by Kristan Majors
The Emory University 2023 Climate Plan encouraged the Office of Sustainability Initiatives (OSI) and the Emory Libraries to team up for a climate and mental health book exhibit. Recent OSI survey data found “the challenge of climate change can weigh heavily on the Emory Community.” Anna Brachey, OSI’s Climate Solutions Fellow, further explains: “As the Office of Sustainability Initiatives and Emory’s Climate Action Task Force engaged in the year-long process of crafting Emory’s 2023 Climate Action Plan, we were grateful to see that many of Emory’s students, faculty, staff, and community members are deeply passionate about our shared climate and environment. While this passion is rooted in a love for our planet, I know how difficult and emotionally taxing it can be to engage in climate work and exist in an uncertain and ever-changing world. In response to this challenge, we are so happy to have created a learning space dedicated to climate hope in partnership with Emory’s Libraries. We anticipate that the books and resources on display in Fostering Climate Hope can help our community protect its optimism and nurture its wellbeing, even in the face of climate anxiety.”
Everyone is invited to visit the book exhibit Fostering Climate Hope and check out a book. The exhibit, which will be on display from November 8 to December 15, 2023, is located on the main floor of the Woodruff Library in the new “doughnut” shaped display shelving near suite 217. We also have an Emory Libraries online exhibit to promote relevant e-books, streaming documentaries, and university offices and support services.
If you only have a few minutes in Woodruff, look for the display of QR codes to some of the e-books or take an exhibit bookmark to find the books anytime.
The United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC ) in 2022 outlines how mental health is impacted by climate change. The point of our book exhibit is to acknowledge this anxiety, grief, and anger while sharing ways scholars, therapists, authors, artists, activists, gardeners, and faith leaders have found for healing, moving forward, and building community. The OSI, Emory Libraries, and other members of the Emory community helped us narrow down our book exhibit choices to highlight about 75 titles on environmental psychology, nature fiction, mindfulness, ecopoetry, environmental health, religion, community gardening, meditation, and philosophy.
Many people were involved in this collaborative exhibit. First, thank you to the members of the Emory Museum and Libraries’ Environmental Sustainability Committee and the OSI interns for enthusiastically bringing this collaborative project to the Emory Libraries. Specifically, we want to recognize the work provided by Anna Brachey, Natalia Freeze, Lucia Buscemi, Natalie Heimerle-Warthan, Julie Newton, Dawn Francis-Chewning, Chris Palazzolo, Sofia Slutskaya, Sage Theune, Patrick Buckley, and Kathy Dixson.