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NASA's "Blue Marble" Photograph Fifty Years On
Neil Maher, "Whole Earth Without Borders."
Neil Maher's essay "Whole Earth Without Borders: Earth Photographs, Space Data and the Importance of Visual Culture Within Environmental History" rethinks our understanding of the Blue Marble's association with the environmental movement. Maher questions the idea that those involved in the movement were quick the adopt the Blue Marble as an icon (not until the 1990s did the photograph become widespread in environmental protest imagery and literature). Rather, he suggests, the image gained symbolic power due to it encapsulating, for many, the idea of "global unity" and its connection to environmental issues developed more slowly thanks to the attention devoted to it by environmental scientists, NASA engineers and activists over the years. Read the article on Neil's website here: https://www.neilmaher.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/Whole-Earth-w_o-Borders.pdf
Neil Maher, Apollo in the Age of Aquarius
Neil's book Apollo in the Age of Aquarius offers an extensive history of NASA's relation to US politics and society during the late 1960s and 1970s. From tensions between the agency and civil rights movement, counterculture and feminist movement, to discussions of environmental activism and technology, the book offered us much to consider as we planned these events. You can read more about the book, and a number of Neil's other writings, on his website: https://www.neilmaher.com/
Neil Maher gave a talk - "Greening the Blue Marble: Space Data, Visual Culture and the Birth of an Environmental Icon" - on Thursday December 8, 2022. You can view the video here.
Jennifer Levasseur, Blogs for the National Air and Space Museum
Expedition 46 Commander Scott Kelly inside the Cupola of the International Space Station, July 12, 2015. See Jennifer Levasseur's Blog, "Seeing Earth Through Astronaut Eyes": https://airandspace.si.edu/stories/editorial/seeing-earth-through-astronaut-eyes
"We rely on our astronauts to serve as our visual surrogates," writes Jennifer Levasseur in her blog Seeing Earth Through Astronaut Eyes, "informing our vision of what Earth looks like on a daily basis." Levasseur discusses how astronaut photography of Earth supply essential information on "weather and natural disasters to urban growth" while also "humanising" the data collected and presented in satellite photographs taken from space. You can read a selection of Jennifer's blogs related to space photography by following this link: https://airandspace.si.edu/people/staff/jennifer-levasseur
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