Week 1: Introduction to Environmental Sociology, Animals and Society, Coronavirus as an Environmental Issue

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

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.

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

Week 2: New York City and Its Environment: Water and Sanitation Systems

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.

Week 3: Key Concepts: Environmental Justice, Ecological Modernization, Inverted Quarantine

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.”

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

Week 4: Environmental Justice in New York City, Community Engagement, Citizen Scientists

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

Ottinger, Gwen (2016) β€œCitizen engineers at the fenceline.” Issues in Science and Technology, 32(2): 72.

Week 5: Plastics, Recycling, Personal vs. Corporate Responsibility

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

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

Shaw, Wendy S. (2019) β€œTrashion treasure: A longitudinal view of the allure and re-functioning of discarded objects.” Environment and Planning D: Society and Space. 37(1):122–141.

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

Week 6: Animals and Industrial Production

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.

Pachirat, Timothy (2011) β€œHidden in plain sight.” In: Timothy Pachirat, Every Twelve Seconds: Industrialized Slaughter and the Politics of Sight. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.

Blanchette, Alex (2020) β€œIntroduction: The factory farm.” In: Alex Blanchette, Porkopolis: American Animality, Standardized Life, and the Factory Farm. Raleigh, NC: Duke University Press. [Links to Amazon preview page, awaiting for CUNY access]

Week 7: Extinctions, Struggles to Preserve Biodiveristy

Duffy, Rosaleen (2014) Waging a war to save biodiversity: The rise of militarized conservation.” International Affairs, 90(4), 819–834.

Fower, Cary (2009) β€œOne seed at a time, protecting the future of food.” Ted Talks. Available at:

Kolbert, Elizabeth. 2015. The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History. New York: Henry Holt and Company.

Week 8: The Future of Food

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.

Pollan, Michael (2009) In Defense of Food. London: Penguin Press.

Broad, Garrett M. (2020) β€œKnow your indoor farmer: Square Roots, techno-local food, and transparency as publicity.” American Behavioral Scientist, 64(11): 1588–1606.

Week 9: Soil and Land Ethics

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

Montgomery, David R. (2013) Excerpts from Dirt: The Erosion of Civilizations, 2nd ed. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.

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.

Berry, Wendell (1977) Excerpts from The Unsettling of America: Culture & Agriculture. Sierra Club Books.

Week 10: Subterranean Politics: Oil Extraction and Environmental Disasters

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.

Time (2010) β€œThe oil spill by the numbers.” Time. June 18.

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

Week 11: Energy and Development

Tilt, Bryan (2014) β€œThe moral economy of water and power.” In: Bryan Tilt, Dams and Development in China: The Moral Economy of Water and Power. New York: Columbia University Press.

Bridge, Gavin and Philippe Le Billon (2013) β€œDeveloping through oil.” In: Gavin Bridge and Philippe Le Billon, Oil. London: Polity Press.

Brown, Kate (2013) Excerpts from Plutopia: Nuclear Families, Atomic Cities, and the Great Soviet and American Plutonium Disasters. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Popovic, Nadja and Brad Plumer (2020) β€œHow does your state produce electricity.” The New York Times. October 28.

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

Week 12: Climate Crisis Denial and Science Communications

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

Lewandowsky, Stephan, Naomi Oreskes, James S. Risbey, Ben R. Newell, Michael Smithson (2015) β€œSeepage: Climate change denial and its effect on the scientific community.” Global Environmental Change, 33: 1–13.

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.

Week 13: Environmental Design and Inequalities

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

New York City Economic Development Corporation (2019) β€œLower Manhattan coastal resiliency.”

Nixon, Rob (2011) Excerpts from Slow Violence and the Environmentalism of the Poor. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Milman, Oliver (2020) β€œRich Americans’ homes generate 25% more greenhouse gasses than those less affluent.” July 21. The Guardian.

Week 14: Global Environmental Politics

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

β€œWorld Systems Theory” (n.d.) Wikipedia.

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

Week 15: Indigenous Perspectives on the Anthropocene; Final exam

Davis, Heather and Zoe Todd (2017) β€œOn the importance of a date, or, decolonizing the Anthropocene.” ACME: An International Journal for Critical Geographies, 16(4), 761–780.