Political Science | Public Law & Policy: Pol of Wilderness & Public Land
Y665 | 26430 | Tilton
This section meets with Y661
As midwesterners, we sometimes fail to appreciate how controversial
the politics of national parks and public lands can be. In this
course we will briefly examine the history of public lands and
wilderness policy, read some of the philosophic champions of
wilderness, and survey current issues and policy. I hope to have a
couple of distinguished visitors from other universities and to
arrange an outing to the Deam Wilderness (Indiana's only wilderness).
Some of our central issues will be: What land gets set aside as
national parks or wilderness, and why? How has the federal domain
evolved and how do the holdings of the Forest Service, the National
Park Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and other federal
agencies affect the politics of states and the nation as a whole?
How has the preservationist idea evolved? How well does the national
government succeed in preserving ecosystems? What is "wilderness" and
how should it be managed? How much should there be? What sort of
constituency is there for national parks and wilderness and what is
its future? Students will be expected to contribute to the
discussion of these issues and to produce a research paper on an
issue of this sort. I will try to set a good example by reporting on
my own research into the fascinating controversy over wilderness
designation in Utah.