Welcome to Climate in Arts and History!

Climate in Arts and History is a climate literacy resource developed by an interdisciplinary team at Smith College

This resource aims to promote climate literacy across disciplines by exploring and documenting the many ways in which climate has impacted, and continues to influence life on Earth. To do so, this resource focuses on connecting historical events and works of art, literature and music, among other aspects of human society and culture, to specific climate events in Earth’s history, and explains the science behind the climatic changes. 

As we move into an increasingly uncertain future, understanding the effects of past climate fluctuations is becoming more important for coping with present and future climate changes initiated and accelerated by human activities.

This site is for you if:

  • you want to learn about how climate impacts human life
  • you are an educator interested in incorporating information about climate into your teaching 
  • you are passionate about comprehensive climate literacy beyond the natural sciences 

How to use this site:

  • Each subject area listed at the top of the page has a table of contents with links to individual climate-related topics organized chronologically and/or geographically. Each topic is briefly described, its relation to climate is explored, and links to resources for additional, more detailed information are provided. 
  • Browse the tables of contents by subject area and click on a topic of interest, or search for a topic using the search bar to learn about its relationship to climate. 
  • Send your comments, questions, and suggestions to climate@smith.edu or via this form. Thank you!


Header image:  “The Arena” – a Roman amphitheater from Pula, Croatia, built between 27 BC and 68 CE (from: https://twoupriders.com/beautiful-istrian-town-of-pula/)