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Undergraduate Programs

Environmental Humanities Minor

Environmental humanities—the study of ecological issues with humanities methodologies of interpretation, critique, historiography, and creative inquiry—is one of the most dynamic and quickly growing fields in the humanities, with wide applicability for students.

This minor provides a structure for students to master new methodologies and skills of critical analysis, encouraging them to investigate how culture, history, and imagination shape our understandings of ecological issues, and to interrogate how environmental problems and solutions have been narrated, defined, identified, and framed.

In addition to being a vital field of intellectual inquiry, academic concentrations in the environmental humanities make possible many planetary and community engagements, both as part of experiential learning and as part of post-college careers.

Program Advisor

Students who want to declare an environmental humanities minor, or who just want to discuss questions about the environmental humanities program should email Professor Leila Nadir at lnadir@ur.rochester.edu

Minor Requirements

The minor in environmental humanities consists of five classes. No more than two courses in one's major may be counted toward the minor. Students can use up to two courses from the social sciences towards the minor. Students can also use no more than one natural science course towards the minor.

Foundational Courses (Minimum Two Courses Required)

Two of the following:

  • EHU 245: Literature and the Modern Environmental Imagination (humanities)
  • HIS 225: Environmental History (social science)
  • PHL 230: Environmental Justice (humanities)
  • GSW 211: Politics of Nature: Gender, Race, and Environment (social science)

Capstone (Required)

 EHU 300: Environmental Humanities Advanced Seminar*

*Should be taken during your junior or senior year

Elective Courses (Two Courses)

Students can choose their two electives from the course list below or choose to take one or two additional foundation courses. Foundation courses cannot be counted towards both the foundation and elective requirement. 

  • AH 234: Art and the Environment (humanities)
  • AH 274: Cultural History of American Architecture (humanities)
  • AH 341: The Art of Infrastructure (humanities)
  • EHU 167M: Climate Futures (meliora seminar; humanities)*
  • EHU 240: Environmental Apocalypse and the Anthropocene (humanities)
  • EHU 250: Food Justice, Urban Farming, Social Practice (humanities)
  • EHU 267: EcoMedia (humanities)
  • EHU 268: Food, Media, Literature (humanities)
  • PHL 103: Contemporary Moral Problems (humanities)
  • PHL 135: Environmental Ethics (humanities)
  • PHL 120: Engineering Ethics (humanities)
  • SA 252A: New Media 2: Food, Justice, and Social Practice (humanities)
  • SA 253: New Media 2: Art Environment Action (humanities)
  • SA 253A: Advanced Video Art: Environment, Landscape, Action (humanities)
  • HIS 181: History of Eating and Food (social science)
  • HIS 219: Animal Histories (social science)
  • HIS 300: History of Nature (social science)
  • EES 103: Introduction to Environmental Science (natural science)
  • BIO 104: Ecosystem Conservation and Human Society (natural science)

 *Open only to first-year, incoming students; Requires application