Teaching Sustainability Using the History of Ishi: Compelling Research Questions through Native American Wisdom

By Peter Weiss-Penzias.

Published by The Sustainability Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Ishi, last surviving member of the Yahi tribe, models an emotional state, a spirituality and an adaptability necessary for sustainability.

Keywords: Sustainability, Ishi, Native American, Indian, Nature, Spirituality, Adaptability, Genocide

International Journal of Environmental, Cultural, Economic and Social Sustainability, Volume 1, Issue 1, pp.115-120. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 812.123KB).

Dr. Peter Weiss-Penzias

I grew up in Montague, California (pop. 1300), a rural community in the hills near Mt. Shasta, California, where I developed an appreciation of nature through homesteading and backpacking with my parents. I attended college at Southern Oregon University and University of California, Santa Cruz, earning my bachelor's of science degree in Chemistry with honors in 1988. My work on spectroscopy in understanding molecular structure was published in the journal Biochemistry (1988). From 1988-1990 I worked for Toxscan Inc. an analytical laboratory that tested agricultural samples for pesticides. It was during this time of living in Santa Cruz, California, that I became intensely aware of environmental issues affecting the Earth. In the fall of 1990, I entered the University of Washington doctoral program in chemistry in order to study global climate related issues. My work on the chemical cycling of carbonyl sulfide between the oceans and the atmosphere is published in the Journal of Geophysical Research (1995). After receiving my doctorate in 1995, I decided to pursue a career in teaching and began a stint as a lecturer at several Seattle-area community colleges. I taught chemistry, biology, and environmental science. From the fall of 2000 up to the present, I have occupied two positions at the University of Washington, Bothell, one as a lecturer in the Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences Department, and the other as a postdoctoral researcher. In the last 4 years I have taught a series of environment-related to undergraduates and have been involved in atmospheric research on global air pollutants (published in Environmental Science and Technology). My personal life revolves around my wife and daughter, and playing folk music at local venues. I also enjoy gardening, gathering wild foods, and spending as much time outside as I can.


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