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Rewilding for the Urban Dweller

27July 2017

Science Café is an initiative of Science Department of Stellenbosch University, turning the gallery into an open classroom.

 

On July 27 Science Café poped-in to GUS to host a talk by Prof Erica Wohldmann from California State University in the USA. The talk was moderated by Prof Nox Makunga from Stellenbosch University.

 

What happens to our psychological well-being and cognition when we spend time in nature, or, conversely, when we are deprived of nature?

 

“In many ways, we modern humans are not well adapted for the environments that we have created. Biology cannot change as quickly as technology. The consequences of the rapid pace of cultural evolution can be seen in our physical and psychological health, and in how we care for the planet. In 2012, I took a sabbatical and set off to live in the wild in hopes of better understanding what it might feel like to live in greater alignment with my ancient body. I spent 6 months traveling through the Western U.S. and Canada living the life of a contemporary nomadic hunter and gatherer. I spent no money on food. In this talk, I will share some of the lessons that I learned while living in the forest, and how to apply those lessons to those of us who live in the urban wild. In addition, based on my research findings and those of other behavioral scientists, I will discuss some of the benefits that spending time in nature has on cognition and health” - Prof Erica Wohldmann