Category Archives: History

WWII and Energy Efficiency of an Office

Enigma-Machine1Occasionally, my long time interest in History and my job intersect.  Here is a news story that does. The headline “Top Secret Documents found in roof at Bletchley Park”, so I naturally read the article.  Bletchley Park during WWII was a great part of the secret  war effort by Great Britain against Germany.  It was run by His Majesty’s Government Code and Cypher School, to read coded German messages. It is named for the landed estate it was located on and has been turned into a museum. Location.  This is about 60 miles or 100 km NE of London center near the M1.

hut 3The connection to Energy Efficiency is these documents were found stuffing into openings in the roof of ‘Hut 3’  The huts were quickly built barracks type structures built early in the war, and did not have many amenities, even for the time.  Things like insulation, central heating, or probably much in the way of wall board on the inside. So these buildings leaked.  I would guess these very smart, talented folks working in Hut 3, didn’t know much about energy efficiency.  They did know when they were uncomfortable and could feel the wind blowing through the cracks and crevices.

So they took what ever was handy and stuffed the cracks full to stop the wind.  Today we call that air sealing.  These are the guys that invented some of the first computing machines. The solution was, like many of the wartime efforts, not the most elegant, but it worked.

If you would like some help locating the air leaks in your home, give me a call. I’ll use a Blower Door and a computer that is a descendant of those in Bletchley Park.

You can read the whole story here.

What Happens to a Bowl?

My Wood Turning Album on Facebook says

‘Sometimes something besides sawdust and wood shavings comes out of my shop.’  A number of those items are bowls.  Big ones, little ones, most are turned with a use in mind. One of the questions I am asked is:  “What happens to a bowl?’  Here is one answer.

11 inch ElmThis bowl started life as part of an Elm Tree.  It was planted many years ago, perhaps it was not planted, and just landed there.  As the tree grew, the power lines got in the way and the branches were trimmed.  The tree provided shade to those that paused under it.  Shade to the houses, and a perch for many birds.  In  the summer of 2012 the Elm was not in the best shape.  Somewhat lop sided due to the need to protect the power lines, it was still impressive.  The main trunk was about 36 inches at ground level.  The tree branched out in many ways.  The houses near by were within the shade and within the fall of branches as the wind blew. The homeowners felt very thankful for the shade and their time with the tree. The time had come.

The arborist came out and found why so many branches were dropping with minor winds.   The tree was dying, from the inside out.  So it was cut back and finally cut down.  This is quite a process to watch, as guys climb up the tree with safety ropes and chain saws.  The smaller branches drop around the tree, then the larger high branches.  The rain of branches dropping stops from time to time.  The branches are cleared away and those worth recycling are cut up and stacked. Then the process repeats itself. Eventually, the tree was down and the large trunk was cut into manageable pieces.Elm

I was luck enough to pick up some of this wonderful tree.  I have turned a few items.  The half log this bowl came out of was placed on the lathe last summer. The tree was still alive when it was cut down. So I partially turned this one to help it dry out. Then it put it aside to see how it dried out.  This one did rather well.  No cracks or splits and not much warping.  Last winter, it went back on the lathe to turn down to the finished size.

I removed more waste and cleaned up the shape. Along the way, I found some evidence of worms and other pieces of the decay process the arborist saw that was killing the tree from the inside out.  Over Labor Day weekend the turning and sanding was completed. The bottom was labeled and an oil finish was applied.

Since this bowl is designed as a Popcorn Bowl, 11 inches across and 5 inches tall, an oil finish is perfect. The oil from popcorn will continue to renew the finish for years to come.  Some time last winter I posted an in progress picture of this bowl on the lathe to Twitter. I had a question regarding the price of a bowl like that.  I thought about it and responded that this bowl would be donated to a local charity for their silent auction fundraiser. Then I got an idea for increasing the value and thus boost the auction results.

The idea of boosting the Silent Auction results, causes a trip to our local Dillon’s Store. A few items from the shelf and some clear gift wrap from the knowledgeable staff at the Floral Center.  Here they are putting the finishing touches on the wrapping.


