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Environment and History

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Environment and History

The Two Cultures Revisited: Environmental History and the Environmental Sciences

Donald Worster

Environment and History 2(1996): 3-14

The gap between the sciences and the humanities persists in our intellectual life, with significant consequences. The new field of environmental history represents an opportunity to bridge that gap, since it requires historians to become more conversant with the environmental sciences and apply their insights to the study of the past. I give examples of where that conversation has been has been helpful in rewriting history. However, the scientists are in need of the historians and humanists more than they commonly acknowledge. Environmental problems have their source in human culture, and to solve those problems we need the insights of the humanities.


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