Fall 2022

Footprints on the Earth

Listed in: Anthropology and Sociology, as SOCI-226  |  Environmental Studies, as ENST-226


Hannah A. Holleman (Section 01)


(Offered as SOCI 226 and ENST 226) Creating a more sustainable relationship between human society and the rest of nature requires changing the way we relate to one another as humans. This course will explain why, while answering a number of associated questions and introducing the exciting and engaged field of environmental sociology. We study the anthropogenic drivers of environmental change from an interdisciplinary and historical perspective to make sense of pressing socio-ecological issues, including climate change, sustainability and justice in global food production, the disproportionate location of toxic waste disposal in communities of color, biodiversity loss, desertification, freshwater pollution and unequal access, the accumulation and trade in electronic waste, the ecological footprint of the Internet, and more. We examine how these issues are linked to broad inequalities within society, which are reflected in, and exacerbated by, persistent problems with environmental racism, the unaddressed legacies of colonialism, and other contributors to environmental injustice worldwide. Industrialization and the expansionary tendencies of the modern economic system receive particular attention, as these continue to be central factors promoting ecological change. Throughout the course a hopeful perspective in the face of such interrelated challenges is encouraged as we study promising efforts and movements that emphasize both ecological restoration and achievement of a more just, democratic world.

Course readings include foundational texts in environmental sociology, as well as the most current research on course topics. Writing and research assignments allow for the development of in-depth analyses of social and environmental issues relevant to students' community, everyday life, personal experience, and concerns.

Limited to 18 students. Fall semester. Professor Holleman.

How to handle overenrollment: Priority will be given to students in Anthropology and Sociology and Environmental Studies, with space reserved for undeclared freshmen and sophomores.

Students who enroll in this course will likely encounter and be expected to engage in the following intellectual skills, modes of learning, and assessment: Emphasis on written work, readings, independent research, oral presentations, group work, in-class discussion and active participation.

SOCI 226 - LEC

Section 01
M 12:30 PM - 1:50 PM FAYE 117
W 12:30 PM - 1:50 PM FAYE 117

This is preliminary information about books for this course. Please contact your instructor or the Academic Coordinator for the department, before attempting to purchase these books.

ISBN Title Publisher Author(s) Comment Book Store Price
Ecological Revolutions: Nature, Gender, and Science in New England University of North Carolina Press Merchant, Carolyn Amherst Books TBD
Living in Denial: Climate Change, Emotions, and Everyday Life MIT Press Norgaard, Kari Marie Amherst Books TBD
Resisting Global Toxics: Transnational Movements for Environmental Justice MIT Press Pellow, David Naguib Amherst Books TBD
Our History is the Future: Standing Rock Versus the Dakota Access Pipeline, and the Long Tradition of Indigenous Resistance Verso Estes, Nick Amherst Books TBD

These books are available locally at Amherst Books.


2023-24: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Spring 2015, Fall 2016, Fall 2017, Fall 2018, Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2024