The next lecture in the "Carbon Nations" series is coming up on February 5. Professor Timothy Mitchell of Columbia University will be giving a talk entitled, "Carbon Democracy: Political Power in the Age of Oil", at 4:00 PM in Smith-Buonnano 106. Professor Mitchell wrote a book of the same title, Carbon Democracy: Political Power in the Age of Oil, published with Verso Books in 2011. His study examines the political consequences of global dependence on oil, both in regions such as the Middle East, which rely upon revenues from oil production, and in the places that have the greatest demand for energy.
The "Carbon Nations" series of six lectures in 2014-2015 is designed to do something important but rare: bring historians into debates about energy and climate change. Focusing largely on the U.S. and U.S. corporations abroad, from the mid-nineteenth century to the present, Carbon Nations asserts a crucial premise: the carbon-based economy is a historical creation, a product of human culture and politics. Its transformation into something new thus requires a deep engagement with the culture and politics, as much as with the science and technology, of energy. The series has been organized by Robert Self, Royce Family Chair of Teaching Excellence and Professor of History.