volume 28, issue 3
update on 2018 conference
If you submitted a proposal to present at our 2018
conference - thank
you! Our program committee has sent acceptance and
rejection notices - and we will email the schedule in a few weeks. If
you did not hear from the program committee about the status of your
proposal, contact email@example.com.
Our 2018 conference will include the
discussion on EH, the border, and environmental humanities
on water archives, organized by the Claremont Colleges
on oral history, organized by the Forest History Society
feature: lightning talks
receptions, where you can meet friends and colleagues
area with 50 display tables, where you can talk to editors and
view the latest scholarship in environmental history
trips on Friday afternoon and Sunday, including opportunities to
explore the Huntington Library in Pasadena
getting to riverside
For information on the
conference schedule, hotel reservations, and more, click
2018 conference will include a field trip exploring coastal
development in Southern California (pictured above) on March 16.
field trips will include a walking tour of downtown Riverside
(pictured above and below) on March 16.
2018 conference will explore the citrus industry and will include a
citrus tasting on March 16.
will visit California Citrus Sate Historic Park (pictured above) on
conference will visit the Huntington Library and Gardens in Pasadena
on March 16 (pictured above).
is a perfect time for birding in Southern California - and we will
visit the UCR botanical gardens (pictured above) and other locations
on March 16.
conference will include a trip to Joshua Tree National Park on
Sunday, March 18 (pictured above).
A limited number of travel grants are available for
students and low-income scholars presenting at our 2018 conference.
Please note that membership in ASEH is required for applying. Click
here for more information.
a poster at the 2018 conference
If you are interested in presenting a poster at the
conference in Riverside, send your name, affiliation, and poster title
to firstname.lastname@example.org by October 31. Click
here for more information on the posters.
poster session at ASEH's 2017 conference in Chicago.
April 10-13, 2019
EH World Congress
July 23-26, 2019
hosting a future ASEH conference? Contact email@example.com
The October issue of Environmental
History includes articles on forestry in China, Poland, and
Lithuania, the Energy Crisis in 1970s America, and more. Click here for
from the archives
Click here to
view the 40th-anniversary slideshow of ASEH conferences that was shown
in Chicago (on Flickr).
Published quarterly by the American Society for
Environmental History. If you have an article, announcement, or an item
for the "member news" section of our next newsletter, send to
by December 8, 2017.
courtesy Riverside Convention and Visitors Bureau, UCR, and Lisa
column: building out the base
summer I participated in a symposium "on recent pasts and
possible futures for environmental activism" in Canada. One of
the speakers outlined efforts by the David Suzuki Foundation's Blue
Dot movement to enshrine the right to a healthy environment in the
Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. This is not a new idea.
Environmental lawyer David R. Boyd has been pushing the case for
years (see his two books with UBC Press, The
Right To A Healthy Environment: Revitalizing Canada's Constitution,
Environmental Rights Revolution: A Global Study of Constitutions,
Human Rights, and the Environment). But the Blue
Dot campaign, which began in 2014, takes the idea that all
Canadians should have the right to drink clean water, breathe fresh
air, and eat healthy food - a right recognized in well over 100
countries but not my own - to the streets in an effort to scale the
Everest of constitutional change.
In essence, the Blue Dot campaign encourages
individuals to join with others to press their communities to pass
municipal declarations in support of claims for healthy
environments. With growing numbers of communities calling for
action, the reasoning goes, provincial and federal politicians will
be moved to pass environmental bills of rights that will prepare
the ground for a charter amendment. By mid-2017, 25000 campaign
volunteers had enlisted over 100,000 supporters and almost 160
municipalities had declared their support. The campaign is building
a web from the bottom up: concerned individuals enlist neighbors
who come together to change a city, and cities will come together
to change a nation.
This strategy caught my attention - and got me
thinking about ASEH. Our challenge is not to scale the heights of
constitutional change but to buttress our foundations, by reaching
out to those who cannot reach the high peak of our annual
conference. As the costs of attending these meetings increases,
reluctance to contribute to GHG emissions by flying long distances
grows, and shrinking university budgets and research funds make it
more difficult to defray the costs of participation, we might well
hear more calls for alternate activities and fora. Perhaps we can
anticipate that need, and build out our base of engagement with the
field, by fostering local and regional environmental history webs
in our communities.
These might - probably should - take quite different
forms: here informal gatherings of interested people (ASEH members
and others) coming together occasionally for discussion; there a
formal speaker series; elsewhere a weekend retreat or field trip.
