Learning Pathways - Environmental Humanities

Description

This pathway encourages students to engage with humanity’s lived experience with the natural world by taking courses in history, literature, and philosophy. The environmental humanities emphasize human perceptions, representations, and valuations of nature; our historical interactions with the environment; ethical attitudes toward the earth and its creatures; the study of environmental science and technology as human activities; and many other dimensions of nature-culture relations.

Faculty

Gregory T. Cushman, History — Lead Faculty Member, Environmental Humanities

Santa Arias, Spanish & Portuguese
Byron Caminero-Santangelo, English
Phil Drake, English
Sara Gregg, History
Megan Kaminski, English
Paul Outka, English
Edmund Russell, History

Resources

Suggested Courses

English

ENGL 306 Global Environmental Literature
An examination of a variety of literary and other representations of human and non-human environments and environmentalism. Particular attention will be paid to how race, gender, class, sexuality, and geography produce and are produced by those representations. Prerequisite: Prior completion of the KU Core Written Communication requirement. Recommended: Prior completion of one 200-level English course. LEC.
Fall 2017
Type Time/Place and Instructor Credit Hours Class #
LEC Weatherford, Jessica
APPT- ONLNE KULC - LAWRENCE
3 22168
LEC Weatherford, Jessica
APPT- ONLNE KUEC - EDWARDS
3 26276
LEC Weatherford, Jessica
APPT- ONLNE KULC - LAWRENCE
3 22169
LEC Weatherford, Jessica
APPT- ONLNE KUEC - EDWARDS
3 26277
ENGL 568 American Literary Environmentalism
An examination of representations of nature and human/nature relations and their political, social and environmental consequences, with a special focus on the 19th and 20th centuries, including the writings of transcendentalists and conservationists, slave narratives, scientific writing on toxicity and other topics, and environmental justice literature. Capstone course. Prerequisite: Prior completion of at least one 300- or 400-level English course. LEC.

The class is not offered for the Fall 2017 semester.

ENGL 660 Ecocriticism
A study of the relationship between various modes of representation and environmentalism. Particular attention paid to the intersection between ecocriticism and other forms of contemporary literary theory, including, for example, critical race studies, poststructuralism, postcolonial theory, gender and sexuality studies, class-based criticism, and animal theory. Capstone course. Prerequisite: Prior completion of at least one 300- or 400-level English course. LEC.

The class is not offered for the Fall 2017 semester.

ENGL 306. Global Environmental Literature. 3 Hours. H.

An examination of a variety of literary and other representations of human and non-human environments and environmentalism. Particular attention will be paid to how race, gender, class, sexuality, and geography produce and are produced by those representations. Prerequisite: Prior completion of the KU Core Written Communication requirement. Recommended: Prior completion of one 200-level English course. LEC.

ENGL 568. American Literary Environmentalism. 3 Hours. AE61 / H.

An examination of representations of nature and human/nature relations and their political, social and environmental consequences, with a special focus on the 19th and 20th centuries, including the writings of transcendentalists and conservationists, slave narratives, scientific writing on toxicity and other topics, and environmental justice literature. Capstone course. Prerequisite: Prior completion of at least one 300- or 400-level English course. LEC.

ENGL 660. Ecocriticism. 3 Hours. H.

A study of the relationship between various modes of representation and environmentalism. Particular attention paid to the intersection between ecocriticism and other forms of contemporary literary theory, including, for example, critical race studies, poststructuralism, postcolonial theory, gender and sexuality studies, class-based criticism, and animal theory. Capstone course. Prerequisite: Prior completion of at least one 300- or 400-level English course. LEC.

Environmental Studies
EVRN/HIST 336: Ethics, Ideas, and Nature

This course will examine the ethical frameworks developed for thinking about, using, and protecting the natural world. Examples of topics include indigenous approaches to nature, the history of ecological ideas, environmental movements, the role of the state in managing resources, utilitarianism and progressivism, environmental lawmaking, wilderness advocacy, nature and theology, the rights of nature, and environmental justice.

This course is designed to fulfill KU Core Goal 5, Outcome 1: Social Responsibility and Ethics.

