- List of Contributors
- Introduction: A New Environmental History
- Beyond Weather: The Culture and Politics of Climate History
- Animals and the Intimacy of History
- Beyond Virgin Soils: Disease as Environmental History
- Seas of Grass: Grasslands in World Environmental History
- New Patterns in Old Places: Forest History for the Global Present
- The Tropics: A Brief History of an Environmental Imaginary
- And All Was Light?—Science and Environmental History
- Toward an Environmental History of Technology
- New Chemical Bodies: Synthetic Chemicals, Regulation, and Human Health
- Rethinking American Exceptionalism: Toward a Transnational History of National Parks, Wilderness, and Protected Areas
- Restoration and the Search for Counter-Narratives
- Region, Scenery, and Power: Cultural Landscapes in Environmental History
- A Metabolism of Society: Capitalism for Environmental Historians
- Owning Nature: Toward an Environmental History of Private Property
- Work, Nature, and History: A Single Question, that Once Moved Like Light
- The Nature of Desire: Consumption in Environmental History
- Law and the Environment
- Confluences of Nature and Culture: Cities in Environmental History
- Race and Ethnicity in Environmental History
- Women and Gender: Useful Categories of Analysis in Environmental History
- Conquest to Convalescence: Nature and Nation in United States History
- Boundless Nature: Borders and the Environment in North America and Beyond
- Crossing Boundaries: The Environment in International Relations
- The Politics of Nature
Abstract and Keywords
This chapter examines the intersection between environmental history and urban history, with emphasis on the place of nature in the city and vice versa. More specifically, it considers the central role of cities in environmental history as confluences of nature and culture. The chapter begins with an overview of urban origins and natural settings, particularly the creation of colonial cities by settlers and early efforts to merge nature and the city. It then turns to a discussion of how industrialization and urbanization transformed nature into capital and cities, what makes American cities different from other cities of the world, and scholarly work that explores the link between nature and the city. Finally, it assesses thematic variations on environmental urban history, focusing on disasters, inequality, and sprawl.
Lawrence Culver is Associate Professor of History at Utah State University. He is the author of The Frontier of Leisure: Southern California and the Shaping of Modern America (2010).
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