Cal Maritime Faculty Part of Free Lecture Series on History, Literature, and Conservation of the Sea
(Vallejo, California – March 16, 2018) – The National Park Service and California State University Maritime Academy are partnering for the second year to present a series of free Blue Room Lectures, featuring academic and independent historians. The Blue Room is located at the east end of the San Francisco Maritime Museum, located at 900 Beach Street within San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park.
March 17 at 1 PM - Does the Whale's Magnitude Diminish?
Maritime Labor and the Environment in Melville's Moby-Dick
For nineteenth-century whalers, the resources of the sea seemed infinite and impossible to deplete. Amy Parsons will discuss how Moby-Dick frames the environmental and human cost of the industry's tremendous riches during "the golden age of whaling."
Amy Parsons is an associate professor in the Department of Culture and Communication at California State University Maritime Academy. Her primary areas of research and teaching are the interactions between transnational capital, maritime labor, race and sexuality in nineteenth-century sea fiction.
May 19 at 1 PM - The Primary Seat of Derangement
Tracing a Line from the Brain, to the Stomach, to the Sea
Ian Copestake will focus his talk on historical medical research in the 19th century that investigated links between mental illness, severe digestive complaints and the curative effects of the sea voyage. He looks in particular at the consequences of research on this topic by Dr. John Ware on the life and work of his patient, Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Dr. Ian Copestake is editor of the William Carlos Williams Review and president of the William Carlos Williams Society. He is an independent scholar based in Frankfurt am Main.
July 21 at 1 PM - Whaler, Traitor, Coward, Spy
William Rotch, the Quaker Ethic, and the Spirit of Capitalism
William Rotch had the unusual distinction of being accused of treason four times by three governments in two decades. Sarah Crabtree's talk reexamines these explosive charges, asking whether his accusers were more upset about his troublesome religion or his thriving business. Rotch's opposition to war led him to explore new whaling grounds and fishy business practices, making him one of the wealthiest and most hated men in America.
Sarah Crabtree is an associate professor of history at San Francisco State University. She is the author of Holy Nation: The Quaker Transatlantic Ministry in an Age of Revolution as well as several articles on transatlantic travel in the Age of Sail. She is currently at work on a graphic history of William Rotch.
September 15 at 1 PM - Autonomous Vessels at Cal Maritime
Mike Holden's talk will focus on the robotic boats used by students at Cal Maritime and their applications in education and oceanographic measurements.
Michael Holden is a professor of mechanical engineering at California State University Maritime Academy. With a background in aerospace engineering, he worked in the drone aircraft industry before starting his teaching career. He works with his students to design, build, and operate simple autonomous boats for engineering and oceanographic research.
November 10 at 1 PM - Mariners and the Eastern Pacific
The Cycle of Seafaring from Sail to Steam
Jennifer Metz will explore sailing experiences from the mid-19th century to the mid-20th century, such as the process of signing on, work and leisure aboard ship, and activities while in port. Her talk will also evaluate to what extent race, class, and other demographic factors shaped ship-side work and shore-side sailor interactions.
Jennifer Metz is a lecturer of American History, Maritime History, and Politics in the department of Global Studies and Maritime Affairs at California State University Maritime Academy. She is a recent fellow of the National Endowment for the Humanities Munson Institute of Maritime Studies at Mystic Seaport, Connecticut. Some of her professional projects include developing new history content and pedagogy for the K-12 level, writing for K-12 textbook curriculum, and contributing to public history projects in Bay Area maritime history.
Located at the west end of Fisherman's Wharf, San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park includes a fleet of historic ships, visitor center, maritime museum, maritime research center, and the Aquatic Park Historic District. For more information, please call 415-447-5000 or visit nps.gov/safr, Twitter @SFMaritimeNPS, and Facebook @SanFranciscoMaritimeNHP.