Professor Mazin Qumsiyeh, who teaches and conducts research at Bethlehem and Birzeit Universities in Palestine, will give a talk titled “The Importance of Human and Biological Diversity: Threats and Opportunities in Palestine as Case Study,” at Reversing Falls Sanctuary in Brooksville on June 20 at 7 p.m.
Qumsiyeh is a Palestinian Christian, a biologist, and a human rights activist. The Downeast BDS Coalition, Maine Voices for Palestinian Rights, Episcopal Peace Fellowship of Maine, and Americans Who Tell the Truth are co-sponsoring his visit to Maine.
Mazin Qumsiyeh explains that movements towards uniformity such as Zionism have threatened the crucial diversity found in the landscape, both social diversity and biodiversity. He argues that restoring our social and natural ecosystems requires challenging ideas of dominance and hegemony. Qumsiyeh will frame his talk with three points of focus: the plants and animals of the Holy Land and the status of nature conservation there; the role fulfilled by establishing museums and botanical gardens in developing areas; and the perspective of a Palestinian environmental scientist.
Professor Qumsiyeh is the founder and director of the Palestine Museum of Natural History, and Institute for Biodiversity and Sustainability (palestinenature.org). He previously served on the faculties of the University of Tennessee, Duke, and Yale universities and has published more than 150 scientific papers on topics ranging from biodiversity to cancer. He was chairman of the Palestinian Center for Rapprochement between People and currently serves on the board of Al-Rowwad Children’s Theater Center in Aida Refugee Camp.
His many books include Mammals of the Holy Land, Sharing the Land of Canaan: Human Rights and the Israeli/Palestinian Struggle (English, Spanish, and German) and Popular Resistance in Palestine: A History of Hope and Empowerment (Arabic, English, French, forthcoming in Italian). He also has an activism book published electronically on his website (qumsiyeh.org), has published over 250 letters to the editor and 100 Op-Ed pieces, and has been interviewed on TV and radio extensively (local, national and international).
Mazin Qumsiyeh’s visit is at the conclusion of an Eastern US tour.
For more information about his Brooksville talk, contact Carolyn Coe at 852-6696.