This Popcorn Bowl is ready.  It is a heavy bowl, suitable for passing around the room during movie night or for a football game. The beads near the rim will help those buttery fingers hold on.  Any type of snack with some butter, oil or other similar snack will renew the finish.  Just wipe out with a dry cloth, ( or damp, if you wish.)

This little part of the big Elm tree, is now ready for a new chapter. The tree that took so many years to grow up, all the while sheltering the people and birds and other animals that paused for a few minutes or a few years, will continue to provide comfort and shelter to another family.

I took this Bowl to Wichita Habitat for Humanity this afternoon. It will be part of the Silent Auction at their annual Raise the Roof event this Saturday evening. Here are a couple of the wonderful staff at Wichita Habitat accepting the donation.

ErinIf you would like to attend their Raise The Roof Event, it is scheduled this coming Saturday evening, September, 13 at 5:00    You can read more about it, and buy your tickets at this link.



More Information and Registration for Raise the Roof.

A Tour of the Agco Plant in Hesston

Yesterday, I whet on a tour with the Wichita Chapter of APICS of the Agco Plant in Hesston, KS.  Located an hour north of Wichita, they manufacture farm machinery that is sold all over the world.  The plant originally made powered hay equipment. Here is one of their museum pieces SN 7  made in 1955 a wind rower, which cut and raked the hay for the baler. This combined two operations into one.Hesston Windrower

This one has been fully restored and they enter it in local parades.

APICS provides education and certification in resource allocation for industry. They work in Production and Inventory Management. It is always great to see professionals sharing and learning from one another.

The AGCO Tour was a great tour.  They had 3 guides and each group was about 10. They used a wireless system with each of us wearing a receiver to listen over the noise. I really appreciated that. Our tour guide had worked for AGCO for 47 years before retiring.  He now volunteers to return to conduct these tours. They give the tours regularly. They are expecting a group from Europe next week. Most of their tours are related to sales and service of their equipment.  When you have a plant with this level of expertise, it pays to give tours and put your best foot forward.

The plant has 8 buildings, covering 17 acres under roof.  The have 1,650 employees, including office, technical, engineering and production staff. Some areas work 3 shifts.  They manufacture Gleaner and Massey Ferguson Combines, large square and round balers, and other hay processing equipment.

Fordon Tractor with Windrower attached ca 1925Our guide emphasized that if it was made from metal, it was made here, on site. If it was made from rubber or plastic, it came elsewhere. The metal exceptions were fasteners such as nuts, bolts and screws and the engines for the machinery. The engines are made in an AGCO plant located in Finland.  Remember, their distribution is world wide, so this company makes machinery that goes all over.

The CNC and laser cutting processes, the robotic welders and the paint areas were all shown. The assembly areas and sub-assembly areas were shown as well.  It was fascinating to hear the obvious pride of our guide telling about what was made here and there, in this cell or that area.

I was pleasantly surprised to be shown as much of the plant as we were. It was all open and clean, accessible, and actually pleasant to walk through.  I have toured other plants over the years, small machine shops to large plants.  My last tour was a number of years ago.  The difference 20+ years, and the effect of professional management and leadership makes, is very striking.

Histoical PhotosAbove is a display of some historical photos of manufacturing Massey Ferguson implements 80-90 years ago.

Our guide emphasized the ISO 9000 quality control certification the plant had attained. This process, from the limited information provided, seems to be quite the thing.  We observed the areas reserved for parts that did not meet the engineering specifications.  There always seemed to be one or two part there, but never many. It demonstrated that those production staff, take their jobs seriously and are not shy about meeting their production and quality goals.  I would have wondered if I had not seen some parts being set aside.  No process works perfectly on every piece. Part of my job, as a HERS Rater, involves some quality control. It is nice to see people working, checking their work and sending some back to meet a specification.

