Academic year
2021/2022 Syllabus of previous years
Official course title
Course code
LMH030 (AF:349174 AR:188818)
On campus classes
ECTS credits
Degree level
Master's Degree Programme (DM270)
Educational sector code
2nd Semester
Course year
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The aim of the course is to learn to think critically and historically about the environment and our multifaceted relations with it over time and from a global history perspective.
To become capable of analyzing and discussing philosophical sources and critically interpret them.
To critically re-elaborate the information about environment and politics of life received by medias or scientists, discuss and argue their own analysis of them.
Curiosity, enthusiasm and readiness to engage with challenging historical and philosophical discussions and readings.
The first part of the course will illustrate the conceptual and methodological tools that philosophy and the history of science offer to orient oneself in that indistinct set of theories and practices linked to the politics of life and the environment. The second part, on the other hand, will be more applied and the lessons will be dedicated specifically to the analysis of volcanoes with the Environmental Humanities approach. In this case the volcano is a "tool for thinking" the transdisciplinarity of certain socio-political dynamics, the relationship between the development of scientific disciplines and sites of observation of nature, human intentionality and the materiality of the environment, the multidimensionality of natural disasters since the modern age. We will also face risk perception, management and prevention in history.
The students will also attend some workshops given by professionals from the world of journalism, architecture, philosophy of technoscience, etc., on topics ranging from the origin of the relationship between tourism and climate change to the regeneration of urban peripheries. These are workshops with different languages and subjects, so the students, using what they have learnt in the course, will have to demonstrate that they are able to critically re-elaborate the information received, discuss and argue their own analysis of the interventions.
References to papers and book chapters will be given, distribuited and updated during the course, as well as content, summaries and the order of each lesson.
However, we will study parts of:
David McCallam, Volcanoes in Eighteenth-Century Europe: An Essay in Environmental Humanities, Liverpool: Liverpool University Press. 2019. Oxford University Studies in the Enlightenment, 2019
Natural Disasters, Cultural Responses. Case Studies toward a Global Environmental History, Edited by Christof Mauch and Christian Pfister, Lexington Books, 2009.
Laurent Testot and Katherine Throssell, Cataclysms: An Environmental History of Humanity, University of Chicago Press, 2021
The students’ preparation will be verified through their active participation in the classes, a final oral exam and some homeworks.
The course is divided into two parts, with active participation of students and workshops by international professionals with very varied profiles.

This subject deals with topics related to the macro-area "Climate change and energy" and contributes to the achievement of one or more goals of U. N. Agenda for Sustainable Development

This programme is provisional and there could still be changes in its contents.
Last update of the programme: 23/03/2022