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Stop by Berghahn Books at ASEH 2017 Conference!

We are exited to announce that we will be present at the 2017 American Society for Environmental History Conference in Chicago, IL, March 29- April 2, 2017. Please stop by the Berghahn table to browse our latest selection of books at a special discount price & pick up free journal samples.

 

If you are unable to attend, we would like to provide you with a special discount offer. Receive a 25% discount on all Environmental Studies titles found on our website,  Valid through May 2nd, 2017. At checkout, simply enter the discount code ASEH17. Browse our newly released Geography and Environmental Studies 2017/2018 Catalog or visit our website,­ now with new enhanced subject searching features for a complete listing of all published and forthcoming titles.

Below is a preview of some of our newest releases on display:


 

Environment in History: International Perspectives Series

Published in association with the European Society for Environmental History (ESEH), and the Rachel Carson Center (RCC)

The relationship between human society and the natural world is being studied with increased urgency and interest. Investigating this relationship from historical, cultural, and political perspectives, the monographs and collected volumes in this series showcase high-quality research in environmental history and cognate disciplines in the social and natural sciences. The series strives to bridge both national and disciplinary divides, with a particular emphasis on European, transnational, and comparative research.

 

Volume 11

INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS AND ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION
Conservation and Globalization in the Twentieth Century
Edited by Wolfram Kaiser and Jan-Henrik Meyer

 

Pollution, resource depletion, habitat management, and climate change are all issues that necessarily transcend national boundaries. Accordingly, they and other environmental concerns have been a particular focus for international organizations from before the First World War to the present day. This volume is the first to comprehensively explore the environmental activities of professional communities, NGOs, regional bodies, the United Nations, and other international organizations during the twentieth century. It follows their efforts to shape debates about environmental degradation, develop binding intergovernmental commitments, and—following the seminal 1972 Conference on the Human Environment—implement and enforce actual international policies.

Read Introduction: International Organizations and Environmental Protection in the Global Twentieth Century

 

Volume 10

IN THE NAME OF THE GREAT WORK
Stalin’s Plan for the Transformation of Nature and its Impact in Eastern Europe
Edited by Doubravka Olšáková

 

Beginning in 1948, the Soviet Union launched a series of wildly ambitious projects to implement Joseph Stalin’s vision of a total “transformation of nature.” Intended to increase agricultural yields dramatically, this utopian impulse quickly spread to the newly communist states of Eastern Europe, captivating political elites and war-fatigued publics alike. By the time of Stalin’s death, however, these attempts at “transformation”—which relied upon ideologically corrupted and pseudoscientific theories—had proven a spectacular failure. This richly detailed volume follows the history of such projects in three communist states—Poland, Hungary, and Czechoslovakia—and explores their varied, but largely disastrous, consequences.

Read Introduction: The Stalin Plan for the Transformation of Nature and the East European Experience

 

Volume 9

THE NATURE OF GERMAN IMPERIALISM
Conservation and the Politics of Wildlife in Colonial East Africa
Bernhard Gissibl

 

Today, the East African state of Tanzania is renowned for wildlife preserves such as the Serengeti National Park, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, and the Selous Game Reserve. Yet few know that most of these initiatives emerged from decades of German colonial rule. This book gives the first full account of Tanzanian wildlife conservation up until World War I, focusing upon elephant hunting and the ivory trade as vital factors in a shift from exploitation to preservation that increasingly excluded indigenous Africans. Analyzing the formative interactions between colonial governance and the natural world, The Nature of German Imperialism situates East African wildlife policies within the global emergence of conservationist sensibilities around 1900.

Read Introduction: Doorsteps in Paradise

 

Volume 8

DISRUPTED LANDSCAPES
State, Peasants and the Politics of Land in Postsocialist Romania
Stefan Dorondel

 

The fall of the Soviet Union was a transformative event for the national political economies of Eastern Europe, leading not only to new regimes of ownership and development but to dramatic changes in the natural world itself. This painstakingly researched volume focuses on the emblematic case of postsocialist Romania, in which the transition from collectivization to privatization profoundly reshaped the nation’s forests, farmlands, and rivers. From bureaucrats abetting illegal deforestation to peasants opposing government agricultural policies, it reveals the social and political mechanisms by which neoliberalism was introduced into the Romanian landscape.

Read Introduction: Privatizing the State and the Transformation of the Agrarian Landscape

 

Volume 7

CYCLING AND RECYCLING
Histories of Sustainable Practices
Edited by Ruth Oldenziel and Helmuth Trischler

 

Technology has long been an essential consideration in public discussions of the environment, with the focus overwhelmingly on creating new tools and techniques. In more recent years, however, activists, researchers, and policymakers have increasingly turned to mobilizing older technologies in their pursuit of sustainability. In fascinating case studies ranging from the Early Modern secondhand trade to utopian visions of human-powered vehicles, the contributions gathered here explore the historical fortunes of two such technologies—bicycling and waste recycling—tracing their development over time and providing valuable context for the policy successes and failures of today.

