News & Events


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“New Perspectives in Environmental History”

A Northeast Regional Conference

Saturday, April 22, 2017


Luce Hall

Yale University

New Haven, Connecticut

Yale Environmental History is pleased to announce its upcoming northeast environmental history conference, “New Perspectives in Environmental History.” Please join us in New Haven for a lively day of talks and discussion on Saturday, April 22, 2017.

This one-day conference aims to showcase current doctoral student research in environmental history and to encourage dialogue among graduate students and faculty. The conference will include three moderated panel sessions featuring presentations by graduate students from ten different universities.

The first session, “Transnational Commodities,” examines borders and boundaries in Pacific fisheries, the Lebanese oil complex, and the global exchange of nitrogen. The second panel, “Living Empires,” will consider the exchange of nonhuman animals in the Atlantic slave trade; domesticity and ecological adaptation in colonial Philadelphia; and the colonizing laboratory of Egyptian cotton farms. The third session, “Nature By Design,” will explore its theme around four stories: the protection of a hybrid landscape at Cape Cod National Seashore; the imagining of a Pleistocene museum at the La Brea Tar Pits; the creation of a living wall of trees on the Sino-Nomadic border; and the emergence of an adaptive and opportunistic agricultural landscape in the Ottoman empire.

We will end the conference with faculty-led discussions on various topics, including: using science in environmental history; transnational commodities; animal history; maps and data representation; academic careers and public engagement.

For more details and to register, please visit our site:

​We are grateful to our co-sponsors:

​Department of History, Yale University

MacMillan Center at Yale

Program in the History of Science and Medicine, Yale University

Thursday, April 13

James Scott - Sterling Professor of Political Science, Professor of Anthropology, and Professor of Agrarian Studies Program

Professor Scott will speak on “Population Control: Bondage and War” from his latest book, now in press with Yale: Against the Grain: Animals, Plants, Microbes, Captives and Barbarians and a New Story of Civilization.

4:30 PM, LC102


**Submission deadline extended: December 15, 2016**

Agricultural History Society Graduate Workshop 2017 

“Farmers and Agriculture across Borders” 

The Agricultural History Society invites applications for a one-day graduate student workshop to be held Wednesday, June 7, 2017 in Grand Rapids, MI. The workshop will run immediately in advance of the AHS Annual Meeting (June 8 – 10, 2017), also in Grand Rapids. Applicants for the workshop are strongly encouraged to apply to present their work at the Annual Meeting as well. 

The workshop will be oriented around the theme of “Farmers and Agriculture across Borders.” We are particularly interested in scholarship that examines the intersection of agriculture and agriculturalists with the creation, maintenance, and erosion of geographical borders, whether national, regional, state, or beyond. Scholars who examine movement, exchanges, dialogues, and border-crossings are especially invited to apply, as are those who employ global, comparative, or transnational approaches. Research projects pertaining to any periods and geographic regions are eligible, and graduate students working in history or affiliated disciplines with substantial historical components are welcomed. 

All accepted papers will be pre-circulated, assigned a respondent from among a group of senior scholars, and given in-depth constructive feedback during individual sessions during the workshop. Participants appearing on the conference program of the AHS Annual Meeting will also be eligible for a $500 stipend to help defer the cost of travel and accommodations. A panel of senior scholars will also award a $500 prize to the workshop’s outstanding paper, sponsored by Yale University Press and Yale University’s Agrarian Studies program. 

To apply, please submit a 200-word paper abstract and a one-page CV to Prof. Tore Olsson, at, by December 15, 2016. Questions may be directed to the same email address. 

Applicants are strongly encouraged to apply concurrently to the AHS Annual Meeting program to ensure access to the stipend. Information about the Annual Meeting and the Agricultural History Society can be found at


Saturday, April 22, 2017

A Northeast Regional Conference

Luce Hall, Yale University

New Haven, Connecticut

** Paper Abstract Submission Deadline: December 14, 2016 **

 OVERVIEW: Yale Environmental History invites paper proposals from graduate students at northeastern universities for a one-day conference on environmental history.  Paper proposals from any region or time period are welcome. The conference seeks to showcase new projects in environmental history and to encourage vigorous dialogue among graduate students and faculty.

