Humboldt Current: Nineteenth-Century Exploration and the Roots of American Environmentalism

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9781422390986: Humboldt Current: Nineteenth-Century Exploration and the Roots of American Environmentalism
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An intellectual history of the contributions of the nineteenth-century explorer to American culture and science seeks to restore him from obscurity and reveals his pivotal role in the careers of J. N. Reynolds, Clarence King, George Wallace Melville, and John Muir. 25,000 first printing.

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About the Author:

Aaron Sachs is a professor of history and American studies at Cornell University and an award- winning environmental journalist. This is his first book.

From Publishers Weekly:

American history of the 19th century is dominated by the Civil War, the expansion to the Pacific and the push to industrialization, but it is worth recalling the prominent interest in natural history in the U.S., a movement of which the tremendously popular Prussian scientist Alexander von Humboldt (1769–1859) was more or less the first practitioner. Arguably the Einstein of his day in terms of fame, accomplishment and influence, the explorer and author of the magisterial work Cosmos had a huge impact on American environmentalism. This ambitious subject is admirably tackled in this complexly argued book by Sachs, an environmental journalist and history professor at Cornell. Sachs cannily divides the book into the four points of the compass, addressing East (Europe's influence), South (excursions to Antarctica), West (exploring the frontier) and North (failed attempts to conquer the North Pole). The author chooses four explorer-naturalists—J.N. Reynolds, Clarence King, George Wallace Melville and John Muir—to represent the various tributaries of Humboldt's considerable influence. In this timely read, he even documents the naturalist impulse in writers such as Thoreau, Whitman and, surprisingly, Poe. (Aug.)
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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780143111924: The Humboldt Current: Nineteenth-Century Exploration and the Roots of American Environmentalism

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ISBN 10:  0143111922 ISBN 13:  9780143111924
Publisher: Penguin Books, 2007
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9780670037759: The Humboldt Current: Nineteenth-Century Exploration and the Roots of American Environmentalism

Viking..., 2006
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9780199215195: The Humboldt Current

Oxford..., 2007
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