental changes over time. Findings showed the caves went through a local extinction period of rainforests close to 280,000 years ago.

Week 6 – Coates’ Nature part 2 + Environmental News Item

September 25, 2018

Thoughts on Nature:

The rest of this book continued to bring up various good points about nature and the ways in which we communicate through nature. While the book overall has not been the most exciting and was oftentimes boring and slow, I still enjoyed Peter Coates’ point of view on the matter. I specifically liked chapters 6 and 9, with 6 discussing our views of nature as a landscape and a work of art and 9 bringing up issues with nature in the future. I think that both of these chapters were informative in the sense that we see what we want to see in nature and can discover the art found in nature in our own individual ways, and that in order to preserve this art we must look toward the future and consider the earth’s well-being.

Chapter 6 most definitely analyzed the historical context of nature and how much we have shaped its definition, as well as how we’ve changed the landscape. It discusses Native Americans being forced to leave their homes behind in order to preserve nature, along with the poetry of John Clare that shaped the way we view today’s radical environmentalism. The ever-present dichotomy between landscape of leisure and landscape of work was a heavily discussed topic of choice considering it is necessary to realize the drawbacks of having such a system. There is a passage from the book that connects to this topic and portrays the difference between work and play:

“But the new parks, besides being larger than their predecessors, were more than just hunting grounds. Grazing, hay-making and timber harvesting were increasingly prominent in functions by the seventeenth century, and deer were often killed for food rather than sport. … Whereas the designation of a Royal Forest in the Middle Ages grafted deer and deer hunting onto existing land uses such as grazing and tree-cutting, park creation – ever since the establishment of the first Norman hunting preserves – involved a mixture of physical displacement and annulment of users’ rights based on common law. … During one raid, they uprooted the boundary fence (pale) and recently planted walnut and apple trees. Not only villages but also productive farmland, roads and other public rights of way were obliterated.” (115)

Chapter 9 was a decent way to conclude the book. I appreciated the thought of treating the earth as a single organism in the hope to convince people that it is a living, functioning being that deserves to be taken care of and respected. It is important to assess the damages that have impacted the planet thus far, and Coates does a good job of addressing these issues.

Overall, I did not despise this book, but I did not particularly care for it either. It was extremely wordy and oftentimes difficult to read. However, I did appreciate Coates’ viewpoints and enjoyed reading a few of the chapters, but other chapters were extremely boring. All in all, not a bad read.


Environmental news item:

Cat-Born Parasite May Prompt People to Start Businesses

Toxoplasma gondii, a protozoan parasite that infects cats and rats, may subtly prompt people to start businesses. Research has shown that those infected with the parasite are more risk-prone, similar to rats that get infected with the parasite as well (rats will walk right up to the cat showing no fear due to the pathogen infecting their brains). If people with T. gondii are willing to take more risks, then this may extend to decisions about whether to start a company.

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Shayla Scheitler – GEOG 360: Week 6

September 24, 2018

Reading: Nature (part 2)

