ASEH 2011

The 2011 meeting of the American Society for Environmental History will be held in Phoenix, Arizona, April 12-16. The organizing committee has set History and Sustainability: Stories of Progress, Hubris, Decline, and Resilience” as the conference theme, which is seen as welcoming papers on earlier periods and parts of the world outside North America. The committee would especially like to see medieval Europe represented in multi-period panels as well as some entire sessions on ancient/medieval/early modern topics. For the latter such ideas as sustainable or stable human/nature relationships; stipulated populations’ demand for food, fiber, fodder, etc., in relation to the ecological dynamics of their geographical range; scarcities and limits, and social response to over-consumption; means of restricting demand; resulting short- and long-term ecological changes have been mentioned. We have many stories about sustainability or its failure and should consider how to tell others about them.

Another centre of interest for Phoenix (as for the Portland meeting this spring) is the environmental history of war. Several panels were recruited for the Portland meeting but organizers were disappointed to have none but the most recent periods. If you have or want to develop a study on war and environment in early Europe, your interest will be most welcome. For now, contact Richard Tucker ( for further information, but he may pass you on to another committee member.

The conference is open to various formats of panels and presentations. All proposals will be received on line starting in March 2010. The deadline for submission is June 30, 2010.

Organizers of the Phoenix meeting have already planned extensive field trips to explore the desert in spring as well as other activities. The ASEH web site is

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