The possibilities are many. We already have several prototypes to
emulate or adapt: the quite diverse NiCHE regional networks, and
the "summer schools" held immediately prior to the
annual meeting of the Canadian Historical Association each year (http://niche-canada.org);
the Boston Environmental History Seminar under the auspices of the
Massachusetts Historical Society (https://www.masshist.org/calendar/seminars/environmental-history );
the activities of the Yale Environmental History Working Group, and
its recurring regional conference (http://environmentalhistory.yale.edu/programs/conferences);
and the annual retreat of the Cascadia Environmental History
Collaborative (for more on which see Hayley Brazier, "Practicing
in Place: The Environmental History Retreat," Environmental History Field
Notes 1, 2016. The list goes on. I cannot offer an
inventory. But I can see lots of room for exciting new endeavors
likely to yield enormous personal, institutional, and disciplinary
Yes, there is work involved, and money (in various
amounts) too. But be not daunted. Working with colleagues,
enriching the experiences of students, raising the profile of
environmental history, and fostering excitement about (and a sense
of the intellectual, environmental, and social value of) our
scholarly exertions are precious rewards in their own right.
Collaborations across departments, institutes, and institutions -
to which our field lends itself - can help to loosen purse strings.
I will work to establish a modest fund, beginning in 2018, to
provide seed money for promising efforts along the lines hinted at
here; I encourage you to share your ideas, and details of your
plans, by submitting a 250-300- word piece to this newsletter
and/or by joining a planned discussion of the topic during our
meeting in Riverside.
In sum, I encourage all ASEH members to open
discussions (with colleagues and others in their cities and
localities) about the kinds of regional initiatives that could
benefit their communities, defined as broadly as is appropriate.
Bringing such proposals to fruition would do much to strengthen our
field, and ultimately ASEH, by increasing awareness of what we are
about and encouraging those who do not necessarily think of
themselves as environmental historians to join us. As David Suzuki,
the doyen of Canadian environmental campaigners and leading figure
in the Blue Dot movement is fond of saying: "History shows
that informed individuals who come together to build a groundswell
of opinion and pressure are a powerful force for positive
Graeme Wynn, ASEH President
advisory board - reorganized and
Perhaps more than ever, the need to assist our members
in developing their professional skills and finding gainful
employment and for applying our expertise to illuminating the
public's understanding of environmental issues is vital. It was in
this spirit that the Professional
Development and Public Engagement Advisory Board was
reorganized this past summer under new leadership and with renewed
vigor. Cody Ferguson of Fort Lewis College took over as chair of
the Board in June and, with direction and assistance from ASEH
President Graeme Wynn, worked with the revised board membership to
identify priorities and activities for the Board for the next two
The Board's plans for this year include:
- Organizing a roundtable at the 2017
meeting in Riverside titled "Bridging the Divide-How can
environmental historians better engage our students and the
- Collaborating with the Graduate Student
Caucus to host a CV/resume writing clinic at the 2017 meeting
and adding a professional networking component to the Graduate
Student happy hour;
- Increasing the ASEH's social media
presence including starting a blog related to professional
development and public engagement issues;
- Liaising and supporting the work of the ad
hoc Advisory Committee on Political Engagement.
In the longer run, we hope to continue to support and
create new opportunities for graduate and newly-graduated scholars
to participate in the ASEH's successful internship program and to
continue building relationships with environmental professionals
outside of academia to open new employment prospects for our
members. If you would like to be part of these initiatives or have
other creative ideas for how we can better serve our membership in
terms of professional development and public engagement, please
contact Cody Ferguson at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to
seeing all of you in Riverside!
fourth book, Sustaining Lake Superior:
An Extraordinary Lake in a Changing World, has recently
been published by Yale University Press. Lake Superior - the
largest lake in the world - has had a remarkable history, including
resource extraction and industrial exploitation that nearly caused
collapse. But in the past 50 years, thanks to grassroots efforts,
the lake experienced surprising recovery and rebirth. Nancy offers
a rich portrait of the lake's environmental history, asking what
lessons we can learn from its conservation history as we face new
threats from climate change.
received a Fulbright Core Scholar research grant to
Nicaragua for the fall 2017 semester for his project "Paths to
Resilience: A Collaborative Environmental History of
Sustainable Development in Totogalpa." See: https://visionesolares.wordpress.com/
This fall, ASEH has two positions available:
Editor for Environmental
ASEH and the Forest History Society seek applicants to
serve as editor of the journal Environmental History for a
5-year term beginning July 2019. The successful applicant will
serve as editor-elect for a transition period of 6 to 12 months.
For information on qualifications, responsibilities, application
materials, and search procedures click
here. Interested parties may request further information from
chair of the search committee by writing to Nancy_Jacobs@brown.edu.
Review of applications will begin on January 15, 2018; the final deadline for
receipt of applications is February 1, 2018.