  • Human attention to aesthetics of nature led to altering nature into appealing fixtures, & development of detailed architecture.
  • “As capitalism besieged the natural world, nature was increasingly defined as these places ‘where nature was not.”
  • “The price of a comparatively small patch of landscape beauty & composure might include more extensive ugliness & environmental dislocation elsewhere.”
  • Romantic ideal of resuming contact with a re-enchanted nature + the emergence of ecological science = the sprouting of interest in the status of nature to us.
  • “The belief that people are free by nature but enslaved by man inspired a range of causes from medieval peasant revolts to the 18th century anti-slavery movement.”
  • “The reasoning that, if nature is good, then human nature must also be good was hotly debated…”
    • Discuss ‘human nature’ versus ‘nature.’ 
  • Similar to Fanaticism of the Apocalypse in the sense that it addresses the radical environmentalists who believed that humans were burdens to nature.
    • “….approached history as a foul deviation from nature’s original plan for liberty, equality, & fraternity.”
    • Primitivism – idealizing nature before commerce & industry.
    • Do you think this attitude can be compared to older generations’ reluctance to technological advances?
  • “To me, high mountains are a feeling, but the hum of human cities torture.”
    • What does this mean?
  • “….for transcendentalists, human spirituality was the element of highest value in the universe, leaving nature as a conduit, a raw material to assist the human spirit in its quest for perfection”
    • Do you think this was evident earlier in human history, or that it was a development of the Industrial Age?
  • Also addresses the debate of human superiority.
    • “Thus at every step we are reminded we by no means rule over nature like a conqueror over a foreign people, like someone standing outside nature, but that we, with flesh, blood, & brain belong to nature & exist in nits midst.”
    • How do people argue that we’re superior to other organisms?
      • Imagination
      • Souls
      • Communication
      • Language
      • Cognitive thinking
    • What is your stance of human superiority to nature/other organisms?
  • Environmentalism affected by social class, political positions, & economic values.
  • Social justice environmentalists’ “goal is to redeem the city by re-conceptualizing ‘nature’ & ‘the environment’ as people’s ordinary daily living, working, & playing spaces. The desired outcome is an idea of nature that includes people & their activities & redefines environmental problems so that they become inseparable from issues of socio-economic deprivation & racial discrimination.”
    • Environmental racism.
  • “…they argue that woman’s biological functions & nurturing responsibilities heighten their sensibility to suffering & give them a natural role as planetary protectors & housekeepers.”
    • How does this make you feel? Can you find any truth in this statement or is it just blatantly sexist?
  • “Nature also justified Nazi views on sexual orientation, racial purity, & women’s status.”
    • How did you interpret the section talking about nature & Nazis?
  • “There are no shared, universal threats – different groups privilege those confronting their own particular interests.”
    • Difference in our interest in environmentalism versus 3rd world countries.
  • “….we underestimate nature’s capacity to recover from such catastrophes.”
    • To what extent do you believe this to be true?

Environmental News:

New battery has potential to convert carbon dioxide from energy plants into a solid mineral carbonate, which would ultimately reduce greenhouse gas emissions, & thus global warming. Te battery is made from lithium metal, carbon, & an electrolyte.

Project Updates:

Possible date/time – Wednesday, October 5th from 7pm-9pm.

All materials collected & sanitized.

Week 5? 6?

September 19, 2018

Nature (1st Half)

p. 14- “Topophilia” to have an emotional connection to the physical environment, particularly a certain type, like a forest or ocean. This becomes an issue where certain kinds of charismatic environments are favored over less breath-taking landscapes.

p. 16. Ecofeminism – a facet of intersectional feminism where they believe the Earth has been mistreated due to the same patriarchal methods and behaviors that oppresses non-men genders. I have written an entire paper on ecofeminism and it still escapes me. This is one of my favorite things and we can talk more about this if anyone is interested.


Curbside Compost and Innovative Organics Recycling 

Kait Aromy, Juniper Deitering, and Janelle Valdinger

This project intends to establish Ray Leard’s company, Innovative Organics Recycling, in Delaware, OH. Innovative Organics Recycling is already established in Westerville and Columbus, Dublin, and a lot of other places, but he is looking to expand and bring his services here. This process has three distinct phases that will take place during this semester as part of this project. Their working titles are Curbside Composting, Shaking Hands, and Sustainable Recruitment.

The first phase, Curbside Composting, is to establish compost bins during the Farmers’ Market. The Market takes place on Wednesday evenings from 3-6, and Saturday mornings from 9-12, in downtown Delaware. However, Mr. Leard was clear that he wants to be present on Saturdays, and not Wednesdays. This should last the remainder of the Farmers’ Market Season, October 27th. If it goes well, would transition into use during First Fridays, also in downtown Delaware. As of now, it seems like it will be a year-long thing. The pre-consumer compost will be processed and put to good use, diverting all of the food waste from landfills. 

The second phase, tentatively titled “Shaking Hands”, is the vital part. The second phase is when the transition from farmers’ market to restaurants takes place. In this section of the project, we will speak with owners of downtown real estate and small businesses, surveying their interest in sustainable business practices, as well as their waste profile. Once we gage their interest, and what kind of waste each business generates, we will campaign to the business people of Delaware about Innovative Organics Recycling. Mr. Leard is offering the supplies and training for a 2 week waste audit for any restaurant and is offering the service of food waste recycling to all of the restaurants.    

