What is Global Environmental History?
Conversation with Piero Bevilacqua, Guillermo Castro, Ranjan Chakrabarti, Kobus du Pisani, John R. McNeill, Donald Worster
Edited by Gabriella Corona
Global Environment 2 (2008): 228–249
The telematic debate on the theme “Global History and Global Policies” has provided historians from different historiographic traditions and distant countries – Piero Bevilacqua, Guillermo Castro, Ranjan Chakrabarti, Gabriella Corona, Kobus du Pisani, John McNeill, Donald Worster – with an opportunity to compare views on the different interpretive paradigms of global environmental history. A wide range of subjects was covered: the definition of the discipline’s field of research, themes, and chronological scope; the relationship between global and local; the role of the West in history and historiography; the perspective of the dominated; the discipline’s role in policy making; and its relationship with the natural sciences. The discussion has yielded a rich harvest of reflections on global environmental history as a paradigm for the interpretation of the past and a cultural and political instrument for action in the present. Important indications have emerged as regards the research paths a global environmental historian can follow to contribute to this field of studies.
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