History

HIST 103 Environment and History
Nature is our oldest home and newest challenge. This course surveys the environmental history of the earth from the extinction of the dinosaurs to the present with a focus on the changing ecological role of humans. It analyzes cases of ecological stability, compares cultural attitudes toward nature, and asks why this ancient relationship seems so troubled. (Same as EVRN 103.) LEC.

The class is not offered for the Fall 2017 semester.

HIST 336 Ethics, Ideas, and Nature
This course examines the ethical frameworks developed for thinking about, using, and protecting the natural world. Examples of topics include indigenous approaches to nature, the history of ecological ideas, environmental movements, the role of the state of managing resources, utilitarianism and progressivism, environmental lawmaking, wilderness advocacy, nature and theology, the rights of nature, and environmental justice. Students are introduced to the theories of duty ethics, justice ethics, utilitarianism, and right ethics, and required to apply ethical decision making to contemporary and historical environmental issues. Multiple perspectives on the history of human interactions with nature demonstrate the importance of reflecting upon the value systems inherent in human-centered environmental ethics and nature-centered environmental ethics. (Same as EVRN 336.) LEC.
Fall 2017
Type Time/Place and Instructor Credit Hours Class #
LEC Caminero-Santangelo, Byron
TR 01:00-02:15 PM LEA 2112 - LAWRENCE
3 22355
LEC
MW 11:00-12:15 PM WES 4008 - LAWRENCE
3 24790
LEC Boynton, Alex
MW 01:00-02:15 PM ROB 252 - LAWRENCE
3 26683
HIST 347 Environmental History of North America
A survey of changes in the landscape and in people's perceptions of the natural world from 1500 to present. Topics include agroecology, water and energy, the impact of capitalism, industrialism, urbanization, and such technologies as the automobile, and the origins of conservation. (Same as EVRN 347.) LEC.

The class is not offered for the Fall 2017 semester.

HIST 365 Invention of the Tropics
This course surveys the history of the tropical environment and its peoples from Europe's first encounter to today's ecotourism boom. It focuses on portrayals of the tropics in historical travel accounts and films. Through these sources, we seek to understand how science, technology, and tourism have been used, in turn, as instruments of progress and destruction, tools of empire and national liberation. Case studies are drawn from Latin America, Africa, Oceania, and Asia. LEC.

The class is not offered for the Fall 2017 semester.

HIST 562 United States Environmental History in the 20th Century
Americans dramatically changed the natural world between 1900 and 2000. This course asks how transformed environments shaped the American experience during a century of technological innovation, democratic renewal, economic expansion, global conflict, and cultural pluralism. Topics include food and markets, energy and transportation, law and politics, protest and resistance, suburbanization, and environmentalism's fate in a global information era. (Same as EVRN 562.) LEC.

The class is not offered for the Fall 2017 semester.

HIST 563 U.S
Explores both leading and dissident ideas that Americans have had about the natural world since 1900. Broad chronological periods are explored in some depth, including the Progressive Era, New Deal, Cold War, the Sixties, and the Reagan Eighties. The course uses articles and books, as well as visual and aural forms of communication. Commercial speech, as well as scholarly and literary works, are considered. (Same as EVRN 563.) Prerequisite: EVRN 148 or HIST 129, or permission of instructor. LEC.

The class is not offered for the Fall 2017 semester.

HIST 636 Agriculture in World History
A survey of the development of agriculture from prehistory through the present. The major themes of the course will be how various methods of farming have spread around the world, how new techniques have transformed agriculture, and how peasants and farmers have interacted with cities and governments. LEC.

The class is not offered for the Fall 2017 semester.

Philosophy

PHIL 380 Environmental Ethics
After a brief survey of techniques of moral argument and analysis, particular moral issues related to the environment will be discussed. These will include such topics (one of which may be dealt with in depth) as animal rights, rights of future generations, wilderness preservation, population control, endangered species, and economics and public policy. Prerequisite: EVRN 148 or consent of instructor. LEC.
Fall 2017
Type Time/Place and Instructor Credit Hours Class #
LEC
APPT- ONLNE KULC - LAWRENCE
3 24716
LEC
APPT- ONLNE KULC - LAWRENCE
3 24717


Environmental Studies Events
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