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Car Country

Author: Christopher W. Wells
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 0295804475
Size: 69.74 MB
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For most people in the United States, going almost anywhere begins with reaching for the car keys. This is true, Christopher Wells argues, because the United States is Car Country�a nation dominated by landscapes that are difficult, inconvenient, and often unsafe to navigate by those who are not sitting behind the wheel of a car. The prevalence of car-dependent landscapes seems perfectly natural to us today, but it is, in fact, a relatively new historical development. In Car Country, Wells rejects the idea that the nation's automotive status quo can be explained as a simple byproduct of an ardent love affair with the automobile. Instead, he takes readers on a tour of the evolving American landscape, charting the ways that transportation policies and land-use practices have combined to reshape nearly every element of the built environment around the easy movement of automobiles. Wells untangles the complicated relationships between automobiles and the environment, allowing readers to see the everyday world in a completely new way. The result is a history that is essential for understanding American transportation and land-use issues today. Watch the book trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48LTKOxxrXQ

Conservation In The Progressive Era

Author: David Stradling
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 0295803800
Size: 62.72 MB
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Conservation was the first nationwide political movement in American history to grapple with environmental problems like waste, pollution, resource exhaustion, and sustainability. At its height, the conservation movement was a critical aspect of the broader reforms undertaken in the Progressive Era (1890-1910), as the rapidly industrializing nation struggled to protect human health, natural beauty, and "national efficiency." This highly effective Progressive Era movement was distinct from earlier conservation efforts and later environmentalist reforms. Conservation in the Progressive Era places conservation in historical context, using the words of participants in and opponents to the movement. Together, the documents collected here reveal the various and sometimes conflicting uses of the term "conservation" and the contested nature of the reforms it described. This collection includes classic texts by such well-known figures as Theodore Roosevelt, Gifford Pinchot, and John Muir, as well as texts from lesser-known but equally important voices that are often overlooked in environmental studies: those of rural communities, women, and the working class. These lively selections provoke unexpected questions and ideas about many of the significant environmental issues facing us today.

Nature S Metropolis Chicago And The Great West

Author: William Cronon
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 0393072452
Size: 11.41 MB
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A Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and Winner of the Bancroft Prize. "No one has written a better book about a city…Nature's Metropolis is elegant testimony to the proposition that economic, urban, environmental, and business history can be as graceful, powerful, and fascinating as a novel." —Kenneth T. Jackson, Boston Globe In this groundbreaking work, William Cronon gives us an environmental perspective on the history of nineteenth-century America. By exploring the ecological and economic changes that made Chicago America's most dynamic city and the Great West its hinterland, Mr. Cronon opens a new window onto our national past. This is the story of city and country becoming ever more tightly bound in a system so powerful that it reshaped the American landscape and transformed American culture. The world that emerged is our own. Winner of the Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize

Dreaming Of Sheep In Navajo Country

Author: Marsha Weisiger
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 0295803193
Size: 32.83 MB
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Dreaming of Sheep in Navajo Country offers a fresh interpretation of the history of Navajo (Din�) pastoralism. The dramatic reduction of livestock on the Navajo Reservation in the 1930s -- when hundreds of thousands of sheep, goats, and horses were killed -- was an ambitious attempt by the federal government to eliminate overgrazing on an arid landscape and to better the lives of the people who lived there. Instead, the policy was a disaster, resulting in the loss of livelihood for Navajos -- especially women, the primary owners and tenders of the animals -- without significant improvement of the grazing lands. Livestock on the reservation increased exponentially after the late 1860s as more and more people and animals, hemmed in on all sides by Anglo and Hispanic ranchers, tried to feed themselves on an increasingly barren landscape. At the beginning of the twentieth century, grazing lands were showing signs of distress. As soil conditions worsened, weeds unpalatable for livestock pushed out nutritious native grasses, until by the 1930s federal officials believed conditions had reached a critical point. Well-intentioned New Dealers made serious errors in anticipating the human and environmental consequences of removing or killing tens of thousands of animals. Environmental historian Marsha Weisiger examines the factors that led to the poor condition of the range and explains how the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Navajos, and climate change contributed to it. Using archival sources and oral accounts, she describes the importance of land and stock animals in Navajo culture. By positioning women at the center of the story, she demonstrates the place they hold as significant actors in Native American and environmental history. Dreaming of Sheep in Navajo Country is a compelling and important story that looks at the people and conditions that contributed to a botched policy whose legacy is still felt by the Navajos and their lands today.

Making Salmon

Author: Joseph E. Taylor III
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 9780295989914
Size: 62.56 MB
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Winner of the George Perkins Marsh Award, American Society for Environmental History

