Environmental Change and Migration in Historical Perspective
Current debates about “climate refugees” have triggered interest in the larger connections between environmental change and migration. But what can history contribute to this new field of research? Focusing on historical case studies of environmental migration in general and displacement after natural disasters in particular, Uwe Lübken’s talk will highlight the potential of historical research for this debate.
This lecture is part of the Gerda Henkel Lecture Series, organized by GHI West, the Pacific Regional Office of the Germany Historical Institute, Washington DC, in cooperation with the Gerda Henkel Foundation. The program brings German historians to the West Coast where they present their hresearch at up to four different universities with the goal to facilitate the general dialogue between German historians and their colleagues in the U.S. and Canadian west.
Uwe Lübken is professor of American history at Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Munich. He has held teaching and research positions at the universities of Cologne, Munich, Münster and at the German Historical Institute in Washington, DC. His publications include a prize-winning book on the U.S. perception of the National Socialist threat to Latin America and several edited volumes, special issues, and articles on (American) transnational history and the history of natural hazards and catastrophes. He has published a history of flooding of the Ohio River (2014) and co-edited volumes on urban fires (University of Wisconsin Press, 2012), the management of natural resources (Berghahn Books, 2014) and city-river relations (Pittsburgh University Press, 2016). His current work explores the intersections of mobilities and the environment.
The Gerda Henkel Foundation was established in June 1976 by Lisa Maskell in memory of her mother Gerda Henkel as a private, non-profit grant making organization. The Foundation has its headquarters in Düsseldorf. The sole object of the Foundation is to promote science at universities and research institutes, primarily by supporting specific projects in the field of the humanities that have a specialist scope and are limited in time. A special concern of the Foundation is the advancement of postgraduates.
The German Historical Institute Washington DC (GHI) established GHI West in 2017 as its Pacific Regional Office at UC Berkeley. The GHI is an internationally recognized center for advanced study. It serves as a transatlantic bridge connecting American and European scholars and seeks to make their research accessible to decision-makers in the public and private sectors as well as to a general audience. While the Institute is particularly dedicated to fostering the study of German history in North America and of American history in Germany, its research and scholarly activities range beyond German and American history to encompass comparative, international, and global history. The research at GHI West focusses on history of knowledge and migration as well as transcoceanic history.