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HIST 355 - American Environmental History

  • 3 credits

This course deals with the relationship between humans and the environment with special attention to how that relationship has changed over time in America. It addresses the ways that environmental history can improve our understanding of American history more generally and of contemporary environmental challenges.


3 credits of HIST; completion of 45 credits

Textbooks and Materials

Section 801


  • Taming Manhattan: Environmental Battles in the Antebellum City (2017)
    McNeur, Catherine
    ISBN: 978-0674979758
  • Crimes Against Nature: Squatters, Poachers, Thieves, and the Hidden History of American Conservation (2014)
    Jacoby, Karl
    ISBN: 978-0520282292
  • Love Canal Revisited: Race, Class, and Gender in Environmental Activism (2008)
    Elizabeth Blum
    ISBN: 9780700618200

Textbooks and materials can be purchased at the CSU Bookstore unless otherwise indicated.

Students should be able to obtain used books.


Douglas Sheflin

I earned my PhD at the University of Colorado at Boulder where I studied American history with an emphasis on environmental history and the history of the American West. My approach to teaching is pretty straightforward. Historians study the past so that we can achieve some sort of “leverage on the moment.” History does not repeat itself, but there are certainly echoes, and as we look at the past we try to identify key moments that can help us understand the present. That observation informs my approach in both the residential and virtual classroom.