This full-time position starts in October 2018. Deadline for application:
December 20, 2017. Click here for details.
For additional positions open at Michigan State University,
University of Oklahoma, American University, University of Oregon,
and more, click here.
Final Notice - ASEH
ASEH will offer the following awards in 2018. Click on
the links for application requirements - all submissions are due on
November 17, 2017.
here for information on the George Perkins Marsh Prize for best
book in environmental history
here for information on the Alice Hamilton Prize for best
article outside journal Environmental
here for information on the Rachel Carson Prize for best
dissertation in environmental history
Please note that authors published in our journal Environmental History
will automatically be considered for the Leopold-Hidy Prize for
best article; no need to submit anything.
Service and Achievement
ASEH is accepting nominations for the Distinguished
Scholar Award, Distinguished Service Award, and Public Outreach
Project Award. Click here
for a link to the brief form to submit for nomination (scroll
Final Notice - ASEH
Samuel P. Hays Fellowship Applications
It is open to practicing historians (either academic,
public, or independent). Graduate students are ineligible. A Ph.D.
is not required. Funding is for 2018.
To apply, please submit the following items:
- A two-page statement (500 words)
explaining your project and how you intend to use the research
- A c.v. no more than two pages in length.
All items for the Samuel P. Hays Research Fellowship
must be submitted electronically to email@example.com by November 17, 2017.
Final Notice - ASEH Hal
Rothman Fellowship Applications
Students enrolled in any Ph.D. program worldwide are eligible to
apply. Funding is for 2018.
To apply, please submit the following three items:
- Two-page statement (500 words) explaining
your project and how you intend to use the research funds.
- A c.v. no more than two pages in length.
- A letter of recommendation from your
All items for the Hal Rothman Research Fellowship must
be submitted electronically to firstname.lastname@example.org by November 17, 2017.
ASEH has partnered with
the Newberry Library in Chicago to offer an annual research
fellowship. Membership in ASEH required. Click here
for more info. Deadline
for application: December 15, 2017.
The National Council on Public History offers more
than $7,000 in awards annually. Submissions for the book award and
Kelley prize are due November 1, while those for outstanding
project, consulting excellence, and others are due December 1.
Nominate yourself or a colleague:http://ncph.org/about/awards/
Call for Manuscripts:
Culture, Transport, and Global Warming
students: events in riverside
Slam: Call for Participants
ASEH's conference in Riverside will include a
Three-Minute Thesis Slam during the 2018 meeting in Riverside.
There will be small monetary prizes for the top three finishers as
determined by the judges: Brian Frehner, Doug Sackman, and Lissa
If you are interested, please contact the moderator,
Kathleen Brosnan, at email@example.com. The
first fifteen Ph.D. students to contact Dr. Brosnan will be
included in the session. Kathy will compile a back-up list in case
anyone drops out of the competition.
First developed in Australia, Three Minute Thesis
competitions help doctoral candidates hone academic, presentation,
and research communication skills. Students have three minutes to
present compelling orations on their dissertation topics and their
significance to an intelligent but nonspecialist audience. Each
participant is permitted a single Powerpoint slide.
The Graduate Student Caucus has organized several
writing workshops for ASEH's conference in Riverside, including a
writing session scheduled for Saturday, March 17, 1:30-3:00
p.m. Deadline for signup: December 1, 2017. Click
here for more information.
Boundaries of Historical Study: Cross-Disciplinary Appointments and
Emily Webster has organized one of the caucus panels
at the Riverside conference, this one on teaching or writing across
disciplines. The panel includes professors who have
cross-disciplinary appointments in history and environmental
studies and teaching non-history specific classes. Scheduled for
Thursday, March 15, 8:30-10:00 a.m.
Reception and Meeting
The student reception and caucus meeting is set for
Wednesday, March 14, 8:30-10:00 p.m., after the opening reception.
ASEH has a mentoring program to assist students and
new professionals with career advice, help with conference
participation, and more. If you are interested in participating, click
aseh news is a publication of the
American Society for Environmental History
University of British Columbia, President
Boston College, Vice President/President Elect
Mark Madison, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Treasurer
Sarah Elkind, San Diego State University, Secretary
Historical Research Associates, Inc.-Missoula
Western Michigan University
Univeristy of Hawaiʻi-Mānoa
Rachel Carson Center-Munich
Cindy Ott, University of Delaware
Valencius, Boston University
Harvard University, president of grad student caucus
Ex Officio, Past Presidents:
University of Oklahoma
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Ex Officio, Editor, Environmental History:
Lisa Brady, Boise State University
Ex Officio, Executive Director and Editor, aseh
Lisa Mighetto, University of Washington-Tacoma