February 20, 2007
Director of Media Relations

AMHERST, Mass.—Susanna Hecht, professor of urban planning at UCLA and fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton University, will speak on “Paradoxes of Globalization: Forest Loss and Forest Recovery in Latin Americaat 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 27, in Paino Lecture Hall (107 Earth Sciences) at Amherst College. Sponsored by the Amazon Studies Lectureship Fund and the Environmental Studies Program of Amherst College, Hecht’s talk is free and open to the public.

Agricultural ecology and rural development, regional development and policy, tropical agricultural development and resources, soil morphology and management and nutrient cycling are the subjects of Hecht’s research—much of it centered in the Amazon Basin. But Hecht is also interested in environmental history and philosophy, and has translated the writings of the lyrical Brazilian novelist Euclides da Cunha (1866-1909), who revealed much about the lost history of Amazonia in his classic Rebellion in the Backlands and was also a preeminent Amazonian explorer.

The co-author with Alexander Cockburn of Fate of the Forest: Developers, Destroyers, and Defenders of the Amazon (1989), Hecht also co-edited Agroecology and Small Farm Development (1990) and contributed to Development or Destruction: the Conversion of Tropical Forest to Pasture in Latin America (1992).

Hecht received a B.A. (1972) from the University of Chicago, and M.A. (1976) and Ph.D. (1982) degrees from the University of California at Berkeley. She has received grants and fellowships from the MacArthur Foundation, Pew Charitable Trusts, Jessie Smith Noyes and the National Science Foundation. She also has been a panel member, advisor and reviewer to foundations and U.S. and Amazonian non-governmental organizations and a consultant for the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank and the Dutch and British Overseas Development Councils.

The lecture is sponsored by the Amazon Studies Lectureship Fund and Environmental Studies at Amherst College.