2017-2018 Call for Proposals

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The Boston Environmental History Seminar is an occasion for scholars as well as interested members of the public to discuss aspects of American environmental history from prehistory to the present day. Presenters come from a variety of disciplines including history, urban planning, and environmental management. Six to eight sessions take place annually during the academic year, and most focus on works in progress.

 

Seminar meetings revolve around the discussion of a precirculated paper. Sessions open with remarks from the essayist and an assigned commentator, after which the discussion is opened to the floor. After each session, the Society serves a light buffet supper.

 

Subscribe to this seminar series for $25, and you will receive access to the seminar papers for THREE series: the Boston Area Early American History Seminar, the Boston Environmental History Seminar, and the Boston Seminar on Modern American Society and Culture. We recognize that topics frequently resonate across these three fields; now, mix and match the seminars that you attend!

May

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Environmental History Seminar Canceled: Harvest for War: Fruits, Nuts, Imperialism, and Gas Mask Manufacture in the United States During World War I 9 May 2017.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Gerald Fitzgerald, George Mason University Nicoletta Gullace, University of New Hampshire This session was previously scheduled for Tuesday, February 21, 2017. Part of a ...

This session was previously scheduled for Tuesday, February 21, 2017.

Part of a larger book length study, this essay examines the use of seemingly exotic foodstuffs and industrial waste in the form of fruit pits for the manufacture of a high-density carbon filter critical for defense against chemical weapons. It involves not only environmental and military history but also the history of science and biology. The essay includes analysis of transportation networks within the context of 19th-century US imperialism, especially from a resource allocation perspective.

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Environmental History Seminar The Winter Workscape: Weather and the Meaning of Industrial Capitalism in the Northern Forest, 1850-1950 16 May 2017.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Jason L. Newton, Syracuse University Comment: Richard W. Judd, University of Maine This session was previously scheduled for March 14, 2017. Industrial logging ...

This session was previously scheduled for March 14, 2017.

Industrial logging operators used the winter weather, wood, simple machines, and muscle power alone to increase the production and transportation of saw logs to reach industrial scale and efficiency. Drawing on methods from environmental and labor history and the history of slavery and capitalism, this essay characterizes industrial capitalism as a force that will sustain seemingly anachronistic modes of production as long as they remain profitable. It shows that increased efficiency and scale need not always lead to massive carbon emissions.

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Environmental History Seminar Canceled:
Harvest for War: Fruits, Nuts, Imperialism, and Gas Mask Manufacture in the United States During World War I
9 May 2017.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Gerald Fitzgerald, George Mason University Nicoletta Gullace, University of New Hampshire

This session was previously scheduled for Tuesday, February 21, 2017.

Part of a larger book length study, this essay examines the use of seemingly exotic foodstuffs and industrial waste in the form of fruit pits for the manufacture of a high-density carbon filter critical for defense against chemical weapons. It involves not only environmental and military history but also the history of science and biology. The essay includes analysis of transportation networks within the context of 19th-century US imperialism, especially from a resource allocation perspective.

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Environmental History Seminar The Winter Workscape: Weather and the Meaning of Industrial Capitalism in the Northern Forest, 1850-1950 16 May 2017.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 7:30PM Jason L. Newton, Syracuse University Comment: Richard W. Judd, University of Maine

This session was previously scheduled for March 14, 2017.

Industrial logging operators used the winter weather, wood, simple machines, and muscle power alone to increase the production and transportation of saw logs to reach industrial scale and efficiency. Drawing on methods from environmental and labor history and the history of slavery and capitalism, this essay characterizes industrial capitalism as a force that will sustain seemingly anachronistic modes of production as long as they remain profitable. It shows that increased efficiency and scale need not always lead to massive carbon emissions.

close

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