The Climate Crisis and the Need for Utopian Thinking

Contributing editor Graeme Pente highlights the prescience of nineteenth-century utopian thinker J.A. Etzler and what that might offer us in the face of climate catastrophe. The future is grim. David Wallace-Wells’s recent New York Times bestseller The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming (2019) looks unflinchingly at what the latest science on climate change suggests is…

The Meanings of ‘Getting More People Outdoors’

Today’s piece is by Anna Kramer, a doctoral student in the History Department at CU Boulder. She studies, among other things, public lands and outdoor recreation in the American West. Before beginning graduate school she worked for the National Wildlife Federation and the American Alpine Club. Follow her on Twitter @akiltykramer.. Human waste piled up along the…

Finding the Words: An Account of UW-Madison’s 2016 CHE Graduate Student Symposium

Erstwhile editor Julia Frankenbach recounts her experience at “E is for Environment,” UW-Madison’s recent graduate student symposium hosted by the Center for Culture, History & the Environment (CHE). Last Saturday morning, an unfamiliar rosy light filtered through curtains. Expecting a rosy sunrise, I looked from my window on the fourth floor of a conference center…

California’s Response to Historic Drought: Too Little Too Late?

Erstwhile’s Sara Porterfield gives her thoughts on California’s new water restrictions and the prescient historians who anticipated the West’s current drought.  This past Wednesday California Governor Jerry Brown announced the state’s first-ever mandatory water restrictions in response to the severe drought gripping the state. While snowpack throughout the American West is at a record low, snowpack in…