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The Boatman

Author: Robert M. Thorson
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674977726
Size: 24.54 MB
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Robert Thorson gives readers a Thoreau for the Anthropocene. The boatman and backyard naturalist was keenly aware of the way humans had altered the waterways and meadows of his beloved Concord River Valley. Yet he sought out for solace and pleasure those river sites most dramatically altered by human invention and intervention—for better and worse.

The Boatman

Author: Robert M. Thorson
Publisher:
ISBN: 9780674545090
Size: 30.36 MB
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The Boatman gives readers a Thoreau for the Anthropocene epoch. As a backyard naturalist and river enthusiast, Thoreau was keenly aware of the way humans had altered the waterways and meadows of his beloved Concord River Valley. And he recognized that he himself--a land surveyor by trade--was as complicit in these transformations as the bankers, lawyers, builders, landowners, and elected officials who were his clients. Robert Thorson tells a compelling story of intellectual growth, as Thoreau moved from anger, to lament, to acceptance of the way humans had changed the river he cherished more than Walden Pond. In his twenties, Thoreau had contemplated industrial sabotage against a downstream factory dam. By the mid-1850s he realized that humans and an "imperfect" nature were inseparable. His beliefs and scientific understanding of the river would be challenged again when he was hired in 1859 as a technical consultant for the River Meadow Association, in America's first statewide case for dam removal--a veritable class-action suit of more than five hundred petitioners that pitted local farmers against industrialists. Thorson offers the most complete account to date of this "flowage controversy," including Thoreau's behind-the-scenes investigations and the political corruption that eventually carried the day. In the years after the publication of Walden (1854), the river boatman's joy in the natural world was undiminished by the prospect of environmental change. Increasingly, he sought out for solace and pleasure those river sites most dramatically altered by human invention and intervention--for better and worse.

The Guide To Walden Pond

Author: Robert M. Thorson
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
ISBN: 1328489175
Size: 72.33 MB
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The first guidebook to the landscape and history of the literary shrine to Thoreau, Walden Pond.

Thoreau And The Language Of Trees

Author: Richard Higgins
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520294041
Size: 47.73 MB
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Trees were central to Henry David Thoreau’s creativity as a writer, his work as a naturalist, his thought, and his inner life. His portraits of them were so perfect, it was as if he could see the sap flowing beneath their bark. When Thoreau wrote that the poet loves the pine tree as his own shadow in the air, he was speaking about himself. In short, he spoke their language. In this original book, Richard Higgins explores Thoreau’s deep connections to trees: his keen perception of them, the joy they gave him, the poetry he saw in them, his philosophical view of them, and how they fed his soul. His lively essays show that trees were a thread connecting all parts of Thoreau’s being—heart, mind, and spirit. Included are one hundred excerpts from Thoreau’s writings about trees, paired with over sixty of the author’s photographs. Thoreau’s words are as vivid now as they were in 1890, when an English naturalist wrote that he was unusually able to “to preserve the flashing forest colors in unfading light.” Thoreau and the Language of Trees shows that Thoreau, with uncanny foresight, believed trees were essential to the preservation of the world.

Henry David Thoreau

Author: Laura Dassow Walls
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022634472X
Size: 31.69 MB
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“Walden. Yesterday I came here to live.” That entry from the journal of Henry David Thoreau, and the intellectual journey it began, would by themselves be enough to place Thoreau in the American pantheon. His attempt to “live deliberately” in a small woods at the edge of his hometown of Concord has been a touchstone for individualists and seekers since the publication of Walden in 1854. But there was much more to Thoreau than his brief experiment in living at Walden Pond. A member of the vibrant intellectual circle centered on his neighbor Ralph Waldo Emerson, he was also an ardent naturalist, a manual laborer and inventor, a radical political activist, and more. Many books have taken up various aspects of Thoreau’s character and achievements, but, as Laura Dassow Walls writes, “Thoreau has never been captured between covers; he was too quixotic, mischievous, many-sided.” Two hundred years after his birth, and two generations after the last full-scale biography, Walls restores Henry David Thoreau to us in all his profound, inspiring complexity. Walls traces the full arc of Thoreau’s life, from his early days in the intellectual hothouse of Concord, when the American experiment still felt fresh and precarious, and “America was a family affair, earned by one generation and about to pass to the next.” By the time he died in 1862, at only forty-four years of age, Thoreau had witnessed the transformation of his world from a community of farmers and artisans into a bustling, interconnected commercial nation. What did that portend for the contemplative individual and abundant, wild nature that Thoreau celebrated? Drawing on Thoreau’s copious writings, published and unpublished, Walls presents a Thoreau vigorously alive in all his quirks and contradictions: the young man shattered by the sudden death of his brother; the ambitious Harvard College student; the ecstatic visionary who closed Walden with an account of the regenerative power of the Cosmos. We meet the man whose belief in human freedom and the value of labor made him an uncompromising abolitionist; the solitary walker who found society in nature, but also found his own nature in the society of which he was a deeply interwoven part. And, running through it all, Thoreau the passionate naturalist, who, long before the age of environmentalism, saw tragedy for future generations in the human heedlessness around him. “The Thoreau I sought was not in any book, so I wrote this one,” says Walls. The result is a Thoreau unlike any seen since he walked the streets of Concord, a Thoreau for our time and all time.

