Frank Uekötter, Birmingham University, "The Rise and Decline of Florida Citrus and the Global History of Monoculture" (HSTEM talks)

Frank Uekötter, Department of History and Professor of Environmental Humanities, Birmingham University.


Florida’s citrus industry is on a downward slope. A bacterial disease, citrus greening, and land-hungry developers have reduced the size of orange groves across the state. It is the latest chapter in a global history of monoculture that is defined by perennial crises. Rather than perpetuating the familiar lament about the evils of monoculture, this presentation suggests that it is time to inquire why the drive towards ever greater specialization remains one of the defining features of twenty-first century agriculture. Using Florida citrus as a case study, the presentation seeks to identify tools and modes of crisis management, the scientific resources in play, and the mindsets of stakeholders. Monocultures will be a pillar of the global food system for the foreseeable future, and we better understand why they are so resilient.


This talk is part of the History of Science, Technology, Environment, and Medicine series (formerly HPS talks) and is generously co-sponsored by the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies (CREES). 


Wednesday, March 29, 2023 at 12:00pm to 1:30pm

Garrison Hall (GAR), 1.102
128 INNER CAMPUS DR , Austin, Texas 78705

Event Type

Academics, Arts & Humanities, Science & Tech, Campus & Community, Sustainability


College of Liberal Arts

Target Audience

Students, Staff, Faculty, General Public


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