Environmental Humanities

Environmental Humanities

Tom Davis, Philosophy
Rebecca Hanrahan, Philosophy, Chair, Division II
Kathleen Shea, Environmental Humanities/Classics (on Sabbatical, Fall 2013)
Donald Snow, Environmental Humanities

Inquiry in environmental humanities is guided by two questions: What is the relation between nature and culture? What should this relation be? These questions have become ever more important in the face of growing environmental problems. The environmental humanities major is governed by a subcommittee of the Environmental Studies Committee. The environmental humanities major uses the traditions of nature writing, environmental philosophy, and the classics to give direction and focus to inquiry into the values and concepts that may govern our relation to nature. In order to insure an intellectually cohesive program, the student’s faculty adviser will review and approve each major’s plan for coursework leading to a senior thesis.

In addition to the courses required of all environmental studies majors, the following are required for the environmental humanities major:

Foundation coursework: Take two foundation courses from the following list (courses satisfying this requirement cannot also satisfy the elective requirement): Classics 217/Environmental Studies 217 Classical Foundations of the Nature Writing; Classics 350/Environmental Studies 350 Landscape and Cityscape in Ancient Rome; English 348 The American Literary Emergence, 1620-1920; Environmental Studies 247 The Literature of Nature; Environmental Studies 349 Regional Literatures of Place: The West and the South; Environmental Studies 358 Ecocriticism; Geology 338 Pages of Stone: The Literature of Geology; Philosophy 207 Foundations of American Romanticism; Philosophy 209 Contemporary American Romanticism; Philosophy 300 Emerson.

Writing requirement: To fulfill the writing requirement take either Environmental Studies 347 The Nature Essay; or Environmental Studies 360 Environmental Writing in the American West*.

Critical thinking requirement: To fulfill the critical thinking requirement take one course from: Classics 226/Environmental Studies 226 Concepts of Nature in Greek and Roman Thought; Philosophy 107 Critical Reasoning; Philosophy 117 Problems in Philosophy; Philosophy 120 Environmental Ethics; Philosophy 127 Ethics; Philosophy 208 Ethics and Food: What’s for Dinner?; Philosophy 212 Environmental Thinking; Philosophy 230 History and Philosophy of Science; Philosophy 345 Animals and Philosophy.

Electives: Take three elective courses, two of which must be 300 or above, from: Art History/Philosophy 241 Environmental Aesthetics; Art History 248 Ways of Seeing: Japanese Art and Aesthetics; Classics 217/Environmental Studies 217 Classical Foundations of the Nature Writing; Classics 226/Environmental Studies 226 Concepts of Nature in Greek and Roman Thought; Classics 350/Environmental Studies 350 Landscape and Cityscape in Ancient Rome; English 348 The American Literary Emergence, 1620-1920; Environmental Studies 247 The Literature of Nature; Environmental Studies 340 Environmental Radicals in Literature; Environmental Studies 349 Regional Literatures of Place: The West and the South; Environmental Studies 358 Ecocriticism; Environmental Studies 360 Environmental Writing and the American West*; Philosophy 120 Environmental Ethics; Philosophy 207 Foundations of American Romanticism; Philosophy 209 Contemporary American Romanticism; Philosophy 212 Environmental Thinking; Philosophy 300 Emerson; Philosophy 345 Animals and Philosophy; World Literature 328 Haiku and Nature in Japan.

Senior Assessment: Take Environmental Studies 488 Senior Project or Environmental Studies 498 Honors Project. The senior assessment will also include an hour-long oral examination of the senior thesis.

*Offered only to students admitted to Semester in the West