Imperialism & the Global Environment: Europe and the Tranformation of the Tropical World, 19th-20th centuries [A]Sources

Department of History, School of History and Cultures

College of Arts and Law


Code 23188

Level of study Third/Final year

Credit value 20

Semester 1

Module description

The module is divided into four primary sections. Part One briefly surveys the broad history of the environmental changes caused by European expansion since c. 1500, and the penetration of European power into the tropics from the latter 19th century. Part Two then considers the role of large-scale tropical commodity production in reconfiguring various tropical ecosystems around the world. Part Three focuses on attempts to manage the environmental changes that attended European expansion, both for conserving natural resources and for making production regimes more efficient. Part Four then analyses the post-war decades, which witnessed the high-point of colonial attempts to manage and 'develop' tropical lands as well as growing resistance to such intervention; this section also briefly considers the changes and continuities in resource-use and conservation between the colonial and post-colonial periods.