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HIST 3144: American Environmental History

This course explores interactions between Americans and the environment from the time of European contact to the recent past. Students will explore the sometimes-unexpected ways in which nature has shaped history and humans have altered the natural world. Students will also trace how environmental attitudes have evolved over history, and how environmental inequalities have arisen.

Why take it?

This course will allow students to integrate the knowledge and skills they have learned in other courses, while also acquiring critical historical perspective on the many profound environmental challenges we face as a nation and a world. Engaging with the policies, practices, and values that have created our modern world will allow students to appreciate the many environmental inequalities that surround us, and empower them to think about alterative pathways for the future. The skills cultivated in this course – critical analysis, writing, ethical reasoning, and intercultural competence – will serve students throughout their lives.

HIST 3144 fulfills an elective in the following Pathways minors:


There are no prerequisites for this course.

This course fulfills Pathways requirements in Critical Thinking in the Humanities, Reasoning in the Social Sciences, and Ethical Reasoning.