Landscape with Figures : Nature and Culture in New England

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2001-11-01
  • Publisher: Univ of Iowa Pr
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Kent Ryden does not deny that the natural landscape of New England is shaped by many centuries of human manipulation, but he also takes the view that nature is everywhere, close to home as well as in more remote wilderness, in the city and in the countryside. In Landscape with Figures he dissolves the border between culture and nature to merge ideas about nature, experiences in nature, and material alterations of nature.

Ryden takes his readers from the printed page directly to the field and back again. He often bypasses books and goes to the trees from which they are made and the landscapes they evoke, then returns with a renewed appreciation for just what an interdisciplinary, historically informed approach can bring to our understanding of the natural world. By exploring McPhee's The Pine Barrens and Ehrlich's The Solace of Open Spaces, the coastal fiction of New England, surveying and Thoreau's The Maine Woods, Maine's abandoned Cumberland and Oxford Canal, and the natural bases for New England's historical identity, Ryden demonstrates again and again tha

Table of Contents

Foreword ix
Wayne Franklin
Preface xvii
Big Trees and Back Yards: Time, Landscape, and the Borders of Nature
Landscape with Figures: Land and Tradition in American Nature Writing
Sea Green: Ethics and Environment in New England Coastal Fiction
``A Labyrinth of Errors'': Thoreau, Cartography, and The Maine Woods
A Walk in the Woods: Art and Artifact in a New England Forest
Redesigning the River: Nature, Technology, and the Cumberland and Oxford Canal
Natural Landscapes, Cultural Regions; or, What Is Natural about New England?
Notes 283(24)
Index 307

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