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Gary Snyder has been a major cultural force in America for five decades. Future readers will come to see this book as one of the central texts on wilderness and the interaction of nature and culture. The nine essays in The Practice of the Wild reveal why Snyder has gone on to become one of America’s cultural leaders, comprehending things about our world before they were ever discussed in public. With thoughts ranging from political and spiritual matters to those regarding the environment and the art of becoming native to this continent, this collection of essays, first published in 1990, reflect the mature centerpiece of the author’s work and thought.
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Snyder writes as a missionary for the spiritual communions of our earth, but his cause is not well served by his own reading of it. From his very first words, Snyder conveys a sense of pedantry. He lectures carefully, speaking in jerky phrases with odd inflections and spaces his frequent lists as if to allow a student time for note-taking. He compounds this feeling by pronouncing foreign expressions, Native American or Oriental with a meticulous accent. Only when a section takes a narrative tone does his speech accelerate to a more conversational pace. This is a difficult type of literature to read without sounding like horatory. S.B.S. (c)AudioFile, Portland, MaineFrom Publishers Weekly:
Essayist and Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Snyder ( Turtle Island ) offers nine sensitive and thoughtful essays blending his personal Buddhist beliefs, respect for wildlife and the land, and fascination with language and mythic tradition into a "meditation on what it means to be human." In "The Place, the Region, and the Commons," he relates the old English concept of the common to publicly held U.S. forests, expressing concern that Americans, who lack an intimate familiarity with the land, "are not actually living here intellectually, imaginatively, or morally." "Tawny Grammar," referring to a Spanish phrase for knowledge of nature, examines this knowledge through a school curriculum in northwest Alaska that combines traditional native values and marketable skills. "Ancient Forests of the Far West" contrasts Snyder's experience as a logger in the 1950s, when the industry still exercised restraint, with the current depletion of American woodlands. And "The Woman Who Married a Bear" comments on relations between bears and humans through a Native American myth about a girl who is carried off by a grizzly that assumes the form of a man.
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Book Description Counterpoint, 2003. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M1593760167
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