The Department of History has a strong program in environmental history with an international focus. Scholars in American, Latin American, European, and Chinese History focus their work on the complex history of human beings and the environment in which they live. A growing number of courses in Environmental History are offered at the undergraduate level, and a large number of graduate students pursue M.A.s. and Ph.D.s in this field of study. Faculty and graduate students regularly present their work at a wide variety of History conferences, and one of our colleagues recently headed the American Society for Environmental History.
Kathleen A. Brosnan: (Ph.D., University of Chicago)
Kathleen Brosnan joined the History faculty in 2012 as the Travis Chair. Her research and teaching interests include the American West, environmental history, urban history, legal history, and public history. She is the author of Uniting Mountain and Plain: Cities, Law and Environmental Change along the Front Range and the co-editor of City Dreams, Country Schemes: Community and Identity in the American West (with Amy Scott) and the forthcoming Energy Capitals: Global Influence, Local Impact (with Joseph Pratt and Martin Melosi). Brosnan edited the prize-winning Encyclopedia of American Environmental History, which included some 365 authors, and has contributed articles to various edited volumes and journals, such as Environmental History and the Catholic Historical Review. As a public historian, she has worked on a Newberry Library exhibit and a National Park Service national landmark nomination and directed the creation of an online exhibit, To Bear Fruit for Our Race: the History of African American Physicians in Houston. Brosnan currently is writing an environmental history of the Napa wine industry. She has served on numerous editorial boards and held elected positions in the American Society for Environmental History and the Western History Association. Brosnan earned a J.D. from the University of Illinois and a Ph.D. in history from the University of Chicago.
Sterling Evans: (Ph.D., University of Kansas)
Dr. Evans joined the History faculty in 2009 as the Welsh Chair. He has research and teaching interests in the history of the trans-national Great Plains, the U.S-Mexican and U.S.-Canadian borderlands, agricultural history, and environmental history. These interests meet in his book Bound in Twine: The History and Ecology of the Henequen-Wheat Complex for Mexico and the American and Canadian Plains, which won the Theodore Saloutos Best Book Prize from the Agricultural History Society in 2008 and also the Caroline Bancroft Award in 2009. He also edited the books The Borderlands of the American and Canadian Wests: Essays on Regional History of the 49th Parallel and American Indians in American History, 1870-2001: A Companion Reader, and is the author of a number of articles in a variety of journals. He is active in such organizations as the Western History Association, the Agricultural History Society, the American Society for Environmental History, the Society for Latin American and Caribbean Environmental History, and the Rocky Mountain Council on Latin American Studies. His interest in the environmental history of Latin America prompted him to write The Green Republic: A Conservation History of Costa Rica, and to work on his current project, Damming Sonora: Water, Agriculture, and Environmental Change in Northwest Mexico. Evans received his doctorate in history from the University of Kansas.
Roberta Magnusson: (Ph.D., University of California,
Professor Magnusson is the author of Water Technology
in the Middle Ages: Cities, Monasteries, and Waterworks
after the Roman Empire that draws on insights from
environmental, technological, legal, social, and cultural
history and makes use of French, German, Italian, and
Latin sources. She is now at work exploring the origins
and development of public services in medieval English
cities and how such services--street-paving, sanitation,
bridge building and repair, fire protectionBshaped medieval
government and culture. Professor Magnusson is an award-winning
instructor who just received The Regents Award for
Superior Teaching and is also the History Department's
Director of Undergraduate Studies. She regularly offers
courses on medieval history including a popular course
on the Crusades and another on women in the medieval