UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Kristina Douglass investigates the connections between the past and present, addressing questions about the co-evolution of people, climate and the environment. She was recently invited to talk about her work on the podcast "Mothers of Invention." The episode, "Million Dollar Questions," is now available. It features Douglass as she discusses her life’s work on colonization and climate in Madagascar.
“'Mothers of Invention' is written and produced by women I deeply admire,” Douglass said. “It was a wonderful opportunity to engage in important conversations about climate change, the ways it is impacting communities around the world and what can be done to build a sustainable and just future for all.”
Douglass is the Joyce and Doug Sherwin Early Career Professor in the Rock Ethics Institute and assistant professor of anthropology and African studies in the College of the Liberal Arts. She is also a faculty member in the Institutes of Energy and the Environment. Her work focuses on human-environment interactions on islands and in coastal regions, with an emphasis on Madagascar and the Western Indian Ocean.
She said she hopes listeners will learn about the important connections between the present climate crisis and a complex history of past human adaptation to climate change, historical roots of climate injustice and possibilities for reparations as society builds its future.
“As an archaeologist, I believe that we cannot move forward without a clearer understanding of our past,” she said.
The podcast focuses on feminist climate change solutions from, primarily, women from around the world. "Mothers of Invention" shares the stories of women and girls from diverse backgrounds who have been innovating from the front lines of climate change for generations.
“Being on the podcast was such a wonderful experience,” said Douglass. “Having a conversation with Mary Robinson, Maeve Higgins, Thimali Kodikara and the amazing production team was a lot of fun. These women are all leaders and activists doing important work for their communities and for our global community, and they do it with grace, sensitivity and an awesome sense of humor.”