Read Introduction: How Old Technologies Became Sustainable: An Introduction

 

Volume 6

FAULT LINES
Earthquakes and Urbanism in Modern Italy
Giacomo Parrinello

WINNER OF THE 2016 AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF ITALIAN STUDIES  BOOK AWARD FOR 20TH & 21ST CENTURY CATEGORY

WINNER OF THE 2016 ANCI-STORIA BOOK PRIZE. AWARDED BY ITALIAN SOCIETY FOR THE STUDY OF MODERN HISTORY (SISSCO) AND NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF ITALIAN MUNICIPALITIES (ANCI)

 

“an original an innovative study…an effective and fascinating narrative structure…a very rigorous research” · From the motivation of the Anci Storia Award

Earth’s fractured geology is visible in its fault lines. It is along these lines that earthquakes occur, sometimes with disastrous effects. These disturbances can significantly influence urban development, as seen in the aftermath of two earthquakes in Messina, Italy, in 1908 and in the Belice Valley, Sicily, in 1968. Following the history of these places before and after their destruction, this book explores plans and developments that preceded the disasters and the urbanism that emerged from the ruins. These stories explore fault lines between “rural” and “urban,” “backwardness” and “development,” and “before” and “after,” shedding light on the role of environmental forces in the history of human habitats.

Read Introduction: Can Earthquakes Speak?

 

Volume 5

RIVERS, MEMORY, AND NATION-BUILDING
A History of the Volga and Mississippi Rivers
Dorothy Zeisler-Vralsted

 

Rivers figure prominently in a nation’s historical memory, and the Volga and Mississippi have special importance in Russian and American cultures. Beginning in the pre-modern world, both rivers served as critical trade routes connecting cultures in an extensive exchange network, while also sustaining populations through their surrounding wetlands and bottomlands. In modern times, “Mother Volga” and the “Father of Waters” became integral parts of national identity, contributing to a sense of Russian and American exceptionalism. Furthermore, both rivers were drafted into service as the means to modernize the nation-state through hydropower and navigation. Despite being forced into submission for modern-day hydrological regimes, the Volga and Mississippi Rivers persist in the collective memory and continue to offer solace, recreation, and sustenance. Through their histories we derive a more nuanced view of human interaction with the environment, which adds another lens to our understanding of the past.

 

Volume 4

CREATING WILDERNESS
A Transnational History of the Swiss National Park
Patrick Kupper
Translated from the German by Giselle Weiss

Winner of the Turku Book Prize of the European Society for Environmental History and the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society.

 

“Well tied into the literature of national park studies worldwide, this exquisite book… chronicles the unique Swiss experience in creating and managing a national park in which wilderness was nonexistent… Highly recommended.” · Choice

The history of the Swiss National Park, from its creation in the years before the Great War to the present, is told for the first time in this book. Unlike Yellowstone Park, which embodied close cooperation between state-supported conservation and public recreation, the Swiss park put in place an extraordinarily strong conservation program derived from a close alliance between the state and scientific research. This deliberate reinterpretation of the American idea of the national park was innovative and radical, but its consequences were not limited to Switzerland. The Swiss park became the prime example of a “scientific national park,” thereby influencing the course of national parks worldwide.

 

Volume 3 In Paperback

MANAGING THE UNKNOWN
Essays on Environmental Ignorance
Edited by Frank Uekötter and Uwe Lübken

 

Information is crucial when it comes to the management of resources. But what if knowledge is incomplete, or biased, or otherwise deficient? How did people define patterns of proper use in the absence of cognitive certainty? Discussing this challenge for a diverse set of resources from fish to rubber, these essays show that deficient knowledge is a far more pervasive challenge in resource history than conventional readings suggest. Furthermore, environmental ignorance does not inevitably shrink with the march of scientific progress: these essays suggest more of a dialectical relationship between knowledge and ignorance that has different shapes and trajectories. With its combination of empirical case studies and theoretical reflection, the essays make a significant contribution to the interdisciplinary debate on the production and resilience of ignorance. At the same time, this volume combines insights from different continents as well as the seas in between and thus sketches outlines of an emerging global resource history.