The last stop on the tour was their education building. They conduct training on all aspects of maintenance and repair of the equipment manufactured at this plant and other AGCO plants. One of the things they do at this building, is to tear down machines that fail in use. Another part of their Quality Control.

Presentation APICS to ACCO

I understand their not wanting pictures taken within the plant. So, I was limited to taking a few of the group at the end.  The picture above is the APICS group presenting a plaque to 2 of our 3 guides in Thanks for the Tour.  Below is the group turning in their head sets and safety glasses.


Flags: The First of the Flowers to Come Inside!

Flowers are nice. They indicate that spring is here, winter is over and we can spend more time outside.  The birds chirp, the bees buzz around and the colors are wonderful.  I have memories as a child of flower gardens and ponds in them.  I don’t remember much detail, except they were always fun.

We moved to the Southern Nevada Desert early on.  I lived there until I left for college.  I went back east from Nevada to Kansas.  My flower journey has me getting married and joining into my wife’s Kansas family traditions.  The flower tradition is rooted in Decoration Day.

  Known to most as Memorial Day, I learned Decoration Day.  My wife’s folks were quiet farm types.  They had many opinions, and occasionally would even state them.  Most of the time they listened.  They remembered that God gave us two ears and one mouth.  I  have to continually remind myself of that. They taught me all about Decoration Day, by doing, not by talking.

It was a day to visit the various cemeteries and the graves of family members. You made sure the grave stone and appearance was acceptable.  You didn’t wait until the actual Memorial Day. I started this when Memorial Day was May 30; not always on a Monday. That came later. You started the weekend before Memorial Day.  The goal was to make sure when the ceremony started on the Memorial Day, or those from out of town came to visit the cemetery, you graves looked good.

In the yard around the house, my Mother-in-Law, Eda (Roberts) Greenfield, had lots of flowers.  She had a green thumb, and could keep her African Violets blooming year round. In the first years as I learned about Decoration Day, she would have a number of jars ready. Jelly, mayo, etc. Ready meant cleaned out and covered with aluminum foil.  Final preparation was to cut flowers from the farm yard and put them in the containers in water.

Then off we went.  They would go to two different cemeteries. There was the Princeton, KS Cemetery. This is where the Roberts side of the family was buried.  Her folks, and grandparents, and others.  Then we went the other way, to the Williamsburg, KS cemetery. There were the Greenfield family members. Parents and others, including their baby son.

In time, we added more cemeteries. Last year, my wife and I visited 7 cemeteries. Three of those have been added to our list from my start, because life goes on and ends. So people I knew were buried, it was not just about people that I had heard stories about.

One of the cemeteries we added, was my father-in-law’s mother. Glenn was born in 1907, his mother, Myrtle Irene Lightle, died in childbirth in 1917.  She is buried in Hall’s Summit, KS Cemetery.  If you find the intersection of I-35 and US 75, (BETO Junction) south of Topeka, you are close. It is actually 5 ½ south on US 75, then 3 East and ½ south. You will see the ATT Long Lines tower before you get off 75.  My brother-in-law, Paul would not find it that way.  He is a Geologist by training and works for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.  He would tell you how far is is from the Wolf Creek Power Plant. (About the same as from BETO junction.)

This grave had a large plot of flowers growing behind the grave stone. Perhaps a circle 20 feet in diameter. The few that were blooming were a pale yellow. They were Iris.

Eda always liked these ‘Flags’ as she called the Iris.  This cemetery had a number of graves with Flags planted nearby.  Both entrances to the  cemetery were marked with plantings of Flags.  Through the next few years as we drove in and out different ways, we found the country roads were spotted with Flags growing in fence lines, hedgerows and farm yards.

We could see them on this weekend before Memorial Day because they were in bloom.  All the bright Yellow, Purple, and mixed colors were there.  Watching them over the years gave me an appreciation for them.

