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Kimberly Smith

Professor of Environmental Studies, Political Science

Education & Professional History

University of Michigan, AB; University of California (Berkeley), JD; University of Michigan, PhD

Professor Smith brings to the Carleton College Environmental Studies program a background in political theory, American political institutions and policy, and law.  She currently teaches courses in environmental ethics, environmental justice, environmental law and policy, and constitutional law. Her first book, The Dominion of Voice: Riot, Reason and Romance in Antebellum Politics (University Press of Kansas, 1999) was awarded the 2001 Merle Curti Intellectual History Award by the Organization of American Historians.  African American Environmental Thought: Foundations, published by University Press of Kansas in Spring 2007, and named “Outstanding Academic Title” by Choice Magazine in 2008.  Her 2019 book,  The Conservation Constitution: The Conservation Movement and Constitutional Change, 1870-1930 (University Press of Kansas) won the 2020 C.A. Weyerhauser Book Award from the Forest History Society. 

Her other titles include Wendell Berry and the Agrarian Tradition: A Common Grace (University Press of Kansas, 2003), Governing Animals: Animal Welfare and the Liberal State (Oxford University Press, 2012), and Exploring Environmental Ethics (Springer, 2018).  She has published articles in the Journal of Political Philosophy, Women’s Studies, Environmental Values, Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics and Environmental Ethics, and the Journal of Human and Ecological Risk Assessment. Professor Smith is a founding member and past president of the Association for Environmental Studies and Sciences.


At Carleton since 1999.

Highlights & Recent Activity

Recent scholarly activities include the publication by University Press of Kansas of The Conservation Constitution: The Conservation Movement and Constitutional Change, 1870-1930, exploring the influence of the Progressive-Era conservation movement on constitutional doctrine. In 2020, Professor Smith was awarded the Freudenburg Lifetime Achievement Award from the Association for Environmental Studies and Sciences.

Organizations & Scholarly Affiliations

Association for Environmental Studies and Sciences; Greater Northfield Sustainability Collaborative

Current Courses

  • Fall 2021
    ENTS 215: Environmental Ethics
  •  
    POSC 272: Constitutional Law II
  • Winter 2022
    ENTS 310: Topics in Environmental Law and Policy
  •  
    POSC 212: Environmental Justice
  • Spring 2022
    ENTS 110: Environment and Society
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