Writings, maps, and visualizations about the environment, nature, culture, and history.

Featured Pages

Unsettling Wilderness

Wilderness has long been a powerful and fraught concept with which to understand North American nature. In their 2013 album, The Handsome Family attempt to reimagine the concept as something more like a force than a place. ...read more

Planet Rock

From the redwood forests to Standing Rock, in the ghetto and on the moon, our environments have shaped our music. We may live on a hungry planet, even a poison planet, but we also live on planet rock. ...read more

The Sound of Extinction without the Sound of Humans?

There is a profound sense of loss that pervades Krause's work. Those who know only the present soundscape cannot know the experience of living through the transformation. ...read more

Indigenous Artivism

Visual images that tell stories from indigenous perspectives can offer more holistic understandings of the world and ask us to reconsider how we comprehend historical contexts and power structures, and to consider diverse forms of identity and expression. ...read more

The Mysis Crisis

From 1949 to the 1980s, fisheries managers introduced tiny mysis shrimp into hundreds of freshwater lakes in North America, hoping to bolster sport fisheries. Instead, they often destroyed them. ...see the timeline and map

Gotta Fight the Bossess...and Pollution

Lisi's song gives the lie to idea that working-class people and workers' unions were indifferent or antagonistic to concerns about the environment. Simply put, one of the first songs about pollution was written by and for factory workers. ...read more

Whitey on the Moon

“We have a poem here,” a twenty-year-old Gil Scott-Heron begins in a soft voice that undersells the incendiary political commentary he is about to provide. “It’s called ‘Whitey on the Moon.’ And, uh, it was inspired, it was inspired by some whiteys on the moon.” ...read more

Prophet of the Eco-Apocalypse?

No popular avatar better captured the tension between humanity as savior and humanity as destroyer than Charlton Heston, whose films pioneered the genre of post-apocalyptic eco-catastrophe. ...read more

A Year Without Summer

Courtney Blazon explores, in surreal detail, the effects of the eruption of Mount Tambora on the island of Sumbawa in 1815, capturing disease, death, folklore, climate change and even the birth of Frankenstein. ...read more


Youngstown exposes a fundamental feature of industrial life for many blue-collar American workers in the twentieth century -- the degradation of the environment was synonymous with prosperity and financial security. ...read more

Black Survival: Mainstream Environmentalism's Missed Opportunities

The 1970 play "Black Survival" reveals that even at the moment of the first Earth Day, many African Americans considered environmentalism to be a white movement, but not necessarily a white issue. ...read more

Blackened and Nuclear Winter

One could argue that "Blackened" is a planet-in-peril kind of song, reminiscent of the Doors' 1967 "When the Music's Over." But not quite. Metallica does not want to hear the scream of the butterfly. ...read more