Saturday Sunset Series Event
Saturday October 6, 2012 7:30 PM
Robber’s Roost Bookstore, Torrey, Utah

Steven Peck and George Handley, both BYU Professors will discuss “The Enchanted Landscape: Stewardship and the Creation.”

Places become dear to us through familiarity but also through experiences of defamiliarization, or experiences of enchantment, when what we thought we knew or understood about a place is transformed by deeper levels of perception and imagination. Science, religion, and literature are all vital methods for gaining these deeper appreciations for the strangeness and wonder of what surrounds us. This presentation, by novelist and biologist Steven Peck and writer and literary critic George Handley, both of Brigham Young University, will explore the role these three domains of knowledge–science, religion, and literature–have played in their exploration of their most sacred and personal landscapes, Moab and Provo respectively. The aim of this presentation, which will combine readings from their recent publications and discussions of their experiences as teachers and citizens in Utah, is to explore the ways in which Utah might become a more fertile ground for a stronger commitment to sustainability.

George B. Handley teaches Humanities and Comparative Literature at Brigham Young University and is the author of Home Waters: A Year of Recompenses on the Provo River (U of U Press, 2010), a book that combines memoir, nature writing, LDS theology, and environmental history. He is also the author of numerous essays on the environment and the co-editor of Postcolonial Ecologies: Literatures of the Environment (Oxford 2011) and, with Steve Peck, of Stewardship and the Creation: LDS Perspectives on the Environment (BYU 2005). Among his various civic activities, he serves as the Chair of the Executive Board of Utah Interfaith Power and Light, an interfaith organization devoted to fighting climate change; on the Board of LDS Earth Stewardship; and on the Provo City Sustainability and Natural Resources Committee.

Steven L. Peck is an evolutionary ecologist who teaches History and Philosophy of Science and Bioethics at Brigham Young University. He is the Science Editor for the journal Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought. His publishing history includes lots of scientific work including articles in American NaturalistNewsweekEvolutionTrends in Ecology and EvolutionBiological Theory, Agriculture and Human Values, and Biology & Philosophy. He is also an award winning writer and poet. His magic realism novel, The Scholar of Moab, published by Torrey House Press was just named a Eric Hoffer/Montaigne Medal Finalist and the Association of Mormon Letters Best Novel of 2011.