Personally Speaking Looks at Two Sides of Wartime Recycling

In Waste into Weapons – Recycling in Britain During the Second World War, (Cambridge University Press), UNC Charlotte History professor Peter Thorsheim explores the role of waste and recycling in Britain under conditions of total war.

Although essential for national survival, Thorsheim shows how wartime salvage tended to alienate as much as unite the British public. Vigorous, but often ill-conceived salvage efforts led to infringements of civil liberties, destroyed historical artifacts, and damaged private property. Some materials were never recycled but were left to languish in enormous dumps long after the end of the war. The national salvage effort angered thousands and left many without compensation for their losses, souring a generation on recycling.

Be part of a community conversation about the historical pluses and minuses of recycling at Personally Speaking with Peter Thorsheim on Tuesday, March 21, 2017.

The presentation will begin at 6:30 p.m. at UNC Charlotte Center City, 320 E. 9th St. (Charlotte 28202). A reception and book-signing will follow immediately afterward.

Personally Speaking is open to the public without charge, but registration is requested. Complimentary parking is available at lots directly across 9th and across Brevard streets from UNC Charlotte Center City.

This is the last of the four-part Personally Speaking series, now in its seventh year and presented by UNC Charlotte’s College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and J. Murrey Atkins Library with support from UNC Charlotte Center City. The 2017-2018 series will be announced at this event.

Learn more about the entire series at

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