Environmental History

Environmental history is the study of human beings interacting with the natural world over time. It considers the role of non-human factors in history, simultaneously emphasizing that human beings both produce and are part of the natural environment. While drawing on the frameworks and methods of the diverse disciplines that aim to study the natural world, environmental historians also examine the sociocultural construction of notions such as “nature” and “environment.” For these reasons, environmental history is closely related not only to the study of ecology and climate in the sciences but also to disciplines such as social and cultural historypolitical and economic historygeographyphilosophy, and history of science and medicine. In addition to the omnivorous methodological approaches that comprise the environmental humanities in the United States, environmental history at the University of Virginia reflects the global tendencies of the field today, with researchers and instructors specializing in Latin Americathe Middle EastAfrica, and transnational questions. UVa courses in environmental history bring history majors together with students from other programs on campus related to the study of the environment, especially the Environmental Thought & Practice interdisciplinary program.


Associate Professor of German and History, Director, European Studies Program, Director, Center for German Studies
Nau 255
Office Hours: MW 11:00am-12:00pm, and by appointment
Themes: Cultural and Social History, Environmental History, Genocide & Violence, Intellectual History & History of Ideas, Jewish History, Political History, Race & Ethnicity, Transnational and Diplomatic History
Professor, Associate Chair, Co-Director, UVa Early American Seminar at Monticello, Co-Director, MapScholar/VisualEyes
431 Nau Hall
Office Hours: Mondays and Tuesdays, 1:00-2:30 pm, and by appointment
Themes: Digital Humanities, Economic History & History of Capitalism, Empire & Colonialism, Environmental History, History of Slavery, Spatial History, Frontiers, & Migration
Associate Professor
282 Nau
Office Hours: Fall 2019: Wednesdays 9-11am (282 Nau) and Fridays 1:30-3:30pm (108 Minor)
Themes: Cultural and Social History, Economic History & History of Capitalism, Environmental History, Legal History, Political History, Race & Ethnicity
La Fleur
Nau 238
Office Hours: scheduled with Collab's Sign-Up tool (most weeks Tuesdays, 15:30 – 17:15)
Themes: Environmental History, History of Slavery, Science, Medicine, & Technology
Photo by Chris Taylor / U.S. Department of the Treasury
Assistant Professor of History and American Studies
484 Nau Hall
Office Hours: T 2-4 & Th 3:30-4:30. Schedule at https://ds2ax.youcanbook.me
Themes: Economic History & History of Capitalism, Empire & Colonialism, Environmental History, Labor History, Science, Medicine, & Technology

Graduate Student

Abeer Saha
Doctoral Candidate, Editor-in-Chief, Essays in History, Jefferson Fellow, Jefferson Scholars Foundation
Themes: Economic History & History of Capitalism, Environmental History, Political History, Science, Medicine, & Technology