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Thomas Paradis

Professor - History History and Anthropology - LAS
Thomas Paradis

Office Hours

Monday
  • from 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM
Tuesday
  • from 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM

Location

JH-184B

tparadis@butler.edu
317-940-8972

Biography

Born and raised in northern Connecticut, Thomas (Tom) Paradis obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Geography at the Pennsylvania State University (1992), and his Masters (1994) and Ph.D. (1997) degrees in Geography: Urban & Rural Development from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. He continued moving west to Flagstaff, Arizona in 1997 as faculty at Northern Arizona University (NAU), where he was recognized in 2011 and 2014 as a President's Distinguished Teaching Fellow. He further served as the Chair of the Department of Geography, Planning & Recreation and as the university's Director of Academic Assessment. As a professor of geography and community planning here at Butler, he is also an affiliate faculty member in Butler's Science, Technology & Environmental Studies (STES) program. Having originally majored in meteorology at Penn State, he ended up teaching weather and climate at the U. of Illinois and later at NAU. He has thus recently developed a new course at Butler for the Natural Worlds block of the Core Curriculum called Weather, Climate & Society (NW 265). Beyond the fun of academics, Tom enjoys traveling, photography, railroad history and modeling, playing basketball, and was once an avid trumpet player in high school and the Penn State Blue Band (Go State!). 

Teaching and Scholarship

Tom's areas of teaching and research encompass the topics of urban and cultural geography, downtown redevelopment, historic preservation, urban design, heritage tourism, Italy, the American Southwest, and the scholarship of teaching and learning. Having led several study-abroad programs in Viterbo and Siena, Italy to explore livable cities and walkable design, Tom is the author of several books, including Living the Palio: A Story of Community and Public Life in Siena, Italy (3rd edition 2020), and the Illustrated Encyclopedia of American Landmarks (2012), among earlier works. His recent follow-up book is Unbridled Spirit: The Untold Story of the 2018 Extraordinary Palio in Siena, Italy (Feb. 2020). He is now turning his sights to Singapore as he investigates the history of tourism development and tourist spaces there. 

Happy Hunger Games!

He also offers a creative First-Year Seminar (FYS) course focused on Unpacking the Hunger Games, an interdisciplinary approach to understanding our world through Suzanne Collins' dystopian series. His latest book (fall, 2021) is A Place Called District 12: Appalachian Geography and Music in the Hunger Games (McFarland Press). 

Current and Upcoming Butler Courses

  • FYS 101: Unpacking the Hunger Games, Part 1 (every fall)
  • NW 265-ENV: Weather, Climate & Society (every fall, summer 2022)
  • ENV 315 (STES Program): Designing for Livable Cities (fall 2021)
  • FYS 102: Unpacking the Hunger Games, Part 2 (every spring)
  • HST 305 (Topics Course): American Architecture and Preservation (spring 2022)
  • HST 347: U.S. Urban History (spring 2022)
  • HST 346: American Historical Geography (spring 2023)