We invite papers that address environmental history in its broadest sense, whether dealing with political economy, society and culture, intellectual debates, science and technology, microorganisms and disease, or policy and planning.  Conference organizers are particularly eager to include comparative and non-U.S. perspectives on environmental history.

The conference will consist of three moderated panel sessions featuring graduate student papers. A faculty panel will conclude the day. Presentations will be based on papers circulated in advance to panel commentators and conference attendees.

The conference format is based on successful northeast regional conferences held at Yale in recent years. 

For more information on past conferences, visit

ABSTRACT SUBMISSION: Abstract submissions should be in the form of a SINGLE document in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF format, and must include the following:

(1) your name, institutional affiliation, and contact information;

(2) a 300-word abstract;

(3) a one-page C.V.

Submissions must be emailed to by December 14, 2014. Please include your name and paper title in the filename of your submission.

Please do not submit panel proposals– individual papers will be grouped into panels by the conference organizers.

Accepted presenters will be notified by December 21, 2016, and asked to submit their paper for circulation to attendees and commentators by March 31, 2017.

** Graduate students enrolled in doctoral programs in New England, New York, New Jersey, and eastern Pennsylvania are particularly encouraged to submit proposals.  Graduate students from outside this region are welcome to submit proposals; preference may be given to northeastern institutions.**

Please contact with any questions.

For more information, visit

The Agrarian Studies Program is pleased to partner with Yale Environmental History to host a joint social for all affiliated and interested faculty and students. The event will take place September 28, 2016 at 5:30pm in the second floor common room of Luce Hall. Hope to see you there! Event poster can be found here

 The Fourth Annual Yale Food Systems Symposium will take place on September 30, 2016. For registration and more information, please visit the website.

Yale will host an international history conference on the role of expertise during the Cold War in Latin America. The conference, “Traveling Technocrats: Experts and Expertise during Latin America’s Long Cold War,” will convene on October 14 and 15, 2016 in the Luce Hall Auditorium. Papers include topics such as rural development, agricultural economics, forestry, national parks, field stations, cattle and veterinarian science, and many others of interest to the Agrarian Studies community. More details can be found here


The International Labour Organization, with Agrarian Studies Affiliate alum Rishabh Dhir, has prepared a video in honor of the International Day for the World’s Indigenous People. Check out the videos through the YouTube link or Facebook link

Spring Series Colloquia

Agrarian Studies is delighted to announce the lineup for our annual “Spring Series” colloquia. This is an opportunity for advanced Ph.D. students and postdocs to share their work with the Agrarian Studies community in a relaxed format similar to our Friday meetings. We will provide pizza and beverages for two gatherings:

Thursday, April 21

Keri Lambert - Ph.D Candidate, History
Tapping Ghanaians: Kwame Nkrumah’s Rubber Scheme, 1957-66

Faizah Zakaria - Ph.D Candidate, History
Landscapes and Conversions during the Padri Wars in Sumatra, 1803-1840 

Thursday, May 5
5 to 7 pm, 230 Prospect Street

Elliot Prasse-Freeman - Ph.D Candidate, Anthropology
Sedentarized in Motion: Socio-Political Consequences of Dispossession, Displacement, Deterritorialization and Devalorization of Peasants and Poor People in Contemporary Myanmar

Daniel Tubb - Visiting Post-Doctoral Fellow, Anthropology
Shift Work: Small-scale Gold Mining in Chocó, Colombia

Friday, May 6
12 to 2 pm at 230, Prospect Street

Kjell Ericson - Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow, History
The Cage and The Chain: Materializing a Boom in Postwar Japan’s Pearl Country

Mark Baker - PhD Candidate, History
Spaces of Starvation: State and the City in the Henan Famine, 1942-43


Fall 2015 Colloquium Series

“Hinterlands, Frontiers, Cities, and States: Transactions and Identities”

Meetings are Fridays, 11am - 1pm Room 203, Luce Hall, 34 Hillhouse Avenue.