Read Introduction: The Social Functions of Ignorance

 

Volume 2 In Paperback

POWERLESS SCIENCE?
Science and Politics in a Toxic World
Edited by Soraya Boudia and Nathalie Jas

 

“The book will be of interest to the new wave of anthropological studies on toxic contamination and will open the door for researchers and practitioners to actively reimagine what a regulatory apparatus that is de-centered from science might look like.” · Medical Anthropology Quarterly

 

In spite of decades of research on toxicants, along with the growing role of scientific expertise in public policy and the unprecedented rise in the number of national and international institutions dealing with environmental health issues, problems surrounding contaminants and their effects on health have never appeared so important, sometimes to the point of appearing insurmountable. This calls for a reconsideration of the roles of scientific knowledge and expertise in the definition and management of toxic issues, which this book seeks to do. It looks at complex historical, social, and political dynamics, made up of public controversies, environmental and health crises, economic interests, and political responses, and demonstrates how and to what extent scientific knowledge about toxicants has been caught between scientific, economic, and political imperatives.

Read Introduction: Greatness and Misery of Science in a Toxic World

 

Volume 1 In Paperback

CIVILIZING NATURE
National Parks in Global Historical Perspective
Edited by Bernhard Gissibl, Sabine Höhler and Patrick Kupper

 

“The book meets its aim of moving conservation scholarship in a new direction by providing analysis of the ‘national’’ (and not just the ‘park’) part of national parks.” · The Public Historian

National parks are one of the most important and successful institutions in global environmentalism. Since their first designation in the United States in the 1860s and 1870s they have become a global phenomenon. The development of these ecological and political systems cannot be understood as a simple reaction to mounting environmental problems, nor can it be explained by the spread of environmental sensibilities. Shifting the focus from the usual emphasis on national parks in the United States, this volume adopts an historical and transnational perspective on the global geography of protected areas and its changes over time. It focuses especially on the actors, networks, mechanisms, arenas, and institutions responsible for the global spread of the national park and the associated utilization and mobilization of asymmetrical relationships of power and knowledge, contributing to scholarly discussions of globalization and the emergence of global environmental institutions and governance.

Read Chapter 1. Unpacking Yellowstone: The American National Park in Global Perspective


Environmental Anthropology and Ethnobiology Series

Interest in environmental anthropology and ethnobiological knowledge has grown steadily in recent years, reflecting national and international concern about the environment and developing research priorities. `Studies in Environmental Anthropology and Ethnobiology’ is an international series based at the University of Kent at Canterbury. It is a vehicle for publishing up-to-date monographs and edited works on particular issues, themes, places or peoples which focus on the interrelationship between society, culture and the environment.

 

Volume 22 Forthcoming 

INDIGENEITY AND THE SACRED
Indigenous Revival and the Conservation of Sacred Natural Sites in the Americas
Edited by Fausto Sarmiento and Sarah Hitchner

 

This book presents current research in the political ecology of indigenous revival and its role in nature conservation in critical areas in the Americas. An important contribution to evolving studies on conservation of sacred natural sites (SNS), the book elucidates the complexity of development scenarios within cultural landscapes related to the appropriation of rurality, environmental change in indigenous territories, and new conservation management schemes. Indigeneity and the Sacred explores how these struggles for land, rights, and political power are embedded within physical landscapes, and how indigenous identity is reformed as globalizing forces simultaneously threaten and promote the notion of indigeneity.

 

Volume 20 New in Paperback

BEYOND THE LENS OF CONSERVATION
Malagasy and Swiss Imaginations of One Another
Eva Keller

 

“This book will make a great addition to undergraduate courses on Anthropology of the Environment and/or Development or Political Ecology. Keller’s highly readable style, in turn, will satisfy both those new to the subject and scholars already familiar with the topics of conservation practice in Madagascar. It could even become an important resource for those conservation experts who are trying – and (as the study shows) failing – to establish connections between distant places and people.” · Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute

The global agenda of Nature conservation has led to the creation of the Masoala National Park in Madagascar and to an exhibit in its support at a Swiss zoo, the centerpiece of which is a mini-rainforest replica. Does such a cooperation also trigger a connection between ordinary people in these two far-flung places? The study investigates how the Malagasy farmers living at the edge of the park perceive the conservation enterprise and what people in Switzerland see when looking towards Madagascar through the lens of the zoo exhibit. It crystallizes that the stories told in either place have almost nothing in common: one focuses on power and history, the other on morality and progress. Thus, instead of building a bridge, Nature conservation widens the gap between people in the North and the South.

