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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Linda L Nash
HSTAA 570
Seattle Campus

American Environmental History

Readings in environmental history emphasizing theory, methodology, and principal themes in the field. Readings emphasize the environmental history of North America and the United States.

Class description

This aim of this graduate colloquium is to provide an introduction to the literature in environmental and public health history in colonial and post-colonial locations. The focus will be primarily on the British and American imperial experience, although material from other areas will also be included. We will explicitly consider how the analytic of empire has been used in environmental history and the role environments have played in the history of empires. We will also engage recent literature in science studies in order to consider technologies of environmental and disease management and their material and social effects. The course will emphasize recent literature, but we will also read a few classic texts. Among the texts we will read are the following: Crosby, Ecological Imperialism; Beinert and Hughes, Environment and Empire; Sheldon Watts, Epidemics and History; Warwick Anderson, Colonial Pathologies; Hodge, Triumph of the Expert; Steven Palmer, Launching Global Health, as well as shorter pieces by Mary Louis Pratt, Frederick Cooper, Timothy Mitchell, Nicholas Cooper, David Arnold, and several others.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

This course is intended primarily for graduate students in the humanities and social sciences.

Class assignments and grading

Regular attendance and engaged participation in weekly discussions; oral presentation; ~20-25 pages of written work.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Linda L Nash
Date: 08/10/2010