The third phase, Sustainable Recruitment, is my other favorite part. This is the stage in which we construct an iron-clad recruitment plan, and ensure the sustainability of this project. This is important on a lot of levels. For one, to make sure that Innovative Organics Recycling can continue to be successful and have a presence in Delaware. The second level is so that the small businesses in Delaware can continue to successfully reduce their impact on the environment. The next level is so that Ohio Wesleyan can strengthen its relationship with Delaware. I think it would be amazing if at least one student from Ohio Wesleyan works with Innovative Organics Recycling for the years to come.

To ensure this happens, we will be creating advertisements and marketing materials to recruit students. We will also establish a hiring process that ensures only the most committed and enthusiastic students are a part of this project (for the sake of OWU and downtown Delaware’s relationship, as well as the students’ well being and enjoyment of the process). This will most likely manifest itself as Innovative Organics Recycling becoming an option for the OWU work study program, or just one of the many available off-campus jobs. This will, of course, most likely be one of the more appealing jobs because of its small-hourly commitment and seasonal nature.

This project has other phases outside of this course, with which I will proceed as part of an internship or independent study if all goes well.

  • Initial Meeting 9/28/18, 12:45pm 
    • This is the meeting where Mr. Leard and I were introduced
    • we learned that we were on very different pages in terms of understanding this project
    • Main Component:
      • Resume and Cover Letter
      • Map of Farmers’ Market
  • Writing a Proposal to City Hall
    • Janelle will help me write a proposal to City Hall so that we can join the Farmers’ Market
    • Meeting with head of Downtown Delaware on Tuesday (subject to change)
  • Training Day (Oct. 6th or 13th)
    • I am to go to another Farmers’ Market with Mr. Leard and see how it’s done.
    • This will most likely be in Dublin
  • During the Farmer’s Market (October 13th or 20th)
    • This is the stage during the Farmers’ Market a place, a drop off zone, any paying customers can deposit compost.
    • i will also be recruiting customers
    • the compost will be parked behind J. Gumbo’s until Mr. Leard can come pick it up. 
    • This part will be the recurring job position.
    • Equipment will be provided but transportation will not. 
    • Main Component:
      • Time Commitments on Saturday 8:30-12:30pm
      • Physically moving the compost
      • Being personable with the public
      • possible monetary responsibility 
      • set up and take down
      • storage of equipment
  • Shaking Hands
    • This is the part where the actual business proposals and deals will happen, if all goes well 
    • Most likely talking with landlords
    • This is the part which determines the success of Innovative Organics Recycling in Delaware.
    • Main Component:
      • Meetings
      • Phone calls
      • Presentations
  • Sustainable Recruitment
    • This is the part where we create long-term plan
    • new people will need to create a resume, but not complete an application 
    • Mr. Leard wants students to be a part of this as customers and wants a drop off zone somewhere on campus 
      • this will most likely manifest as a project next semester
    • Main Component:
      • Marketing materials
      • Detailed plan, living document


Environmental News:

Vulcan is Real Now!

There is a sunlike star, HD 26965, that has a recently discovered “super-Earth”! It’s only 16 light years away, which is a cosmic hop, skip, and jump. This is the closest super-Earth to us, which makes it even more exciting. It’s also the same location Gene Roddenberry chose to set Spock’s home planet, Vulcan. This means, Vulcan is now cosmically cannon.

The most interesting part is that the planet is in the habitable zone from HD 26965, where there is possibly water, and where there is water, there is most likely some biological form. Looking for water, hopefully in liquid form, and then searching for life are the next steps for astronomers.

If there is water and it is habitable, it is also twice the size of Earth. Vulcan would make a viable “Planet B.”

The only other issue is that temperatures on half of the planet are too high to be habitable, so we would have to move in on the dark side or underground.

We should probably stick to saving Earth, but how cool?

me and spock

This article inspired me to dig up this picture from high school. I think it’s a good illustration of how exciting this news is to me.
Read the original article here:





Reading and Environmental news (Kayla)

September 19, 2018

Coates’ Nature was a pretty dense, and a little difficult to read. He gave a pretty thorough discussion on the Western development and historical views on nature and the attachment of morals to it, largely through religion.