The core of the Agrarian Studies Program’s activities is a weekly colloquium organized around an annual theme. Invited specialists send papers in advance that are the focus of an organized discussion by the faculty and graduate students associated with the colloquium.

View schedule and download papers here.

Download complete Fall 2015 Colloquium schedule here.

Pig Out: Hogs and Humans in Global and Historical Context

An International Conference at Yale University
October 16-18, 2015

The Yale Program in Agrarian Studies is thrilled to announce an international conference, scheduled for October, 2015, which will will examine the role of pigs in human society in comparative cultural and historical perspective. Presenters will be drawn from around the world and across academic disciplines, including the natural, agricultural, and environmental sciences; the humanities; and journalists, activists, and public intellectuals.

Visit conference website.

Download conference program.

more …

Spring Series Colloquia, April 29 and May 7, 2015

Agrarian Studies is delighted to announce the lineup for our annual “Spring Series” colloquia. This is an opportunity for advanced Ph.D. students and postdocs to share their work with the Agrarian Studies community in a relaxed format similar to our Friday meetings. We will provide pizza and beverages for two gatherings:

Wednesday, April 29, 5:00-8:30 (230 Prospect, Seminar Room)
Aniket Aga (Ph.D. Candidate, Anthropology),Merchants of Knowledge: Retailers, Private Sector Extension Agents, and Vegetable Cultivation in Western India • Alba Diaz (Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow, Contemporary History), “When milk began to be worth”: Economic, Social and Cultural Changes in Rural Galiza, 1959-1986 • Alder Keleman (Ph.D. Candidate, Forestry and Environmental Studies), The Bitter Taste of the Anthropocene: Cooking Native and Traditional Crops in the Bolivian Andes

Thursday, May 7, 5:00-8:30 (Luce Hall, Room 203)
Ariel Ron (Postdoctoral Fellow, American History), The ‘Home Market’: Structural Change and Developmental Ideology in the Rural Northeast, 1815-1860 • Yu Luo (Ph.D. Candidate, Anthropology), Drifting with the Current?: An In-Between Ethnicity at China’s Southwestern Borderland • Amy Zhang (Ph.D. Candidate, Anthropology), Spectacular Technology, Invisible Harms: Touring Guangzhou’s Waste Facilities

Lewistown men share their agrarian expertise at a Yale University colloquium

PEORIA — An academic colloquium at Yale University is not someplace where farmers tend to hang out. Typically, a colloquium is a place where graduate students and professors attend presentations by visiting professors to discuss ongoing studies and theories.

However, in mid-September, two Lewistown farmers found themselves speaking in front of a crowd of East Coast intellectuals in New Haven, Conn.

Read more in the in the Peoria Journal Star.

JPSJournal of Peasant Studies
40th Anniversary special issues (2014)

To celebrate its 40th anniversary, The Journal of Peasant Studies will be publishing two special issues on “Global Agrarian Transformations.” For free access to the first volume of this collection, click here.


Conference on Food Sovereignty held at Yale in September 2013

The Program in Agrarian Studies and the Journal of Peasant Studies are sponsored a conference titled “Food Sovereignty: A Critical Dialogue” at Yale on September 14–15, 2013. The conference brought together leading scholars and political activists who are advocates of and sympathetic to the idea of food sovereignty, as well as those who are skeptical of the concept, to foster a critical and productive dialogue on the issue. The purpose of the meeting was to examine what food sovereignty might mean, how it might be variously construed, and what policies (e.g. of land use, commodity policy, and food subsidies) it implies.

Agrarian Studies Archives

Visitors can always find schedules and other information about Agrarian Studies programs and events from past years in the Archives. Included are Colloquium schedules, short biographies of program fellows, course syllabi, and special events.