Steppe by Steppe: From America's Great Plains to Russia's Grasslands (and Back Again!) with David Moon

May 31st, 2021 · 34 mins 13 secs

About this Episode

On this episode, Professor David Moon from the UK joins Tom and Lera to talk about the fascinating personal journey which led to the release of his latest book, The American Steppes: Unexpected Russian Roots of Great Plains Agriculture. He clearly delineates how the kernels of his transnational research all began during his tenure at The University of Texas at Austin, demonstrating that in fact "What Starts Here Changes the World." We hope you enjoy!


David Moon is an Emeritus Professor at the University of York and also an Honorary Professor at the University College London at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies. He is a specialist on Russian, Eurasian, and transnational environmental history. His latest book, The American Steppes: The Unexpected Russian Roots of Great Plains Agriculture, 1870s-1930s (2020), explores transfers of people, plants (crops and weeds), sciences and techniques from the Eurasian steppes to the Great Plains of the USA. It follows up on his previous monograph, The Plough that Broke the Steppes: Agriculture and Environment on Russia’s Grasslands, 1700-1914 (2013), which analyzes how Russians and other settlers came to understand the steppe environment and their relationship with it. It was awarded the Alexander Nove Prize.

He is co-editor, with Nicholas Breyfogle and Alexandra Bekasova, of a volume of essays based on field trips to various locations in Russia: Place and Nature: Essays in Russian Environmental History (White Horse Press, 2021). This collection builds on the concept of a similar volume he co-edited with Peter Coates and Paul Warde entitled Local Places, Global Processes: Histories of Environmental Change in Britain and Beyond (Windgather Press, 2016). He has published articles in journals in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. And his research has been supported by the Leverhulme Trust, the AHRC, the British Academy, and other funders.

Host/Co-Producer: Tom Rehnquist (Connect: Twitter @RehnquistTom)
Host/Co-Producer: Lera Toropin
Co-Producer: Matthew Orr (Connect: Twitter @More_Orr)
Associate Producer: Cullan Bendig
Assistant Producer: Samantha Farmer
Assistant Producer: Katherine Birch
Assistant Producer: Zach Johnson
Assistant Producer/Administrator: Kathryn Yegorov-Crate
Recording, Editing, and Sound Design: Michelle Daniel, Charlie Harper

Music Producer: Charlie Harper (Connect: Instagram: @charlieharpermusic) (Main Theme by Charlie Harper and additional background music by Charlie Harper, Ketsa, Scott Holmes, and Antony Raijekov )

Executive Producer & Creator: Michelle Daniel (Connect: Instagram: @michelledaniel86)

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