Environmental News

Supreme Court Justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh is going through hearings to determine if he will become a Supreme Court justice. One of the topics he has to answer is environmental policy. He may have a different interpretation of previously decided court cases, such as ones involving the Clean Air Act.

Nature- week 1

September 19, 2018

Peter Coates gives us a history of the view of nature by the western world, complete with its history. He blieves that the history of our perception of nature reflects human thoughts and he does an amazing job in justifying it. He denotes five categories of nature throughout history, physical place, the essence of nature, nature as a Phenomena, as inspiration or a guiding principle, and as the conceptual opposite of culture.

Although this book was very academic and very text book like I did enjoy pieces of it. I enjoyed learning about the history and how our view of nature has changed. I especially enjoyed learning about the Norman forest law for medieval times, when I took a medieval literature class the royal forest was made to seem like such a nature preserve that only the best game would inhabit and that only the best nobles could hunt within it. When the laws fell the forests were plundered, making me think of the unsoiled forest becoming more modern such as many forests today are.

Another part I found extremely interesting was at the start of chapter 4, when “mankind experieced a decisive alienation from nature between the Renaissance and the scientific revoltuion” p65. THe point made seemed to be that humans no longer found nature valuable if it was not valuable to them. This is like the approach we have taken today, nature is not valuable to us unless we charge for parks, harvest its resources or have some form of monetary gain from it. How many trees have fell within forests because it is over crowding, when it is likely there is a demand for the wood, and they find “crowded areas” removing larger trees, to give smaller trees “space”. On Page 69 many people within the Renaissance time period wanted to figure out how things worked and better them for humans, to make the world in which we live better in some way, but who can do it better than mother nature herself.


Environmental news

Unprecentdented ice loss in Russian Ice Cap,


This ice cap went from sliding 2 inches a day to more than 82 feet a day, which is very alarming, as it is in a higher lattitude. The ice cap is drastically thinning and moving at a higher rate than anything seen before, they believe this might indicate that the polar ice caps will soon follow the same trend.  Instead of a slow response to the warming of the globe, the question now is, if they do how follow this trend how much will sea levels rise, and how much time is there to prepare and reduce the chances of this happening? The study brings the idea of rising sea levels much closer to home than previous studies.

Project Proposal-Ashley

September 19, 2018

Title: E. Coli testing in Delaware Run

Participants: Ashley McCracken, Janelle Valdinger, Caroline Cicerchi

Description of project: Del-Co water obtains samples from the Delaware Run to test for presence of E. coli to ensure it falls within EPA guidelines for safe use parameters. This project hopes to garner student interest so testing can be more consistent and more thorough.

Project outline blurb:

For this project it is expected to submit a SIP grant to obtain funding to get more of the quanti-tray tests as well as work closely with the City of Delaware, Ohio Wesleyan University, and Del Co water to continue testing as well as to set parameters. The ideal testing months are May- October with an average of five tests per month from the five sample sites.  The plan for this project at current is to submit a SIP grant, upon approval buy testing materials and try to get a round of tests in before the end of October.  The project would then switch to a methodology approach to get interest through the University, so it continues following this fall, perhaps with a summer internship.

Update: project
rewrite methods, do some minor research to begin creation of clear methodology and testing procdures


  1. Cicerchi, Caroline. City of Delaware Watershed/Sustainability Coordinator.

-Caroline is helping with arranging the use of the lab at the city as well as providing guide lines for their current testing method.

  1. Del Co water, http://delcowater.org/

– Del Co is offering help and lab facilities for water testing

  1. City of Delaware, http://www.delawareohio.net/about-the-public-utilities-department/public-utilities-services-programs/

– The website provides a more detailed map of the Delware run as well as the opprutinity to see storm drains and places where influx of storm drain water may be present.

  1. Ohio EPA Guidelines for E. Coli, https://www.epa.ohio.gov/Portals/35/documents/ecoliFS.pdf

Provides the guidelines for what is the safe levels for presence of E. coli in recreational waters.

  1. Quanti-Tray systems, https://www.idexx.com/en/water/water-products-services/quanti-tray-system/

-provides background and pricing information for the E. coli quanti- tray testing systems.

clouds country daylight grass

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