Erik Altenbernd, PhD

Humanities Faculty
Humanities Faculty

Erik Altenbernd is an environmental and cultural historian with research interests in Los Angeles, California, and greater arid America.

Erik Altenbernd is an environmental and cultural historian with research interests in Los Angeles, California, and greater arid America. Altenbernd’s dissertation, which he recently completed at the University of California, Irvine, examines federal exploration, US territorial expansion, and changes in American perceptions of desert landscapes during the nineteenth century. In addition to this research, he is also at work on a project that examines Los Angeles and its contentious reputation as a desert city. Altenbernd has taught widely on American history and culture, including multiple courses on history and Hollywood and how feature films construct historical narratives, landscapes, and senses of place.