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Marsha Lee Weisiger
University of Oregon (Eugene, OR 97403-5219)
Rivers in the American West and the Idea of Wildness: An Environmental History

The River Runs Wild will explore the environmental history of "hybrid rivers"--dammed streams that are simultaneously natural and artificial--in the American West to understand the multiple meanings of wild-ness from the early nineteenth century to the present. Eight selected rivers in the Northwest and the Southwest will allow me to elucidate the meanings of wildness--ecologically, intellectually, and experientially--over time. The existence of wild nature is an unexamined premise of much environmental history, conservation biology, and ecological restoration, one that warrants closer attention. Even in the most constructed environments, an autonomous "wild nature" asserts itself, while those places we imagine as wild are often less than they seem. During the project period, I will complete the archival and primary-source research, draft two book chapters, and prepare two articles for publication in major journals.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
History, Other; U.S. History; U.S. Regional Studies

Fellowships for University Teachers

Research Programs

$50,400 (approved)
$50,400 (awarded)

Grant period:
7/1/2014 – 6/30/2015