The Economy of Nature and Nations|
Spring 2015 not offered
SISP 307, HIST 307|
|Certificates: Environmental Studies, International Relations|
On many of the key environmental problems of the 21st century, from climate change to biodiversity conservation, the perspectives of ecology and economics often seem poles apart. Ecology is typically associated with a skeptical stance toward economic growth and human intervention in the environment, while economics focuses on understanding (and often, celebrating) human activities of production, consumption, and growth. At the same time, ecology and economics share a common etymology: both words spring from the Greek oikos, or household. They also share much common history. This course thus explores the parallel histories of economics and ecology from the 18th century to the present, focusing on changing conceptions of the oikos over this period, from cameralism's vision of the household as a princely estate or kingdom, continuing through the emergence of ideas about national or imperial economic development, and culminating in the dominant 20th-century recasting of economics as being centrally concerned with problems of resource allocation. Simultaneously, it explores connections between changes in economics and the emergence of ecological science over this period, from Enlightenment natural history and early musings on the "economy of nature," to the design of markets for carbon credits today.
||Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Lecture / Discussion||Grading Mode: Graded|
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (CGST-MN)(ENVS-MN)(ENVS)(HIST-MN)(HIST)(SISP)(SISP-ScieDblMjr)
Andre Wakefield, THE DISORDERED POLICE STATE: GERMAN CAMERALISM AS SCIENCE AND PRACTICE (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2009)
Margaret Schabas, THE NATURAL ORIGINS OF ECONOMICS (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2006).
John Bellamy Foster, MARX'S ECOLOGY: MATERIALISM AND NATURE (New York: Monthly Review Press, 2000).
Robert L. Nadeau, THE WEALTH OF NATURE: HOW MAINSTREAM ECONOMICS HAS FAILED THE ENVIRONMENT (New York: Columbia University Press, 2003).
|Examinations and Assignments: |
In addition to brief weekly assignments based on the readings, students will prepare three short historiographical essays during the course of the semester.
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