Edmund P. Russell
- HIS 302; Fall ’18 Hours: on leave
Professor of History
B.A., Stanford University; Ph.D., University of Michigan
Environmental history, history of technology, US history, 19th-20th century history, biology
The question that fascinates Professor Russell is how people and the rest of nature have shaped each other. This question places him squarely in the fields of environmental history and history of technology. Other fields his work has intersected include American history, British history, history of science, law, ecology, evolutionary biology, and neuroscience.
Russell’s first major research project focused on the environmental history of warfare. He studied this topic through a case study, the relationship between chemical warfare and pest control. This project led to a book, War and Nature. With Richard Tucker, he edited Natural Enemy, Natural Ally.
Russell’s second major project focused on coevolution of human and non-human populations. Russell published two books on this topic (Evolutionary History and Greyhound Nation). His third and current major project focuses on telegraphy as a case study of ways in which economics, technology, and environments have shaped each other.
Russell teaches undergraduate and graduate courses on American, environmental, and technological history. His graduate students have worked on a range of topics and gone on to jobs in higher education (Ohio State University, University of Maryland, Northern Arizona University, Christopher Newport University) and the U. S. Department of State.
Russell is vice president/president-elect of the American Society for Environmental History and is a former vice president of the American Historical Association. Russell’s research won the Edelstein Prize, the Rachel Carson Prize, the Leopold-Hidy Prize, and the Forum for the History of Science in America Prize. His teaching has garnered three prizes.