Although this event has passed, you can still purchase a digital pass to view it through April 28 at 7:30 p.m. (PDT). The event will be available to watch until 12:01 a.m. on April 29.
As a botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer has been trained to ask questions of nature with the tools of science. As a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, she embraces the notion that plants and animals are our oldest teachers. In Braiding Sweetgrass, Kimmerer brings these two lenses of knowledge together to take us on “a journey that is every bit as mythic as it is scientific, as sacred as it is historical, as clever as it is wise” (Elizabeth Gilbert). Q&A moderated by Dr. Christina Roberts.
Robin Wall Kimmerer is a mother, scientist, decorated professor, and enrolled member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation. She is the author of Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teaching of Plants, which has earned Kimmerer wide acclaim.
Drawing on her life as an indigenous scientist, a mother, and a woman, Kimmerer shows in Braiding Sweetgrass how other living beings—asters and goldenrod, strawberries and squash, salamanders, algae, and sweetgrass—offer us gifts and lessons, even if we’ve forgotten how to hear their voices. In a rich braid of reflections that range from the creation of Turtle Island to the forces that threaten its flourishing today, she circles toward a central argument: that the awakening of a wider ecological consciousness requires the acknowledgment and celebration of our reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world. For only when we can hear the languages of other beings will we be capable of understanding the generosity of the earth, and learn to give our own gifts in return.
Kimmerer’s first book, Gathering Moss: A Natural and Cultural History of Mosses, was awarded the John Burroughs Medal for outstanding nature writing, and her other work has appeared in Orion, Whole Terrain, and numerous scientific journals. She tours widely and has been featured on NPR’s On Being with Krista Trippett and in 2015 addressed the general assembly of the United Nations on the topic of “Healing Our Relationship with Nature.”
Kimmerer lives in Syracuse, New York, where she is a SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor of Environmental Biology, and the founder and director of the Center for Native Peoples and the Environment.
Dr. Christina Ann Roberts (Aaniiih and Nakoda), our Q&A moderator for the evening, calls the Coast Salish lands that have nurtured her life home. She graduated from Nathan Hale High School in Seattle and attended the University of Washington as an undergraduate before embarking on her graduate school journey at the University of Arizona. She joined the faculty at Seattle University in 2007 and currently serves as the inaugural director of Indigenous Peoples Institute.