Chris Wells specializes in U.S. environmental history with additional interests in
the history of technology, urban history, and environmental justice. His research and
teaching focus on the ways that technology—and especially technological systems—have
reshaped the American environment, mediating and structuring people’s relationships with
the natural world. His book, Car Country: An Environmental History (2012), focuses on the
proliferation of car-dependent landscapes in the United States before 1956. His current
projects include a co-edited volume on Minnesota’s environmental history (with George
Vrtis, Carleton College), a documents reader on environmental justice, and a history of
the idea of “building with nature” in American domestic architecture. EDUCATION: B.A.,
Williams College, 1995; M.A., University of Wisconsin, Madison, 1997; Ph.D., University
of Wisconsin, Madison, 2004. 

Wells has been teaching at Macalester since 2005. 

Peer Reviewed Articles and Essays


The Campus as a Teaching Tool: A Case Study of Macalester College’s EcoHouse (with Suzanne Savanick Hansen), Sustainable Development at Universities: New Horizons (2012)


Using a Class to Conduct a Carbon Inventory: A Case Study with Practical Results at Macalester College (with Suzanne Savanick Hansen and Christine Manning), International Journal of Sustainability in HIgher Education (2009)

Encyclopedia Articles


Automobile (with James J. Fink), Dictionary of American History (2003)


Baby Boom, Encyclopedia of American History (2003)


Environmental Movement, Encyclopedia of American History (2003)


Trucking Industry (with Don H. Berkebile), Dictionary of American History (2003)


Automobile Industry, Oxford Companion to United States History (2001)


Book Reviews