The Environment and Science: Social Impact and Interaction explores the history of how science investigates nature and how those studies both shape and are shaped by the social attitudes, philosophies, and politics of their times. It follows the changes in perceptions of the natural world and humankind’s place in it from the European colonization of North America through the Industrial Revolution and westward expansion, to the rise of the consumer economy and the recent hardening of the ideological battle lines over environmental policy.
Coverage includes the emergence of ecology as a science and conservation as a movement, the long history of conflicts between business interests and environmentalists, and the role of scientific studies in debates over atomic and nuclear power, pesticides, toxic emissions, and other human-made sources of environmental degradation.
- Biographical sketches of major contributors to the study of human/environment interaction, including Carolus Linnaeus, Henry David Thoreau, Charles Darwin, Rachel Carson, and Barry Commoner
- Primary source documents from key environmental writers