The Lost Wolves Of Japan

Author: Brett L. Walker
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 0295989939
Size: 56.98 MB
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Many Japanese once revered the wolf as Oguchi no Magami, or Large-Mouthed Pure God, but as Japan began its modern transformation wolves lost their otherworldly status and became noxious animals that needed to be killed. By 1905 they had disappeared from the country. In this spirited and absorbing narrative, Brett Walker takes a deep look at the scientific, cultural, and environmental dimensions of wolf extinction in Japan and tracks changing attitudes toward nature through Japan's long history. Grain farmers once worshiped wolves at shrines and left food offerings near their dens, beseeching the elusive canine to protect their crops from the sharp hooves and voracious appetites of wild boars and deer. Talismans and charms adorned with images of wolves protected against fire, disease, and other calamities and brought fertility to agrarian communities and to couples hoping to have children. The Ainu people believed that they were born from the union of a wolflike creature and a goddess. In the eighteenth century, wolves were seen as rabid man-killers in many parts of Japan. Highly ritualized wolf hunts were instigated to cleanse the landscape of what many considered as demons. By the nineteenth century, however, the destruction of wolves had become decidedly unceremonious, as seen on the island of Hokkaido. Through poisoning, hired hunters, and a bounty system, one of the archipelago's largest carnivores was systematically erased. The story of wolf extinction exposes the underside of Japan's modernization. Certain wolf scientists still camp out in Japan to listen for any trace of the elusive canines. The quiet they experience reminds us of the profound silence that awaits all humanity when, as the Japanese priest Kenko taught almost seven centuries ago, we "look on fellow sentient creatures without feeling compassion."

Native Seattle

Author: Coll Thrush
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 029574135X
Size: 67.46 MB
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This updated edition of Native Seattle brings the indigenous story to the present day and puts the movement of recognizing Seattle's Native past into a broader context. Native Seattle focuses on the experiences of local indigenous communities on whose land Seattle grew, accounts of Native migrants to the city and the development of a multi-tribal urban community, as well as the role Native Americans have played in the narrative of Seattle.

The Natural History Of Puget Sound Country

Author: Arthur R. Kruckeberg
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 9780295974774
Size: 64.12 MB
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Winner of the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Award Bounded on the east by the crest of the Cascade Range and on the west by the lofty east flank of the Olympic Mountains, Puget Sound terrain includes every imaginable topograhic variety. This thoughtful and eloquent natural history of the Puget Sound region begins with a discussion of how the ice ages and vulcanism shaped the land and then examines the natural attributes of the region--flora and fauna, climate, special habitats, life histories of key organisms--as they pertain to the functioning ecosystem. Mankind's effects upon the natural environment are a pervasive theme of the book. Kruckeberg looks at both positive and negative aspects of human interaction with nature in the Puget basin. By probing the interconnectedness of all natural aspects of one region, Kruckeberg illustrates ecological principles at work and gives us a basis for wise decision-making. The Natural History of Puget Sound Country is a comprehensive reference, invaluable for all citizens of the Northwest, as well as for conservationists, biologists, foresters, fisheries and wildlife personnel, urban planners, and environmental consultants everywhere. Lavishly illustrated with over three hundred photographs and drawings, it is much more than a beautiful book. It is a guide to our future.

How To Read The American West

Author: William Wyckoff
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 0295805374
Size: 38.73 MB
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From deserts to ghost towns, from national forests to California bungalows, many of the features of the western American landscape are well known to residents and travelers alike. But in How to Read the American West, William Wyckoff introduces readers anew to these familiar landscapes. A geographer and an accomplished photographer, Wyckoff offers a fresh perspective on the natural and human history of the American West and encourages readers to discover that history has shaped the places where people live, work, and visit. This innovative field guide includes stories, photographs, maps, and diagrams on a hundred landscape features across the American West. Features are grouped according to type, such as natural landscapes, farms and ranches, places of special cultural identity, and cities and suburbs. Unlike the geographic organization of a traditional guidebook, Wyckoff's field guide draws attention to the connections and the differences between and among places. Emphasizing features that recur from one part of the region to another, the guide takes readers on an exploration of the eleven western states with trips into their natural and cultural character. How to Read the American West is an ideal traveling companion on the main roads and byways in the West, providing unexpected insights into the landscapes you see out your car window. It is also a wonderful source for armchair travelers and people who live in the West who want to learn more about the modern West, how it came to be, and how it may change in the years to come. Showcasing the everyday alongside the exceptional, Wyckoff demonstrates how asking new questions about the landscapes of the West can let us see our surroundings more clearly, helping us make informed and thoughtful decisions about their stewardship in the twenty-first century. Watch the trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aYSmp5gZ4-I

Making Mountains

Author: David Stradling
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 9780295989891
Size: 21.94 MB
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For over two hundred years, the Catskill Mountains have been repeatedly and dramatically transformed by New York City. In Making Mountains, David Stradling shows the transformation of the Catskills landscape as a collaborative process, one in which local and urban hands, capital, and ideas have come together to reshape the mountains and the communities therein. This collaboration has had environmental, economic, and cultural consequences. Early on, the Catskills were an important source of natural resources. Later, when New York City needed to expand its water supply, engineers helped direct the city toward the Catskills, claiming that the mountains offered the purest and most cost-effective waters. By the 1960s, New York had created the great reservoir and aqueduct system in the mountains that now supplies the city with 90 percent of its water. The Catskills also served as a critical space in which the nation's ideas about nature evolved. Stradling describes the great influence writers and artists had upon urban residents - especially the painters of the Hudson River School, whose ideal landscapes created expectations about how rural America should appear. By the mid-1800s, urban residents had turned the Catskills into an important vacation ground, and by the late 1800s, the Catskills had become one of the premiere resort regions in the nation. In the mid-twentieth century, the older Catskill resort region was in steep decline, but the Jewish "Borscht Belt" in the southern Catskills was thriving. The automobile revitalized mountain tourism and residence, and increased the threat of suburbanization of the historic landscape. Throughout each of these significant incarnations, urban and rural residents worked in a rough collaboration, though not without conflict, to reshape the mountains and American ideas about rural landscapes and nature.