Each year at Halls Summit, we would remove a few from that large circle. As we did so, more would bloom the next year.  Some years just one or two Rhizomes, some years we might get 30. Last year the circle was closer to 10 feet in diameter.  Those Flags have populated a lot of places. We just didn’t throw them away. They went to churchs, yards, a school that I can think of.  One Boy Scout used them in his Eagle Project.  I’m sure some of those have been thinned and have moved on.

So when I think of flowers, I think of Flags. I think of Road Trips, cemeteries and family.

– – –

I am reposting this post from my old blog.  I picked the first batch of my flags to bring inside, after dinner.

Conference Report: Frost, Ice, and Snow: Cold Climate in Russian History

Too many times people put on blinders related to their field of study, or just get too busy, and fail to consider a much wider point of view. In the process of auditing homes and helping people use less energy to heat and cool their homes, it is easy to lose track of how the cold can be looked at from many other points of view. From my interest in History – a piece crossed my email with a report on this Conference.  I present this for those who might be interested in how cold effects many things we do.

I would like to thank Henry Sirotin of Hunter College, NY, NY for bringing this to my attention.


Conference Report: Frost, Ice, and Snow: Cold Climate in Russian History
16–18 February 2012, Moscow, Russia

Sponsors: German Historical Institute (DHI Moscow), Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society, LMU Munich (RCC)

Conveners: Julia Herzberg (RCC Munich), Ingrid Schierle (DHI Moscow),
Andreas Renner (University of Tübingen), Klaus Gestwa (University of Tübingen)

In January 2012 inhabitants of the Northern Hemisphere experienced firsthand how much cold can influence our daily life. The fact that tabloid newspapers in Western Europe referred to it as “Russian cold” demonstrates the strength of the popular association of Russia with cold. It is therefore all the more fitting that the conference “Frost, Ice, and Snow: Cold Climate in Russian History” followed in the footsteps of this cold spell, bringing these topics into connection with each other. At the conference, which was organized by the German Historical Institute in Moscow and the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society and took place between 16 and 18 February 2012, scholars of environmental history, philosophy, and geography, as well as religious, film, and literary studies discussed the influence of cold climate on the Russian culture and history.

After the greeting by Nikolaus Katzer, the director of the German Historical Institute in Moscow, Julia Herzberg (Munich) introduced the goals of the conference, with the primary aim being to shed light on the relationship between environment and the study of history. She mentioned the discrepancy between the significance of climate for particular historical events in Russian history and the ignorance of historians up to now concerning these factors. Herzberg emphasized that the conference not only aimed to look at the gaps in research but also offered an opportunity to discuss the reasons why environmental history and climatic factors have played a minor role in previous historical scholarship. Furthermore the conference hoped to bring about a shift in focus within the environmental history of Russia and Eastern Europe. A large proportion of environmental history studies of the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union consider nature and the environment one-sidedly as a target of human activity.

The conference offered a chance to understand the relationship between nature and society as truly interdependent. It also presented new directions in research by looking at the history of science, as well as placing everyday practices and issues of risk and vulnerability at the center of the discussion and offered an opportunity to discuss how individual and collective identities are created through discussions about cold and
what significance these representations have for the understanding of oneself and others.

The first session was dedicated to ways of dealing with cold in everyday life and during the war. SVETLANA A. RAFIKOVA (Krasnojarsk) focused on adaptive practices, showing how city dwellers in the Krasnojarsk region in the 1960s managed the cold weather, developing a specifically Siberian culture.

KATARZYNA CHIMIAK (Warsaw) presented her dissertation project, in which she compares Dnepropetrosvsk, Essen and Manchester during the hard winter of 1946/47. A central question was whether and to what degree different social and economic structures led to different strategies for adaptation. The second half of the session was concerned with cold climate during the war.

ANTHONY J. HEYWOOD (Aberdeen) lectured on its effects on railroads from the First World War through the February Revolution of 1917. Heywood argued against the thesis that the difficulties with transportation and distribution of supplies resulting from the snow and extreme cold were a primary cause for the February Revolution.

