Kranzberg Lecture by James Williams

Humans, Technology, and Nature: A Recipe for Crises?

Monday, 13th July 2020 [exact time and location will be announced later]


James Williams received a doctorate in Public History and the history of technology from U.C. Santa Barbara in 1984.  He taught at two community colleges in California from 1971 to 2008 and at Stetson University (Florida) from 2014-2015. He was executive director of the California History Center & Foundation from 1978 to 2002 and worked during these years as a public historian in cultural resources management, historic preservation, and litigation support.

A long-time member of ICOHTEC, he served on the board in the 1990s, as vice president from 2001-2008, as president from 2008-2011, and as editor of ICON from 2011-2015.  He was co-founder and co-chair of Envirotech from 2000-2004, served as Treasurer of the Society for the History of Technology from 1992-2000, on the Board of Directors of the National Council on Public History from 1988-1991, and as president and later executive secretary of the California Council for the Promotion of History from 1982 to 1994.

Dr. Williams’s primary field of interest is the historical relationship between people, technology, and the environment.  He published Energy and the Making of Modern California (1997) as well as numerous articles.  His “Understanding the Place of Humans in Nature” in Illusory Boundary: Environment and Technology in History (2010) has been widely cited and is particularly relevant to the theme of this year’s ICOHTEC symposium.


[The abstract will be added soon]