9780300116410

Emerald City : An Environmental History of Seattle

by
  • ISBN13:

    9780300116410

  • ISBN10:

    0300116411

  • Format: Trade Book
  • Copyright: 2007-11-27
  • Publisher: Yale University Press
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Summary

At the foot of the snow-capped Cascade Mountains on the forested shores of Puget Sound, Seattle is set in a location of spectacular natural beauty. Boosters of the city have long capitalized on this splendor, recently likening it to the fairytale capital of L. Frank Baum'sThe Wizard of Oz, the Emerald City. But just as Dorothy, Toto, and their traveling companions discover a darker reality upon entering the green gates of the imaginary Emerald City, those who look more closely at Seattle's landscape will find that it reveals a history marked by environmental degradation and urban inequality. This book explores the role of nature in the development of the city of Seattle from the earliest days of its settlement to the present. Combining environmental history, urban history, and human geography, Matthew Klingle shows how attempts to reshape nature in and around Seattle have often ended not only in ecological disaster but also social inequality. The price of Seattle's centuries of growth and progress has been paid by its wildlife, including the famous Pacific salmon, and its poorest residents. Klingle proposes a bold new way of understanding the interdependence between nature and culture, and he argues for what he calls an "ethic of place." Using Seattle as a compelling case study, he offers important insights for every city seeking to live in harmony with its natural landscape.

Author Biography

Matthew Klingle is assistant professor of history and environmental studies, Bowdoin College. He lives in Brunswick, ME.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. xi
List of Mapsp. xiv
Acknowledgmentsp. xv
Prologue: The Fish that Might Save Seattlep. 1
All the Forces of Nature Are on Their Side: The Unraveling of the Mixed Worldp. 12
The Work Which Nature Had Left Undone: Making Private Property on the Waterfront Commonsp. 44
The Imagination and Creative Energy of the Engineer: Harnessing Nature's Forces to Urban Progressp. 86
Out of Harmony with the Wild Beauty of the Natural Woods: Artistry Versus Utility in Seattle's Olmsted Parksp. 119
Above the Weary Cares of Life: The Benefits and High Social Price of Outdoor Leisurep. 154
Junk-Yard for Human Junk: The Unnatural Ecology of Urban Povertyp. 180
Death for a Tired Old River: Ecological Restoration and Environmental Inequity in Postwar Seattlep. 203
Masses of Self-Centered People: Salmon and the Limits of Ecotopia in Emerald Cityp. 230
Epilogue: The Geography of Hope: Toward an Ethic of Place and a City of Justicep. 265
Notesp. 281
Indexp. 323
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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