American Studies Program

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                                                 2010 Conference: Social Conflict and Environmental Change

                                                 2011 Conference: Creating Healthy Landscapes

                                                 2012 Conference: Flora and Fauna in Environmental History



A Northeast Regional Conference 

Saturday, April 12, 2014

New Haven, Connecticut




OVERVIEW: Yale Environmental History hosted a one-day conference, "New Perspectives in Environmental History," on Saturday, April 12, 2014.  The conference showcased new graduate student research in environmental history and sought to encourage dialogue among students and faculty.


The conference included three moderated panel sessions featuring papers by students from nine different universities. The first session, "POWER AND RESOURCES," considered the use of forest resources during the American Revolutionary War; coal as a focus for Indian national development; and conflicts over wetlands flood control measures along the Euphrates. The second session, "WATER AND THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT," examined struggles to control rivers in Brazil, contain invasive species along the United States coastline, and manage sewage treatment in Los Angeles.  The third session, "SCIENCE AND KNOWLEDGE PRODUCTION," explored its theme in four settings: the field illustrations of the U.S. Exploring Expedition in the mid-nineteenth century; 1970s mushroom science as a tool for poverty alleviation and waste treatment; radiocarbon dating as a method for studying past climates and ecological communities; and, the links between sugar processing and the spread of dengue fever in South Africa.

A faculty panel, including KARL JACOBY (Columbia), JAMES MCCANN (Boston University), ALAN MIKHAIL (Yale), and HARRIET RITVO (MIT), concluded the day. The complete conference schedule is available here: "New Perspectives in Environmental History" Conference Schedule.


The conference format followed successful northeast regional conferences held at Yale in 2010, 2011, and 2012.  To learn about our previous conferences, please visit the conference webpages below.

We are grateful to our Co-Sponsors and Supporters:

Department of History, Yale University
MacMillan Center at Yale
Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies

Program in the History of Science and Medicine, Yale University

Please contact environmentalhistory at with any questions.

"I thought this was a wonderful conference and I am very grateful to the organizers.  I most enjoyed it as an opportunity to survey the range of topics and methods being studied/used by graduate students in environmental history right now, as well as for the chance to have informal conversations with colleagues from other institutions.  I thought the atmosphere was great and the number of attendees was encouraging.  I was really impressed by the balance between junior and senior members of the field in attendance and I enjoyed the dynamic it created."

                                                             2010 Conference Participant

"The best part of the conference - now that I have attended two years in a row - is getting to see old friends and meet new ones each time. Lunch is always a great time to socialize with colleagues that you never otherwise get to see throughout the year. Everyone is so friendly and casual and there is such a nice, supportive atmosphere here."

                                                             2011 Conference Participant


       Recent Environmental History Conferences at Yale

Two Kingdoms: New Perspectives on Flora and Fauna inEnvironmental History.”

A Northeast Regional Conference

Yale University, Saturday, April 14, 2012
New Haven, Connecticut






“RESOURCES: Endowment or Curse,

Better or Worse?"

Co-Sponsored by the Yale Program in Economic History & Yale Environmental History

Yale University, Friday and Saturday, February 24-25, 2012, New Haven, Connecticut







“Creating Healthy Landscapes: Human and Environmental Well-being in Comparative and Historical Perspective.”

A Northeast Regional Conference
Yale University, Saturday, March 26, 2011
New Haven, Connecticut





“Social Conflict and Environmental Change in Comparative and Historical Perspective.”

A Northeast Regional Conference
Yale University, Saturday, April 17, 2010
New Haven, Connecticut