A History of Fisheries

Credit Value
3 credits

Not offered in 2023/24

DescriptiongreekfishingdudecherubsinboatRationale: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it” (Santayana, The Life of Reason, 1905).

This multi-disciplinary course examines the history of human fishing from ancient times in order to understand its impacts on natural ecosystems, biodiversity and human communities, drawing lessons for sustainability and future development. Focused on the development of fishing technology, the course is illustrated with many examples and case studies world-wide, and includes a historical review of BC fisheries. Some prior knowledge of fisheries and fishing gear (such as covered in FISH 520) will be useful and as part of the study of the origins of fishing technology, students may learn how to make a net (this will depend on help from Joe Bauer).

oldtimeyfishingdudeThe course will include lectures, discussion sessions, student seminars and a formal debate, and we may have some guest lectures from historians and environmentalists. Assessment will be based on multiple choice tests and mini-research projects through the course, while all will submit an essay based on the debate topic. There will be no formal examination.

Suggested Text Book: Callum Roberts (2008) The Unnatural History of the Sea. Island Press.

Course Instructor

Dr Tony Pitcher