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"As a young anthropologist I never understood how I was supposed to turn up at some village... announce that I was staying for a year, and then notify the headman that he and his people were to feed and house me while I studied their lives," writes Davis (Shadows in the Sun: Travels to Landscapes of Spirit and Desire) in the introduction to this stunning collection of photographs that span the 25 years of his career. His solution was to find cultural common ground through the study of food and plants, which often was the ostensible reason for his travels through Canada, the Andes, the Amazon, Haiti, Kenya and Tibet. While Davis emphasizes that "at no time was photography [my] principal pursuit," his photographs are visually dazzling. A smiling Barasana boy of the Northwest Amazon holds a brilliantly colored macaw. A man in Haiti stands beneath the downpour of a torrential cataract, his clothes torn off by the force of the water. Indeed, these dramatic photographs frequently overshadow Davis's informative, witty essays, which introduce each of the seven chapters. In these, he shares anecdotes about the people he's met, reflects on the effects of colonialism in these areas and laments the uncertain fate of groups like the Penan of Borneo and the nomads of Kenya. Beautifully designed and produced, this album will delight armchair travelers.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Ethnobotanist and anthropologist Davis, author of One River (1996) and Shadows in the Sun (1998), has traveled the world for 25 years, pen and camera in hand, to study the myriad ways indigenous people live in physical and spiritual intimacy with the natural world. Driven by curiosity and a profound respect for the "ethnosphere," humanity's diverse "thoughts, beliefs, myths, and intuitions," Davis has dwelled among the people of the Arctic, the Amazon, Haiti, Kenya, Borneo, Australia, and Tibet, learning their modes of being, cosmologies, and botanical expertise. His quest has rendered him acutely sensitive to the connection between biodiversity and cultural diversity, and as he portrays in pellucid language and magnificent photographs healers, shamans, hunters, and men, women, and children adept at survival in the most demanding of wildernesses, he decries the rampant environmental destruction and globalization that are decimating indigenous cultures, thus depriving future generations of their knowledge, wisdom, and unique perspectives. Aesthetically powerful in both word and image, this essential volume opens readers' eyes and imaginations to the wonders of the earth and humanity's varied "insights into the very nature of existence," a bounty and legacy we simply cannot do without. Donna Seaman
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Wade Davis is an amazing intellectual. This book argues that all cultures are relevant and that modern ones are not "better", just different. Read morePublished 7 months ago by S. Katz
A little beat up, but I did know it would be used when I bought it.Published 9 months ago by Norma Gonzalez
A deeply thoughtful, provocative perspective on the gifts of indigenous people being destroyed or ignored by the modern world.Published 12 months ago by ecogeezer
Kind of book that you read quickly and give away, not staying on my bookshelf...Published 13 months ago by kim
For modernity to really be effective, I think we should invite disappearing indigenous cultures into a new period of acceptance and honor. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Beth Whittemore