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Many of us go "back to nature" to get away from civilization. But as often as not, our expectations and actions are shaped by idealized notions of natural order, purity, and even neatness that are in fact impositions of civilization on nature. This is a highly insightful, sometimes ironic study of the influence of such paradoxes in the early 20th-century love affair with nature: anthropomorphized animal stories, summer camps, wildlife protection, landscaped cemeteries, wilderness novels and scenic turnoffs that imposed an industrial ethic of order, neatness, and regularity on natural systems. Recommended.Review:
"Contributes not only to our understanding of the place of wilderness in the popular mind, but to the forces that made early-twentieth-century Americans dissatisfied with the urban lives they had chosen."(John R. Stilgoe)
"The subject has needed detailed treatment for years, and I always expected the definitive study would be accomplished by a naturalist. But Peter Schmitt is a historian, and it's probably better that way after all. I guess this book is the one I've been looking for."(John Eastman Natural History)
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Book Description Oxford University Press, 1970. Hardcover. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0195000943