Read Introduction

 

Volume 19 New in Paperback

SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT
An Appraisal from the Gulf Region
Edited by Paul Sillitoe

 

With growing evidence of unsustainable use of the world’s resources, such as hydrocarbon reserves, and related environmental pollution, as in alarming climate change predictions, sustainable development is arguably the prominent issue of the 21st century. This volume gives a wide ranging introduction focusing on the arid Gulf region, where the challenges of sustainable development are starkly evident. The Gulf relies on non-renewable oil and gas exports to supply the world’s insatiable CO2 emitting energy demands, and has built unsustainable conurbations with water supplies dependent on energy hungry desalination plants and deep aquifers pumped beyond natural replenishment rates. Sustainable Development has an interdisciplinary focus, bringing together university faculty and government personnel from the Gulf, Europe, and North America — including social and natural scientists, environmentalists and economists, architects and planners — to discuss topics such as sustainable natural resource use and urbanization, industrial and technological development, economy and politics, history and geography.

Read Introduction: Sustainable Development in the Gulf: Some Introductory Remarks


 

Related Titles:

New in Paperback

NIMBY IS BEAUTIFUL
Cases of Local Activism and Environmental Innovation around the World
Edited by Carol Hager and Mary Alice Haddad

 

NIMBY (Not In My Back Yard) protests are often criticized as parochial and short-lived, generating no lasting influence on broader processes related to environmental politics. This volume offers a different perspective. Drawing on cases from around the globe, it demonstrates that NIMBY protests, although always arising from a local concern in a particular community, often result in broader political, social, and technological change. Chapters include cases from Europe, North America, and Asia, engaging with the full political spectrum from established democracies to non-democratic countries. Regardless of political setting, NIMBY movements can have a positive and proactive role in generating innovative solutions to local as well as transnational environmental issues. Furthermore, those solutions are now serving as models for communities and countries around the world.

Read Introduction: A New Look at NIMBY

 

TRANSACTIONS WITH THE WORLD
Ecocriticism and the Environmental Sensibility of New Hollywood
Adam O’Brien

 

In their bold experimentation and bracing engagement with culture and politics, the “New Hollywood” films of the late 1960s and early 1970s are justly celebrated contributions to American cinematic history. Relatively unexplored, however, has been the profound environmental sensibility that characterized movies such as The Wild Bunch, Chinatown, and Nashville. This brisk and engaging study explores how many hallmarks of New Hollywood filmmaking, such as the increased reliance on location shooting and the rejection of American self-mythologizing, made the era such a vividly “grounded” cinematic moment. Synthesizing a range of narrative, aesthetic, and ecocritical theories, it offers a genuinely fresh perspective on one of the most studied periods in film history.

Read Introduction

 

Paperback Original 

CONTEXTUALIZING DISASTER
Edited by Gregory V. Button and Mark Schuller

NEW SERIES: Volume 1, Catastrophes in Context

 

Contextualizing Disaster offers a comparative analysis of six recent “highly visible” disasters and several slow-burning, “hidden,” crises that include typhoons, tsunamis, earthquakes, chemical spills, and the unfolding consequences of rising seas and climate change. The book argues that, while disasters are increasingly represented by the media as unique, exceptional, newsworthy events, it is a mistake to think of disasters as isolated or discrete occurrences. Rather, building on insights developed by political ecologists, this book makes a compelling argument for understanding disasters as transnational and global phenomena.

Read Introduction


BERGHAHN JOURNALS

 

Environment and Society

Advances in Research

 

Environment and Society publishes critical reviews of the latest research literature on environmental studies, including subjects of theoretical, methodological, substantive, and applied significance. Articles also survey the literature regionally and thematically and reflect the work of anthropologists, geographers, environmental scientists, and human ecologists from all parts of the world in order to internationalize the conversations within environmental anthropology, environmental geography, and other environmentally oriented social sciences.

 

Featured Article:

Less Than One But More Than Many: Anthropocene as Science Fiction and Scholarship-in-the-MakingHeather Anne Swanson, Nils Bubandt and Anna Tsing

 

Nature and Culture

 

Nature and Culture (NC) is a forum for the international community of scholars and practitioners to present, discuss, and evaluate critical issues and themes related to the historical and contemporary relationships that societies, civilizations, empires, regions, and nation-states have with nature.

 

Featured Article:

The Shifting Topology of Environmentalism: Human-Environment Relationships and Conceptual Trends in Two North American Organizational Histories

Anna J. Willow

 

Sibirica

Interdisciplinary Journal of Siberian Studies

 

Sibirica is a peer-reviewed interdisciplinary journal covering all aspects of the region and relations to neighboring areas, such as Central Asia, East Asia, and North America. The journal publishes articles, research reports, conference and book reviews on history, politics, economics, geography, cultural studies, anthropology, and environmental studies.

 

Featured Article:

The Fate of Fishing in Tsarist Russia: The Human-Fish Nexus in Lake Baikal

Nicholas B. Breyfogle