You analyze the intersections of pressing ecological problems with issues of gender, sexuality, race, and class, and engage with theories such as critical theory, environmental ethics, queer ecology, sustainable development, new materialism, and more. In our core courses, we bring these humanities approaches into contact with perspectives from the Natural and Social Sciences, and engage with the views of artists and activists, to shape a transdisciplinary approach.
The RMA specialization aims to train a generation of students aware of the value of the humanities in addressing pressing environmental concerns. You acquire a deeper understanding of the complexity of terms driving current policy and practice, such as 'sustainability' or the opposition between 'nature' and 'culture.' In combining ‘traditional’ humanities skills (such as close reading, archival research, and hermeneutic reasoning) from various disciplines and backgrounds and exploring new forms of situated and collaborative knowledge production, you train to be an environmental humanities scholar who can think across disciplinary borders and beyond the boundaries of the campus.
The Environmental Humanities track is the first of its kind in The Netherlands, and draws on the wealth of research experience gathered in the Environmental Humanities Center (CLUE+), founded at VU Amsterdam in 2016. As a research master student, you will be able to participate in the Center's activities, and to be engaged with cutting-edge research in the Environmental Humanities at our Faculty.