Problematika environmentálnych dejín na Slovensku

The Issue of Environmental History in Slovakia

Environmental history started to be formed as an autonomous discipline in the 1960s in the United States of America. Prof. Donald Worster is considered to be its founder. The discipline was formed under high pressure from a massive developing environmental movement that had emerged as a response to the deteriorating global environment. A negative mood was predominantly stirred up by the unrestrained development of industry, ruthless towards the landscape, and by the formation of a new "consumer" society. These sceptical attitudes accompanied the emerging discipline throughout its first years after formation.
Nowadays, the environmental history of the world has been developing as one of the key methodological and conceptual innovations of history, with a prerequisite to head towards a new concept for the interpretation of human history. With regard to understanding environmental history, it is necessary to emphasise that this history is no longer a history of man damaging the environment (landscape), but, on the contrary, its role is to study the dynamics of the relationship between man and the environment throughout the historical development, in the context of the present and future, while searching in the past for moral guidance for the future.
The way environmental history is understood internationally, is just beginning to develop here. Not only do we miss the conceptualisation of individual terms, but also of the entire discipline; we lack experts who would pay deeper and more systematic attention to the research. We also lack a specialised journal or workplace where such research in the field of environmental history could be carried out.