Summer 2007

SCIE 641
Earth Resources

Zeilinga de Boer,Jelle

06/25/2007 - 08/03/2007
Monday & Wednesday 01:30 PM - 04:30 PM

Science Tower 405

We will study the occurrences, origins, and usages of Earth's principal mineral and energy resources to understand the political and socio-economic consequences of resource discovery, resource depletion, and the environmental impact of extraction processes. The industrial evolution/revolution of Europe from the Stone Age via the Bronze and Iron Ages to the Coal and Oil Age will be used to provide examples of the role mineral (and energy) resources played in the birth, development, and decline of cultural groups and nations. Most historic periods began with major discoveries and were aided by technological advances. Several ended rather abruptly because of resource depletion and/or insufficient technological capabilities and caused economic disruptions and warfare.

Fieldtrips will be held on Sunday mornings, three to four hours each. Trips will include the Salisbury iron/steel furnaces, Granby copper mine, Portland brownstone quarries, and Westerly granite quarries.

Texts for the course include Craig, et al., Resources of the Earth; Skinner, Earth Resources; and Bates and Jackson, Our Modern Stone Age.

Students will be responsible for several short papers.

Additional fee: $35

A syllabus for this course is available at:
Course Syllabus

Jelle Zeilinga de Boer (B.S., Ph.D. University of Utrecht) is Harold T. Stearns professor of earth and environmental sciences, emeritus, and author, with Donald T. Sanders, of Earthquakes in Human History: The Far-reaching Effects of Seismic Disruptions (Princeton University Press, 2005) and Volcanoes in Human History: The Far-reaching Effects of Major Eruptions (Princeton University Press, 2002). Click here for more information about Jelle de Boer.


Consent of Instructor Required: No

Format: Seminar

Level: GLSP Credits: 3 Enrollment Limit: 18

Texts to purchase for this course:
James Craig, et al., RESOURCES OF THE EARTH (Prentice Hall), 3rd Edition, Hardcover


PLEASE NOTE: Due to the high cost of this text, the instructor recommends that students purchase it used from

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