- Anis Mojgani’s poem “Shab-e-Yalda” is named for a Persian festival observed on the winter solstice. Do you observe the longest night of the year? If so, how? What does it mean to you?
- In “Hotter, Drier, and Less Predictable,” Amanda Waldroupe talks with Oregon farmers and agronomists about how extreme weather caused by climate change is affecting their crops and how they are adapting for the future. How has extreme weather and drought affected plants and animals where you live? Have you or anyone you know made changes to what you grow in anticipation of a hotter, drier future?
- In “Not a Circle, Not a Line,” Susan DeFreitas writes that “the deep past” is more evident in the western United States than in the East, because “human beings have not managed to overwrite that larger sweep of history.” Do you agree? Is there a geological feature near where you live that makes the past feel present?
- In “Second Growth,” Lee van der Voo asks a young activist named Bramble what is lost when a forest is logged. Bramble answers: “Everything that lives here. It’s more than can be mapped or measured or witnessed through a purely material lens.” Is there a place—in Oregon or beyond—that you feel passionate about protecting? What about that place is meaningful to you? Is it, as van der Voo puts it, “the habitat, life, and spirit of [the] place,” or is it something else?
- In “Unstable Connections,” Caroline Gao writes about how the Internet has enabled her to build relationships and take advantage of opportunities that she could not in her immediate physical community, while at the same time presenting barriers to learning and connection for people with less access to money, time, and technology. Thinking of your own life, is there a time when technology has enabled you to make connections or learn something new, or made it more difficult to do so? What conditions made it easier or harder?
- In “Beyond Pigmentocracy,” Chance White Eyes and Rachel L. Cushman talk about their family’s experiences through first-person remembrances and third-person commentary. Why do you think they chose to write the article in this way? What, if anything, is revealed through the alternating styles of writing?
- In “How to Build a Kite,” Daniela Molnar writes about the experience of losing her home in the 2020 wildfires and explores the idea that in order to address grief, we must embrace ambiguity. At the end of the piece, she asks a series of questions: “What would happen if we loosened our grip on certainty and control? What voices might be clearer? What types of changes might we make?” Do you have answers to these questions?
Anis Mojgani is the Poet Laureate of Oregon. You can find more of his poems at thepianofarm.com.
The poem is named for the Persian midwinter festival. Here’s an interview with cookbook author Najmieh Batmanglij about Yalda Night.
Hotter, Drier, and Less Predictable
Oregon Climate Change Research Institute, Fifth Oregon Climate Assessment
Oregon State University, “Dry Farming Resources”
Not a Circle, Not a Line
Susan DeFreitas is the author of the novel Hot Season and editor of Dispatches from Anarres, a collection of stories written in tribute to Ursula K. Le Guin.
The Lathe of Heaven is a 1971 novel by Le Guin. It was adapted into a film by PBS in 1980.
Always Coming Home is a 1985 novel by Le Guin.
Lee Van der Voo, As the World Burns: The New Generation of Activists and the Landmark Legal Fight Against Climate Change (Timber Press, 2020)
Action Plan for Climate Adaptation and Resilience, USDA U.S. Department of Agriculture, August 2021
Earth First! Direct Action Manual (Earth First!, 2015)
“The ‘Comadre’ Project: An Asset-Based Design Approach to Connecting Low-Income Latinx Families to Out-of-School Learning Opportunities” CHI '19: Proceedings of the 2019 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
Virginia Eubanks, Automating Inequality: How High-Tech Tools Profile, Police, and Punish the Poor (St. Martin’s Press, 2018)
“From GenderMag to InclusiveMag: An Inclusive Design Meta-Method” IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages and Human Centric Computing, 2019
“Improving the Safety of Homeless Young People with Mobile Phones: Values, Form and Function” CHI '11: Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
“Income, race, and class: exploring socioeconomic differences in family technology use”
“‘Privacy is not for me, it’s for those rich women’: Performative Privacy Practices on Mobile Phones by Women in South Asia” SOUPS '18: Proceedings of the Fourteenth USENIX Conference on Usable Privacy and Security
Recommended reading about Chinook from Rachel Cushman:
- John Daehnke, Chinook Resilience (University of Washington Press, 2017)
- Rachel Cushman, John Daehnke, and Tony Johnson, “This Is What Makes Us Strong: Canoe Revitalization, Reciprocal Heritage, and the Chinook Indian Nation” in The Politics of the Canoe, Bruce Erickson ed. (University of Manitoba Press, 2021)
- Robert T. Boyd, Kenneth M. Ames and Tony A. Johnson, Chinookan Peoples of the Lower Columbia (University of Washington Press, 2015)
Eduardo Bonilla-Silva, “From bi-racial to tri-racial: Towards a new system of racial stratification in the USA”, Ethnic and Racial Studies, 2004
How to Build a Kite
Pauline Boss, “Navigating Loss Without Closure,” On Being (June 23, 2016)
Robin Wall Kimmerer, “Speaking of Nature,” Orion Magazine (June 12, 2017)
Vine Deloria, Jr., as cited in Jessica L. Horton, “Indigenous Artists against the Anthropocene.” Art Journal, Volume 76, Issue 2 (September 2017)
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