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William Cronon
Biography Writings Teaching Citizenship Resources

William Cronon studies American environmental history and the history of the American West. His research seeks to understand the history of human interactions with the natural world: how we depend on the ecosystems around us to sustain our material lives, how we modify the landscapes in which we live and work, and how our ideas of nature shape our relationships with the world around us.

Links to all of Cronon's AHA presidential writings and columns are collected here, including the text, video, and audio of his presidential address on "Storytelling," Richard White's bio, and Cronon's complete presidential columns on "The Public Practice of History in and for a Digital Age."

In April 2013, Cronon did an hour-long video interview with Harry Kreisler of UC-Berkeley for the "Conversations with History" series. You can view it here.

For Cronon's half-hour radio interview with Paul Robbins on NPR's Science Friday on "Saving Wild Places in the ‘Anthropocene’," see here.

View a brief 3.5-minute video about the final lecture of "American Environmental History" here.


To see the course page for History / Geography / Environmental Studies 460, click here.

Check out the CHE Methods Seminar's cool new web field guide to Forest Hill Cemetery here.

To explore this site's primer on "Learning to Do Historical Research," click here.

For a gallery of images in the above slide show, click here.

For access to the website for the Center for Culture, History, and Environment (CHE), click here.

For CHE's website on the history of energy in the U.S., click here.

Visit the prize-winning Lakeshore Nature Preserve map and website.

For our website on the history of Gaylord Nelson and Earth Day, click here.

"'Kindness' covers all of my political beliefs. No need to spell them out. I believe that if, at the end, according to our abilities, we have done something to make others a little happier, and something to make ourselves a little happier, that is about the best we can do. To make others less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts. We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances. We must try. I didn’t always know this and am happy I lived long enough to find it out."

---Roger Ebert, Life Itself: A Memoir

(For more favorite quotations, click here.)





Follow Cronon on Twitter at @wcronon

Page revision date: 10-May-2015