Methods and Imaginaries – Creating Environmental Histories
Hosted by Amanda Wells, one of our Network’s postgraduate representatives, join three scholars – Heather Goodall, Joanne Yao, and Rebecca Hamilton – and hear their thoughts on the archives, artefacts, numbers, and words they use to tell environmental histories.
Join the AANZEHN for a virtual seminar on Tuesday 18 April 2023 at Midday (AEST). Register at Eventbrite.
How do environmental historians research and interpret environmental histories? What methods and methodologies do we deploy, and how are they different or the same as those used by other historians? In common with many fields of history and the humanities more generally, environmental historians can be reticent in describing the methods that they use to find their evidence, to interpret that evidence, and to describe material and imagined worlds of the past. Imaginaries are a useful concept through which scholars can describe sets of values, beliefs, collectives, landscapes and relationships that emerge, often unspoken, from sources. Our panel of speakers have been asked to discuss how the methods that they use to research and interpret inform the imaginaries that they summon in their histories. By exploring the ways in which environmental historians deploy their methods and methodologies, we can gain a deeper understanding of the imaginaries that inform and spring from their work. This can help us to identify and challenge the assumptions that underpin environmental histories and to develop more nuanced and critical approaches to the study of the environment.