Four Week Sequence

Week 1: Introduction to Environmental Sociology; New York City and Its Environment; Coronavirus and the Pandemic

Openstax. The environment and society. In Introduction to Sociology 2e. OpenStax CNX.

Schifman, Jonathan (2019) β€œHow New York City found clean water.” The Smithsonian Magazine. November 25.

Soll, David (2013) β€œIntroduction: The evolution of the watersystem.” In: David Soll, The Empire of Water: An Environmental and Political History of the New York City Water Supply. Ithica, NY: Cornell University Press.

Nagle, Robin (2013) β€œCenter of the Universe” and β€œGarbage Faeries.” Picking Up: On the Streets and Behind the Trucks with the Sanitation Workers of New York City. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Gee, A. and D. Anguiano (2020) We created the Anthropocene, and the Anthropocene is biting back. The Guardian. May 5.

Vidal, John (2020) β€œThe perfect conditions for coronavirus to emerge.” Scientific American. March 18.

van Doreen, Tom (2020) β€œPangolins and pandemics: The real Source of this crisis is human, not animal.” New Matilda. March 20.


Week 2: Key Sociological Concepts: Environmental Justice, Ecological Modernization, Inverted Quarantine, and Deep Ecology

Johnson, Ayana Elizabeth (2020) Podcast: β€œThe inseparable link between climate change and racial justice.” Short Wave. June 18.

EJ Definitions (n.d.) β€œA brief history of environmental justice & EJ definitions.”

Carter, Majora (2006) Greening the ghetto. Ted Talks.

MacLeod, Madison (2018) β€œThe inverted quarantine.” Zero Waste California. November 21.

Szasz, Andrew (2009) β€œDrinking.” In: Andrew Szasz, Shopping Our Way to Safety: How We Changed from Protecting the Environment to Protecting Ourselves. Minneapolis, MN: Minnesota University Press.

Schlosberg, David and Sara Rinfret (2008) β€œEcological modernisation, American style.” Environmental Politics, 17(2): 254–275.

β€œWhat is Deep Ecology” (n.d.) Wikipedia.

Driessen, Clemens, Leonie L.F.M. Heutinck (2015) β€œCows desiring to be milked? Milking robots and the co-evolution of ethics and technology on Dutch dairy farms.” Agriculture and Human Values 32, 3–20.


Week 3: Personal vs. Corporate Responsibility: Waste and Oil; Land Ethics

Dickinson, Tim (2020) β€œPlanet Plastic.” Rolling Stone. March 3.

β€œThe Crying Indian.” (1970). Keep America Beautiful campaign.

O’Neill, Kate (2019) β€œThe global political economy of waste.” In: Kate O’Neill, Waste. Cambridge: Polity Press.

CNBC (2020). β€œShould the US ban fracking?” January 5.

Freudenburg, William R. and Robert Gramling (2011) β€œStoried sunlight and its risks.” In:

William R. Freudenburg and Robert Gramling, Blowout in the Gulf: The BP Oil Spill Disaster and the Future of Energy in America. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2011.

60 minutes (2010) β€œBlowout: The Deepwater Horizon Disaster.” CBS.

Carrington, Damian (2020) β€œGlobal soils underpin life.” The Guardian. December 4.

Leopold, Aldo, et al. (1991) Excerpts from The River of the Mother of God and Other Essays by Aldo Leopold. Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press.

Week 4: Climate Crisis Denial and Science Communications; What Does it Mean to Build a Sustainable Future

Harvey, Jeffrey A et al. (2018) β€œInternet blogs, polar bears, and climate-change denial by proxy.” BioScience, 68(4): 281–287.

Oreskes, Naomi (2014) β€œWhy we should trust scientists.” Ted Talks.

Farrell, Justin (2016) β€œCorporate funding and ideological polarization about climate change.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 113: 92–97.

Friend, Tad (2019) β€œCan a burger help solve climate change.” New Yorker. September 23.

Barber, Dan (2020) Podcast β€œEating the whole farm.” Slate. April 21. Available at:

Schultz, Kathryn (2015) β€œThe really big one.” The New Yorker. July 20.

Sengupta, Somini and Julfikar Ali Manik (2020) β€œAs Bangladesh drowns.” The New York Times. July 30.

McDonnell, Tim (2018) β€œThe refugees that the world barely pays attention to.” NPR. June 20.