of faculty at the University of Oklahoma dedicated to exploring the intellectual and ethical challenges raised by the Anthropocene. Through this blog we seek to foster and expand our conversation: by presenting our own reflections on the topic, and also by presenting readings from our various disciplines that we think contribute to the broad intellectual outlook the Anthropocene demands. Though we are based at OU, we list that affiliation solely for purposes of identification; posts here do not reflect the policies or positions of the institution, but are expressions of our own individual viewpoints.
Please click on an author’s name to see his or her posts–and for more on our goals and the organization of this site, please click the “About our blog” tab. To contact an author please use the form on the Copyright page.
We also present occasional posts by colleagues from outside of OU; see the “Guest Contributors” page for their bio’s. And some former colleagues have moved on to other universities; their bios are on the “Our Alumni” page.
is an art historian and assistant professor in the School of Visual Arts at the University of Oklahoma. He researches the history of modern and contemporary art as well as the historiography and methodology of art history with a focus on relations of theory and practice in art and art history..
THOMAS J. BURNS
is Professor of Sociology at the University of Oklahoma, and is active in the Religious Studies and Environmental Studies programs and the Center for Social Justice there. His research focuses on the outcomes, evolution and emergence of social institutions from a comparative and historical perspective, particularly as they pertain to issues of well-being and sustainability.
is an associate professor in the department of Geography and Environmental Sustainability, and current chair, at the University of Oklahoma. She has a background in remote sensing research with a strong understanding of the effect of institutional changes on the land surface, in particular in dryland regions, and is an author on more than 50 manuscripts and a PI or Co-PI on several large NASA and NSF funded projects.
is Associate Professor and Graduate Liaison in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Oklahoma. He is interested in Decision Theory (both descriptive and normative) and Philosophy of Social Science (particularly in Philosophy of Economics).
is an Assistant Professor of Art, Technology & Culture at the University of Oklahoma’s School of Visual Arts. Her artistic practice is multi-disciplinary, including olfactory artworks. Research and creative activity focus on our sense of smell as a language to access ideas and tell stories about expectations of place, the American landscape and our cultural connections to the land.
is the Douglas and Hilda Bourne Chair of Chemical Engineering in OU’s School of Chemical, Biological and Materials Engineering and currently is the Director of the School. He served on the Executive Board of the Society of Plastics Engineers from 2008-2012 and 2017-present and served as Secretary of the Society in 2010-2011 and President in 2018-2019.
, a historian of the classical world, is Senior Vice President and Provost, as well as Professor of Classics and Letters at the University of Oklahoma. His most recent book, The Fate of Rome: Climate, Disease, and the End of an Empire
(Princeton, 2017) argues that climate change and pandemic disease were integral to the fall of the Roman Empire.
is an associate professor of sculpture in the OU School of Visual Arts. His creative research focuses on systemic and emergent artworks fabricated through traditional and digital technologies that examine the notion of form, solidity and logic.
is an ecologist specializing on life in the air – aeroecology. He is the director of the Oklahoma Biological Survey
and a Professor of Biology at the University of Oklahoma.
is an assistant professor of regional and city planning in the College of Architecture at the University of Oklahoma. His research focuses on the built environment, food systems, spatial inequality, and access to nutritional opportunity. More on his teaching and research can be found on his website
is an assistant professor in the Department of Geography and Environmental Sustainability at the University of Oklahoma. His research focuses on Conservation Biology, Landscape Ecology, Freshwater Ecosystems, Simulation and Modeling, and Statistics.
is an archaeologist and Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Oklahoma. His research, which focuses on ancient hunter-gatherers, considers the role of landscape alteration in the creation of social histories and identities.
is an assistant professor in the Department of the History of Science and managing editor of Technology and Culture
at the University of Oklahoma. His research centers on the interdisciplinary intersection of urban, environmental, and technological history with currents in sociology and geography. He has written for French Historical Studies
; French Politics
; Culture and Society
; History and Technology
; Technology and Culture
; and Transfers
is a geologist and Professor of Geology in the School of Geology and Geophysics at the University of Oklahoma. Her research focuses primarily on reconstructing aspects of Earth’s climate, especially from “deep-time” (primarily Paleozoic) intervals.
is a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Oklahoma. He focuses on social and political philosophy, and approaches environmental issues from that point of view. His work on the Anthropocene grew out of a longstanding curiosity about the ways human beings interact with and transform the landscape. A summary of his research and teaching interests can be found at his departmental webpage
is an assistant professor in the History of Science Department at the University of Oklahoma. He studies issues in the area of science and religion. He is also the editor of the Isis Bibliography of the History of Science.
K. MEGHAN WIETERS
teaches courses in environmental planning, subdivision planning, history and theory, and planning related issues with public health and active living. She was a practicing planner in Austin, Texas for 10 years working in transit planning, neighborhood planning and non-motorized mode planning.
is Associate Professor of English and affiliated faculty in Environmental Studies at the University of Oklahoma. Since publishing a book in 2015 on the influence of anticommunism on the politics of race in the United States (Red Scare Racism), he has developed a research interest in popular representations of climate change and the rhetoric of debate over the Anthropocene.