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Arts & Science Program

First-year Arts & Science Capstone Project: Sophia Moosa

Sophia Moosa

Sophia Moosa

Winter 2024 Capstone Project Title: Industrialization and Wilderness Protection: An Unlikely Partnership

Project Description: In this essay, I explored the relationship between industrial capitalism and the wilderness park. Though the protection of wilderness seems like the opposite of industrialization, I argue that in fact wilderness parks do not challenge the system of industrial capitalism or meaningfully address its environmental harms. To demonstrate this, I show how the concept of the wilderness park devalues sustainable subsistence-based economies such as in Indigenous communities, provides a way to escape responsibility for the problems caused by industrialization, and supports large companies such as in the outdoors-wear industry.

The 1C06 Capstone experience: I love wilderness camping. But I’ve started to wonder why I need to go into the backcountry in order to feel connected to the beauty of the natural world. This made me think more deeply and critically about the role of wilderness in an industrialized society. I found I was more engaged and motivated working on this project because it concerns my personal convictions about something I care a lot about.

Key Takeaways: Before doing this project, I was already beginning to question the separation between nature and human activity that the idea of wilderness promotes. Working on this Capstone has really helped me clarify my ideas on what I believe the human relationship with nature should be. We need to build a society that uses nature without exploiting it and where everyone can live, work, and play surrounded by natural beauty.

Sophia Moosa Capstone Poster

Click here to read interviews with the other first year Arts & Science students.