Good Observers of Nature: American Women and the Scientific Study of the Natural World, 1820-1885
Tina Gianquitto, assistant professor in the Division of Liberal Arts and International Studies, has recently published Good Observers of Nature (University of Georgia Press, June 2007), a book examining Nineteenth-Century American women’s intellectual and aesthetic experiences of nature and the linguistic, perceptual and scientific systems employed to describe those encounters. By discussing a range of women’s nature writings from the 1820s to the 1880s, the book makes observations about the interaction of reason and emotion in the study of nature; the best vocabularies for representing objects in nature; and some competing systems for observing, studying, and ordering the natural world.
“What Goes Down Must Come Up”
Carol Dahl, professor of economics, recently published an article for API that discusses the tripling of U.S. gasoline prices between Jan. 1999 and July 2006. Consumers, policymakers and the media have questioned why prices rose so quickly and why they remain so high. In this paper, Dahl evaluates the forces thought to be influencing price trends. One of her key observations is that recent price patterns are not unprecedented and are mirrored in the price behavior of other commodities. She argues there is no evidence refiners have been able
to block the behavior of a competitive market, pointing out that higher profits have been accompanied by normal inventory and investment practices. Instead, she argues that escalating prices can be attributed to the increased cost of crude oil, higher operating costs, proliferating grades of gasoline, unexpected growth in demand, lower demand responsiveness, recovery from low and negative rates of return on investment in the 1990s, hurricanes and regulatory uncertainty.