Environment, Nature, Society

Module code: GY1412

This module begins with a question that, at first, seems very straightforward but in reality is quite complex: what is nature? 

You'll be considering the ways that nature has been understood throughout history, by looking at ideas about nature in Western society, about nature in the Global South and about nature in indigenous societies. Ultimately, you'll explore some of the world’s pressing environmental issues through the strange and seemingly contradictory concept of 'social-nature'.

Topics covered

  • Conceptions of nature (external, intrinsic, universal, social)
  • Histories of environmental concern
  • Global south environmentalism
  • Postcolonial environmentalism
  • 'Wilderness' as a concept
  • Conservation challenges
  • Land access
  • Economics for an alternative environmental future

Learning

  • 20 hours of lectures
  • 2 hours of practical classes and workshops
  • 2 hours of tutorials
  • 6 hours of fieldwork
  • 120 hours of guided independent study

Assessment

  • Critical review essay (50%)
  • Short answer exam (50%)