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Tara Rider


Ph.D., 2014 Stony Brook University rider

Maritime and Environmental History


Research Interests

My research interests focus around how maritime environments have shaped societies around the world, with a emphasis on the Atlantic world.  I am interested in exploring how historical decisions have shaped not only the physical environment, but also society’s evolving views of nature.  Human responses to the different types of environmental conditions and physical landscapes have shaped social thoughts and attitudes.  My current research has been centered on the geo-politics of sixteenth century Ireland and includes a study in how gender becomes symbolic of the turmoil involved in colonization.  The linkage of gender and race with landscape is about questions of power, culture, and identity.

As part of the Semester by the Sea program at Stony Brook Southampton, I regularly teach Maritime Traditions of New England and the Coastal Cultures field class. Other courses I teach also include American Environmental History, Global Environmental History, and Technical Communication.

Furthermore, as the director of Stony Brook University’s international academic programs to both Ireland and England, I seek to introduce students to new cultures, ideas, and histories through an interactive experience.  By encouraging students to explore the world, I hope to initiate a conversation about how our environment shapes who we are.  I invite students to come to Ireland to study its culture and history during the winter intersessions as we visit cliffs and castles, cathedrals and tombs, fortresses and museums, mountains and more.  Students are also invited to join me on the program to University of Hertfordshire, England in the summer where classes will study maritime history and the influence of maritime technology on the world as well as exploring London and Cambridge.

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