||The Cold War: An Environmental History
Vortrag: John R. McNeill, Ph.D.
Professor of History, Interim Director of the Mortara Center for International Studies, Georgetown University
The Cold War (1945-91) is remembered as a global political struggle featuring the USA and the USSR, one that threatened to plunge the world into catastrophic war. But it was also an ecological process. The superpowers and their allies felt anxieties and entertained ambitions that drove them to try to harness nature to the fullest. While in the deeper past states often tried to do the same thing, after 1945 the capacity to control nature seemed almost unlimited, inspiring more grandiose agendas to bend nature to political purposes. This lecture focuses on the Green Revolution in agriculture, on transportation infrastructure, and on nuclear weapons programs, all seen as Cold War projects with widespread and enduring environmental consequences.