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Peter Coates specializes in nineteenth and twentieth-century American (U.S.) history, especially environmental history (the study of human relations with the rest of the natural world over time). His interest in environmental history is not confined to the United States.
He has written books on a variety of subjects – including an assessment of attitudes to nature in the western world since ancient time (Nature, 1998) and a 'bio-biography' of the King of Fish (Salmon, 2006) - contributed an essay on wolf eradication in the United States to The Massacre in History (1999) and an essay on nature and environment to A New Introduction to American Studies (2006). He has published articles in journals such as Alaska History, Environmental History, Environment and History, Western Historical Quarterly, The Public Historian, Landscape Research, California History and Journal of American Studies, as well as book reviews in the Times Literary Supplement.
His next book is A Story of Six Rivers: History, Culture and Ecology. He has served as the UK and Ireland representative for the European Society for Environmental History and was a member of the executive committee of the American Society for Environmental History (2007-10). He also belonged to the editorial collective for the journal Environment and History for 12 years. Current research interests focus on American fauna in Britain. He was Principal Investigator for a three-year research project ('Militarized Landscapes in the Twentieth Century: Britain, France and the United States’) (2007-10) funded by the AHRC’s Landscape and Environment Programme. He was also Principal Investigator for the AHRC Research Network 'Local Places, Global Processes: Histories of Environmental Change' (2010-11) and in 2012 is Principal Investigator for the AHRC project 'The Places that Speak to Us and the Publics We Talk With: Shaping Environmental Histories', which involves collaborations with bodies such as the Quantock Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty management team, Forestry Commission, Royal Geographical Society with Institute of British Geographers, Northumbrian Water and The National Trust.
He has supervised a range of MA and PhD dissertations on various aspects of environmental history (topics include wolves in North American national parks, nuclear power in California, atomic testing in the South Pacific, heritage trees, exotic creatures in Victorian Britain, the environmental impacts and dimensions of war in France and the 'geening' of the Ministry of Defence since 1945). Current PhD students (funded by the AHRC's Collaborative Doctoral Awards Scheme), are working on Bristol Zoo and the S.S. Great Britain. He welcomes research proposals in any aspect of environmental history. Do feel free to make contact by e-mail to discuss research proposals (email@example.com).
Full list of Professor Coates' publications since 1991 as held in the University's IRIS publications database.
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