US Environmental History Course Topics through the Civil War (Santa Monica Coll.)

Institution: Santa Monica College

Location: Santa Monica, CA

Participant: Leslie Kawaguchi

Year: 2016

Week 1
  • Small group discussion: What do you think are the top three environmental issues or concerns facing the United States today?
  • Introduction regarding recent “natural disasters”: natural vs. human caused?
  • What is Environmental History?
Week 2
  • Native Americans and the Environment (covers all regions of the U.S., including Alaska and Hawaii) examines how Natives utilized the resources of their areas, established their societies and cultural practices
Week 3
  • Native Americans and the Spanish in the Southwest and California
  • Native Americans and the French, Dutch, and English on the Atlantic coast
Week 4
  • Native Americans, Africans, and the English (and the Spanish in Florida)
Week 5
  • Population Diversity and the 18th-century Environment (including the Spanish in Florida, Russians in California, and Europeans in Hawaii)
  • Nature, the American Revolution, and the New Republic
Week 6
  • Rural Development in the 19th Century which focuses on the philosophies, populations, and policies that brought peoples westward
  • Urban Development in the 19th Century including immigration
Week 7
  • Nature and the Market Revolution
  • American Romanticism and Nature
Week 8
  • Cotton, Slavery, and the South
  • The Far West and Extraction includes miners, farmers, salmon, and ethnic diversity