ALEKSANDER L. KUZ’MINYKH (Vologda) examined the influence of the Russian winter on German soldiers first on the front and later in prisoner of war camps in and after the Second World War. He discussed why Russian and Soviet historians of World War II have ignored the importance of climate for so long.

The second session, “Coping with Cold” looked at the function of cold  and snow both as a threat and as a focal point for building a common identity, as well as serving a recreational function. Using a catastrophic avalanche in the Khibiny Region on the Kola Peninsula in 1935, ANDY BRUNO (Urbana-Champaign) showed how socially produced vulnerabilities are
expressed environmentally. Peasants forced to migrate during the settlement and industrialization of the north were most exposed to the dangers of avalanches. The tragic event was a catalyst for renewed efforts to scientifically predict the likelihood of avalanches.

The presentation of MARC ELIE (Paris) also focused on a catastrophic avalanche, looking at the disaster in 1966 in Alma-Ata. Avalanches, he argued, present the greatest threat to city growth and sport tourism. Elie showed how a local disaster in central Asia led to avalanches becoming a focus of scientific, technological, and government efforts.

The phenomenon of cold also influenced the formation of masculine identity and cultural heroes, as ALEKSANDR ANAN’EV (Moscow) showed using examples of polar explorers and hockey players.

ALEKSEI D. POPOV (Simferopol’) offered a new perspective on the history of tourism with his presentation on Soviet winter tourism as a seasonal phenomenon. He described how the significance of winter tourism changed over the decades from the 1920s to the 1990s. It ceased to function as ideological and physical training in preparation for wartime duties.

“Changing Climates” was the topic of the third session, which began the second day of the conference. JULIA LAJUS (St. Petersburg) presented her work with SVERKER SÖRLIN (Stockholm). Lajus discussed the significance of sea ice studies for Soviet arctic science and looked at its connections to ice and snow research in Sweden. She used the biographies and research results of Soviet and Swedish scientists to show how much contact and cooperation there was across the Iron Curtain.

PAUL JOSEPHSON (Waterville) looked at the industrialization of the Russian north as ordered by Moscow and inquired into the environmental damage and social costs which the transformation of the region brought with it. He demonstrated that the Bolsheviks ignored both the climatic and geological conditions as well as the knowledge of the local population, which resulted in a sharp increase in the environmental costs.

JONATHAN OLDFIELD (Glasgow) presented a counterpoint to this in his paper, arguing that the understanding of the
reciprocal relationship between society and nature improved after the Second World War. He showed that Soviet geographers of the 1950s not only recognized the importance of climate as a historical and dynamic process, but also pointed out the dangers of climate change.

Like Oldfield, DENIS J. B. SHAW (Birmingham) concerned himself with one of the most important Soviet geographers, A. A. Grigor’ev and his text “Subarktika,” focusing on Grigor’ev’s studies of the tundra. The discussion following both contributions showed once again how much research and politics were intertwined during the Cold War.

The papers in the following session, “Civilizing Coldness,” focused on the period around the end of the nineteenth and beginning of the twentieth century. Thus EKATERINA A. DEGAL’TSEVA (Biisk) talked about the mythically colored image of the “Sibiryak” that developed in Russia in the
nineteenth century, showing how climatic conditions influenced the (self)perception of Siberian residents.

NATALIA RODOGINA (Novosibirsk) focused on the significance of climate on the representations of Siberia in the Russian media in the second half of the nineteenth century. Of central importance was the question of whether the narrative of Siberia as a land of cold helped to integrate the region into the empire or whether it hindered this process.

Imperial attitudes towards the periphery were also the subject of the presentation by IAN W. CAMPBELL (California-Davis/Harvard) on shut in Kazakhstan. Zhut is a weather phenomenon occurring every ten to twelve years, characterized by the freezing of fodder grasses and resulting starvation of livestock, and was used by the scientists and bureaucrats in the waning empire to devalue the nomadic lifestyle and promote their ideas about the “modernization” of the steppes. DAVID SAUNDERS (Newcastle) looked at the economic and technological development of the Russian
arctic. Saunders made clear that the personal aptitudes of the people involved played a decisive role.

