Summary and Info
As the very first book of its kind, An Environmental History of Medieval Europe provides a highly original survey of medieval relations with the natural world. Engaging with the interdisciplinary enterprise of environmental history, it examines the way in which natural forces affected people, how people changed their surroundings, and how they thought about the world around them. Exploring key themes in medieval history - including the decline of Rome, religious doctrine, and the long fourteenth century - Hoffmann draws fresh conclusions about enduring questions regarding agrarian economies, tenurial rights, technology and urbanization. Revealing the significance of the natural world on events previously thought of as purely human, the book explores issues including the treatment of animals, sustainability, epidemic disease and climate change, and by introducing medieval history in the context of social ecology, brings the natural world into historiography as an agent and object of history itself.
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