The ENDOW initiative is Wyoming’s latest attempt to diversify its economy. For author Samuel Western shaping the state's future, requires an examination of how Wyoming imagines its past. Western will explore this idea and lead a discussion at the University of Wyoming on April 5.
Western is best known for his 2002 book, “Pushed Off the Mountain, Sold Down the River,” which explores the relationship between Wyoming’s myth and its economic history. Western said these ties create stories, or narratives that color the way Wyomingites see their way of life.
“They’re what people tell themselves, what they want to do, what our society should be. And we have a whole set of narratives in Wyoming, about interdependence, about self-sufficiency, about liberty,” said Western. “The question I’m asking is, ‘do those narratives need to be tweaked a bit? Are they relevant? How do they play a role in today’s society?’”
The event is April 5 at 7 p.m. at the Berry Biodiversity Conservation Center on UW’s campus and will feature two students from the College of Law as well as former Wyoming Supreme Court Justice Marilyn Kite. It’s hosted by the Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources.