Tuesdays, 11:50–1:15, Mar. 27–Apr. 3
Instructor: John Gaudet
Coordinator: John Joseph
Ten thousand years ago, the Sahara and Egypt were extraordinarily verdant, lush places with water in excess. Large lakes, interlinked with waterways and thousands of rivers, produced aquatic conditions. The swamps along the Nile River and in the delta were important wet refuges that served man and made up a “water world” in Egypt. The early inhabitants of this region developed rich agricultural land along the river floodplain in tune with the cycle of annual inundations until 5000-3000 BC. Then the climate changed as the earth tilted, rains stopped, deserts formed, and man moved on as the Sahara dried out. This course will discuss and illustrate this water world and how it acted as a great natural buffer, a sustainable reserve that was later cleared and developed to make way for the irrigated world of Pharonic times.
John Gaudet is a writer, lecturer, and ecologist whose writing has appeared in The Washington Post, Salon, and Huffington Post. He authored The Iron Snake, a historical novel about a railroad that affected millions in Africa. His most recent book, Papyrus: The Plant that Changed the World, is available on amazon.com.