Expect Great Things

Author: Kevin Dann
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0399184686
Size: 24.85 MB
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To coincide with the bicentennial of Thoreau's birth in 2017, this thrilling, meticulous biography by naturalist and historian Kevin Dann fills a gap in our understanding of one modern history's most important spiritual visionaries by capturing the full arc of Thoreau's life as a mystic, spiritual seeker, and explorer in transcendental realms. This sweeping, epic biography of Henry David Thoreau sees Thoreau's world as the mystic himself saw it: filled with wonder and mystery; Native American myths and lore; wood sylphs, nature spirits, and fairies; battles between good and evil; and heroic struggles to live as a natural being in an increasingly synthetic world. Above all, Expect Great Things critically and authoritatively captures Thoreau's simultaneously wild and intellectually keen sense of the mystical, mythical, and supernatural. Other historians have skipped past or undervalued these aspects of Thoreau's life. In this groundbreaking work, historian and naturalist Kevin Dann restores Thoreau's esoteric visions and explorations to their rightful place as keystones of the man himself.

Canoeing In The Wilderness

Author: Henry David Thoreau
Publisher: Herzberg Press
ISBN: 1409785963
Size: 50.46 MB
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PREFACE. THE Author of this very practical treatise on Scotch Loch - Fishing desires clearly that it may be of use to all who had it. He does not pretend to have written anything new, but to have attempted to put what he has to say in as readable a form as possible. Everything in the way of the history and habits of fish has been studiously avoided, and technicalities have been used as sparingly as possible. The writing of this book has afforded him pleasure in his leisure moments, and that pleasure would be much increased if he knew that the perusal of it would create any bond of sympathy between himself and the angling community in general. This section is interleaved with blank shects for the readers notes. The Author need hardly say that any suggestions addressed to the case of the publishers, will meet with consideration in a future edition. We do not pretend to write or enlarge upon a new subject. Much has been said and written-and well said and written too on the art of fishing but loch-fishing has been rather looked upon as a second-rate performance, and to dispel this idea is one of the objects for which this present treatise has been written. Far be it from us to say anything against fishing, lawfully practised in any form but many pent up in our large towns will bear us out when me say that, on the whole, a days loch-fishing is the most convenient. One great matter is, that the loch-fisher is depend- ent on nothing but enough wind to curl the water, -and on a large loch it is very seldom that a dead calm prevails all day, -and can make his arrangements for a day, weeks beforehand whereas the stream- fisher is dependent for a good take on the state of the water and however pleasant and easy it may be for one living near the banks of a good trout stream or river, it is quite another matter to arrange for a days river-fishing, if one is looking forward to a holiday at a date some weeks ahead. Providence may favour the expectant angler with a good day, and the water in order but experience has taught most of us that the good days are in the minority, and that, as is the case with our rapid running streams, -such as many of our northern streams are, -the water is either too large or too small, unless, as previously remarked, you live near at hand, and can catch it at its best. A common belief in regard to loch-fishing is, that the tyro and the experienced angler have nearly the same chance in fishing, -the one from the stern and the other from the bow of the same boat. Of all the absurd beliefs as to loch-fishing, this is one of the most absurd. Try it. Give the tyro either end of the boat he likes give him a cast of ally flies he may fancy, or even a cast similar to those which a crack may be using and if he catches one for every three the other has, he may consider himself very lucky. Of course there are lochs where the fish are not abundant, and a beginner may come across as many as an older fisher but we speak of lochs where there are fish to be caught, and where each has a fair chance. Again, it is said that the boatman has as much to do with catching trout in a loch as the angler. Well, we dont deny that. In an untried loch it is necessary to have the guidance of a good boatman but the same argument holds good as to stream-fishing...

Thoreau S Animals

Author: Henry David Thoreau
Publisher: Yale University Press
ISBN: 0300228066
Size: 26.76 MB
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From Thoreau’s renowned Journal, a treasury of memorable, funny, and sharply observed accounts of his encounters with the wild and domestic animals of Concord Many of the most vivid writings in the renowned Journal of Henry David Thoreau concern creatures he came upon when rambling the fields, forests, and wetlands of Concord and nearby communities. A keen and thoughtful observer, he wrote frequently about these animals, always sensitive to their mysteries and deeply appreciative of their beauty and individuality. Whether serenading the perch of Walden Pond with his flute, chasing a loon across the water’s surface, observing a battle between black and red ants, or engaging in a battle of wits with his family’s runaway pig, Thoreau penned his journal entries with the accuracy of a scientist and the deep spirituality of a transcendentalist and mystic. This volume, like its companion Thoreau’s Wildflowers, is arranged by the days of the year, following the progress of the turning seasons. A selection of his original sketchbook drawings is included, along with thirty-five exquisite illustrations by naturalist and artist Debby Cotter Kaspari.

Thoreau S Wildflowers

Author: Henry David Thoreau
Publisher: Yale University Press
ISBN: 0300214774
Size: 76.69 MB
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Some of Henry David Thoreau's most beautiful nature writing was inspired by the flowering trees and plants of Concord. An inveterate year-round rambler and journal keeper, he faithfully recorded, dated, and described his sightings of the floating water lily, the elusive wild azalea, and the late autumn foliage of the scarlet oak. This inviting selection of Thoreau's best flower writings is arranged by day of the year and accompanied by Thoreau's philosophical speculations and his observations of the weather and of other plants and animals. They illuminate the author's spirituality, his belief in nature's correspondence with the human soul, and his sense that anticipation--of spring, of flowers yet to bloom--renews our connection with the earth and with immortality. Thoreau's Wildflowers features more than 200 of the black-and-white drawings originally created by Barry Moser for his first illustrated book, Flowering Plants of Massachusetts. This volume also presents "Thoreau as Botanist," an essay by Ray Angelo, the leading authority on the flowering plants of Concord.