From the perspective of a geographer ERKI TAMMIKSAAR (Tartu) reconstructed the discovery of the Antarctic in the
1820s, another controversial topic during the Cold War due to the difficulty of clearly delineating a mass of ice. Therefore he argued that one should acknowledge multiple discoverers in different time periods, and base our evaluation on the knowledge available in their time. The competition to develop the Antarctic, as well as the initial discovery of it, demonstrates how scientific accomplishments were used for propaganda during the Cold War.

The last session of the second day examined cold as an aesthetic phenomenon and an imagined feeling. OKSANA BULGAKOWA (Mainz) began with a media and film studies approach to the topic. Using key examples from Russian/ Soviet film history, she looked at the ways cold was narrated and portrayed. Bulgakowa showed that the films contributed to making snow an important component of national identity.

While Bulgakowa was concerned with the Russians’ image of themselves, ROMAN MAUER (Mainz) was interested in the portrayal of Russian cold in German films of the post-war period. Here cold functioned as a symbol of trauma, allowing Germans to portray themselves as victims of the Soviet regime and to suppress questions of guilt and responsibility.

The third day continued the examination of artistic portrayals of cold, now turning to the medium of literature. SUSANNE FRANK (Berlin) discussed permafrost as a metaphor for memory in gulag literature. Starting with “ice” as a figure for the “other” in eighteenth-century literature, she suggested that in gulag literature ice gained a new function in addition to the classical one: it allowed projections of the future and of the possibility of living on (after death). The subsequent discussion emphasized that, particularly in hagiographic writing, the usual negative connotations of cold may be supplemented with positive ones.

Similar comments were made regarding the presentation of religious scholar JOSEF SCHOVANEC (Alfortville) on freezing as a spiritual experience. Schovanec showed that authors of autobiographical gulag literature often portray snow, ice, and cold as active forces. This presentation thus offered an opportunity to discuss the analytival value of the approach to think of nature as an actor.

The next session, “Representations Between Science and Politics” was introduced by PEY-YI CHU (Princeton). She described how a scientific discipline developed in the Soviet Union in the 1930s which made permafrost soil the object of scientific investigation and argued that this was also a strategy to present the permafrost zones as regions of economic significance. She discussed how different conceptions of the
permafrost led to it being manifested in various visualizations.

CAROLIN F. ROEDER (Harvard) dedicated her presentation to the Yeti as a “transnational monster.” She showed how even during the Cold War discourses about the Yeti overcame national boundaries and how it became a locus for discussion about “science” and “pseudoscience.”

In his concluding remarks KLAUS GESTWA (Tübingen) reflected upon the results of the conference, identified a number of central themes and suggested possibilities for further research. In many presentations, he noted, the human, societal and economic costs of the harsh climate were
particularly evident. At the same time, events such as Napoleon’s invasion of Russian in 1812 or the Second World War also had a protective function.

The conference showed, Gestwa concluded, how closely the history of cold is linked with science and technology. Above all the history of science during the Cold War, which was the subject of multiple presentations, showed that during the Cold War the investigation of cold, of all things, offered opportunities for scientific collaboration which transcended ideological differences. Gestwa expressed regret that the majority of presentations approached the cold regions from the point of view of outsiders, while the perspective of the indigenous population was only rarely considered. He proposed using the dichotomy “challenge” and “threat” as analytical categories and giving further consideration to the problem of whether nature can be described as an agent or actor.

In the final discussion conference participants suggested other topics for further investigation, for example, to look more closely at ways of dealing with cold in everyday life, at the connection between climate and perceptions of space, as well as linguistic aspects of the subject. Many contributions to the conference made clear that cold can develop its own dynamic, demonstrating that nature is more than just an object of human activity.

