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In the Field, Among the Feathered: A History of Birders and Their Guides Hardcover – December 14, 2011

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In the Field, Among the Feathered: A History of Birders and Their Guides + Binocular Vision: The Politics of Representation in Birdwatching Field Guides (Critical Perspectives in the History of Environmental Design)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1st edition (December 14, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0199734593
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199734597
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 1 x 6.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,774,326 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"n the Field will be fascinating reading for any birder, naturalist, or student of environmental history. Highly recommended." --CHOICE

"In the Field, Among the Feathered should be read by birders of all stripes who want to know more about the evolution of their hobby (or obsession). It also makes an important contribution to environmental history, placing birding in its larger historical context. Dunlap shows how birding developed from a genteel activity for the well-to-do to an occasionally competitive sport, even as its practitioners kept an eye and an ear on environmental concerns."-Kurk Dorsey, author of The Dawn of Conservation Diplomacy

"Dunlap's brilliant environmental history of birders and their ubiquitous guides reveals new insights about a critical convergence of science, art, recreation, and conservation. His engaging and enlightening narrative demonstrates antecedents of our current enthusiasms for sustainability and clearly shows the critical role of citizen science and popular recreation in establishing the foundations for modern environmentalism. Wonderful and important."-Andy Kirk, author of Counterculture Green

"Thomas Dunlap's book shows how North American field guides have evolved since 1889 to meet the ever-growing expertise of birders. With today's guides, birds that a hundred years ago could be identified only in the hand are easily distinguished by sight or by song in the field. Highly recommended for field naturalists, historians, and folks looking for an engaging hobby."-Chandler S. Robbins, senior author of The Field Guide to Birds of North America

About the Author

Thomas R. Dunlap is Professor of History at Texas A&M University, He is the author of Faith in Nature: Environmentalism As Religious Quest.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By wogan TOP 500 REVIEWER on January 18, 2012
Format: Hardcover
This book is a history of field guides and birding; in effect a guide to field guides. A reader learns the history of bird guides and bird watching from Victorian times - when opera glasses were the method used to watch birds.
There are illustrations from pages of these first bird guides, most are not shown in colour - even if that was how they were published, although there is a 10 page colour section of illustrations to demonstrate what these guides did look like.

Peterson's guide, its history and the difference it made in guides is well covered.
Subjects covered in the book include; the history of guides and the hobby of bird watching from 1889 onward, knowledge and skills, changes in guides, the environment and environmental birding, and an index.

If you love birding and would like to know a bit of its history this would be interesting for you to read. What it is a bird guide, so please do not expect that.
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In the Field, Among the Feathered: A History of Birders and Their Guides
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