WEALTH OF NATURE

ENVIRONMENTAL HISTORY AND THE ECOLOGIAL IMAGINATION

Sixteen thoughtful essays that examine the present and future implications of America's past relationship to the land—and that draw, as Worster (American History/University of Kansas; Rivers of Empire, 1986, etc.) puts it, a ``picture of the human past that is radically unlike anything you will find in the standard undergraduate history textbooks.'' In these pieces (some of which appeared originally in academic journals and books), Worster speaks with awe of the ``search to discover a less reductive, less ecologically and spiritually nihilistic, less grasping kind of materialism.'' In this spirit, reminiscent of Thoreau and Joseph Wood Krutch (one of the author's early inspirations), Worster sounds deeply skeptical over the prospect that a market economy can ever be compatible with responsible stewardship of this country's natural resources: His own preference is for an environmentalism ``that talks about ethics and aesthetics rather than about resources and economics.'' Not surprisingly, given these views, Worster throws a wet rag over the concept of ``sustained development''; hails an American conservation revolution that views the land as an interdependent ecosystem; and calls for an end to all federal subsidies of western irrigation projects. As an alternative to federal and state management of resources, he speaks eloquently about individual responsibility for the environment. And when he's not warning about our current encroachments on nature, Worster can be especially illuminating about how the environment has affected our past- -pointing, for example, to the Midwest's overemphasis on wheat- growing as a cause of the Dust Bowl crisis of the 1930's; discussing the 1935 Soil Erosion Act, the first comprehensive legislation to preserve the lifeblood of American agriculture; and carefully tracing the evangelical fervor of America's greatest environmentalists to the dissident and missionary spirit of Protestantism. Probably too pessimistic on reconciling conservation with a market economy, but informed and lucid about how we've lost ground in the fight to save our natural resources.

Pub Date: May 1, 1993

ISBN: 0-19-507624-9

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1993

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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IN MY PLACE

From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

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