APS 235 Humans & Nature in Sthrn. App.

Prerequisite: GSTR 210

The Appalachian Mountains are one of Earth’s most beautiful creations. Possibly the oldest range in the world, the Appalachians are home to unprecedented biological diversity, with the Great Smokey Mountains alone hosting a greater density of species than any other temperate area on the planet. Increasingly, however, the natural history of this place is tangled with the history of the humans who have both cherished and abused it. In this class, we will examine the environmental history of the southern Appalachians, with special attention to the role of humans, who – through farming, logging, coal mining, conservation, climate change, and so on – have unwittingly gathered the fate of the mountains in their hands. In addition to reading about this history in books, we will take three weekend-long field trips to read it directly in the language of the landscape itself. Note: the field-trips will include strenuous outdoor activities such as camping, hiking, canoeing, and caving; an appropriate level of fitness is required.


1 Course Credit