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Date Sat, 10 Jun 2006 10:37:55 +0300

[Here is the final announcement for the International Conference on
Elisée Reclus to be held in New Orleans in the fall. The deadline
for proposals for conference presentations has been extended
through mid-June, but those planning to attend are urged to submit
at least a preliminary proposal as soon as possible. Would you please
forward this announcement to anyone you think might be interested? Thanks.]
Conference Announcement/Final Call For Papers HUMANITY AND THE EARTH/L'HOMME ET LA TERRE:
October 27-29, 2006 --- Loyola University -- New Orleans, LA USA
Last year marked the 175th anniversary of the birth of Elisée
Reclus and the 100th anniversary of his death. A conference in New
Orleans scheduled on the occasion of this double anniversary was
postponed because of the destruction caused by Hurricane Katrina,
but it has been rescheduled for this fall. At that time we will gather to
discuss the life and work of Reclus and to investigate the ways in
which his legacy is relevant to our world today. The conference is
planned to coincide with the New Orleans Bookfair, and conference
scheduling will allow time for participants to attend that event also.

Reclus is considered by many to be the greatest geographer of his
age and is generally recognized as a pioneering figure in the
development of social geography. His eighteen-thousand page
Nouvelle Géographie Universelle was a monumental intellectual
achievement which, as geographer Gary Dunbar observes, "for a
generation was to serve as the ultimate geographical authority" and
constituted "probably the greatest individual writing feat in the
history of geography." His work culminated in the
thirty-five-hundred-page L'Homme et la Terre, a grand synthesis of
his ideas concerning geography, history, philosophy, politics,
sociology, religion, anthropology, and many other fields.

Reclus, perhaps more than any other 19th century social thinker,
contributed to the development of a comprehensive ecological world
view. His focus on our place in nature is expressed in the opening
words of L'Homme et la Terre: "Humanity is Nature becoming
self-conscious." Reclus can be seen as a founder of both social
ecology and political ecology, inasmuch as he carefully traced the
interconnections between the social, the political and the ecological,
and he saw the solution to ecological problems as necessitating a
wide-ranging, and indeed revolutionary political and economic
transformation of society.

In addition, Reclus was a major social philosopher and one of the
foremost theorists of anarchism. His analysis of the state, capitalism,
technology, racism, patriarchy, authoritarian culture and the
domination of nature constitutes perhaps the most far-ranging
critique of domination in the history of anarchist thought. He was
also an important figure in the development of urbanism, was one of
the most original theorists of libertarian education, and made
important contributions to ethical vegetarianism and the
consideration of our treatment of other species.

Finally, Reclus lived an extraordinary life as a scientist, scholar,
revolutionary and human being. He saw all his diverse activities as
integral expressions of his commitment to the struggle for human
freedom and of his concern for the good of humanity and other living
beings. Biographers have described his life as an inspiring example
of compassion, solidarity, egalitarianism, dedication, humility,
intellectual curiosity, joy in living, and a deep love of humanity and

Conference presentations, which should be in English, may address
any area of the legacy of Reclus, the person, the revolutionary, the
geographer, and the social and ecological philosopher. Requests for
further information and proposals for presentations (which are due
by June 15), should be sent, preferably by email, to:

John Clark

Box 79

Loyola University

New Orleans, LA 70118

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