Madagascar’s huge size, varying relief and climates, and long isolation make it a special place, with many plant and animal species found nowhere else on Earth. It is also a poster child for environmental destruction. Forests are disappearing at a rapid rate, and all the largest-bodied animal species have gone extinct over the past thousand years. Can people and nature find ways to thrive together in Madagascar, or is it just one more manifestation of our species driving the world to ruin? This lecture draws upon recent evidence to illuminate Madagascar’s environmental history, and explores how stories reflect and shape our worldview and help determine what lies ahead. The new story I tell suggests that Madagascar’s future is not without hope, and that the global story of our species does not have to end in disaster.
FOLLOWING PRESIDENT MICHAEL A. MCROBBIE'S GUIDELINES ON OUR CAMPUS RESPONSE TO COVID-19, DAME ALISON RICHARD'S VISIT HAS BEEN CANCELED. WE HOPE TO RESCHEDULE THIS VISIT FOR THE 2021-22 ACADEMIC YEAR.