Frost, Ice, and Snow: Cold Climate in Russian History 16–18 February 2012, Moscow, Russia Welcome and Introduction
Nikolaus Katzer (DHI Moscow), Julia Herzberg (RCC Munich)

Session1: Mundane and Exceptional Times Chair: Andreas Renner (Tübingen)

Svetlana A. Rafikova (Krasnoiarsk): Siberian Frosts and the Everyday Adaptation Practices of City Dwellers

Katarzyna Chimiak (Warsaw): Challenging Crisis: Human Strategies of Adaptation and Survival during the Winter of 1946/1947 in Dnepropetrovsk, Essen, and Manchester

Anthony J. Heywood (Aberdeen): Transport for War in a Cold Climate: Russia’s Railways, July 1914 – March 1917

Aleksandr L. Kuz’minykh (Vologda): The Wehrmacht and the Russian Winter: the Influence of Climate on German Servicemen on the Front and in Soviet Captivity (1941-1956)

Session 2: Coping with Cold Chair: Erki Tammiksaar (Tartu)

Andy Bruno (Urbana-Champaign): Tumbling Snow: Avalanches in the Soviet North Marc Elie (Paris): Winter Sports, Ice Sciences, and Avalanches in Soviet Central Asia, 1950s-1980s

Aleksandr V. Anan’ev (Moscow): Heroes of the Ice: Two Masculine Identity Scripts of the Soviet Era—Hockey Player and Polar Explorer—and their Actualization at the Start of the Twenty-First Century

Aleksei D. Popov (Simferopol’): Winter Tourism in the Soviet Union: School of Courage, Competitive Brand, National Pastime

Session 3: Changing Climates Chair: Carolin F. Roeder (Harvard)
Julia Lajus (St. Petersburg): Cryo-Connections, Political Friendship and the Prospects of an Ice–Free Arctic, 1928–1955

Paul Josephson (Waterville): Soviet Efforts to Transform Nature in the Russian Northwest (Arkhangelsk and Murmansk provinces, Karelian Republic)

Jonathan Oldfield (Glasgow): Conceptualisations of Climate Change amongst Soviet Geographers from ca. 1945 to the early 1970s

Denis J. B. Shaw (Birmingham): The Subarctic: A Classic Study of the Tundra

Session 4: Civilizing Coldness Chair: Marc Elie (Paris)

Ekaterina A. Degal’tseva (Biisk): Sibirsk as a Concentrated Concept of Russian Cold (a Case Study of the Nineteenth Century)

Nataliia N. Rodigina (Novosibirsk): From the Country of Cold and Darkness to the Promised Land: the Role of the Climate in the Construction of Siberia’s Image in the Russian Magazine Press of the Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries

Ian W. Campbell (Davis, CA): The Nomad Who Came in from the Cold: Zhut and Civilizational Difference in the Late Nineteenth Century

David Saunders (Newcastle): Commerce and Technology in the Development of the Russian Arctic (1862-1921)

Erki Tammiksaar (Tartu): Russian South Pole Expedition in the Context of Political Interests of the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union

Session 5: Imagining Coldness Chair: Julia Herzberg (Munich)

Oksana Bulgakova (Mainz): Global Warming
Roman Mauer (Mainz): The Aesthetics of Cold and National Trauma in Film: Escape from a Siberian POW Camp

Session 6: Metaphors and Narratives Chair: Roman Mauer (Mainz)

Susanne Frank (Berlin): Permafrost as a Metaphor of Memory in Russian GULAG Literature (Pavel Florenskii, Varlam Shalamov) J. P. Schovanec (Alfortville): Frost as a Spiritual Experience: Written Accounts of Foreign Detainees in Stalinist Camps

Session 7: Representations Between Science and Politics
Chair: Paul Josephson (Waterville)

Pey-Yi Chu (Princeton): Mapping Permafrost Country: Visualizations of Frozen Earth in Russian History
Carolin F. Roeder (Harvard): A Creature of the Cold War: Soviet Science and the Snowman

Concluding Session Klaus Gestwa (Tübingen): Concluding Remarks

Saskia Geisler, Ruhr-Universität Bochum