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Paradise Wild: Reimagining American Nature Paperback – March 1, 2003


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 312 pages
  • Publisher: Oregon State University Press; 1 edition (March 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0870715534
  • ISBN-13: 978-0870715532
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,990,036 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"...a thought-provoking series of personal meditations on Americans and their 'Paradise Lost' views of the environment." -- Seattle Post-Intelligencer

"...an exhilarating mix of skinned knees and scholarship . . . It is a rousing journey." -- The Olympian

About the Author

David Oates is the author of "Earth Rising: Ecological Belief in an Age of Science" and "Peace in Exile: Poems." He teaches English at Clark College in Vancouver, Washington, and lives in Portland, Oregon.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
A book of hard-won hope for everyone who loves the
natural world. Reminds us how deeply wild we all
are...Oates takes us on thought experiments, climbing
trips to high mountains, salmon-finding journeys up
the mighty Columbia--all in bright, crisp, personal
writing. A pleasure on every page!
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By A Customer on September 29, 2003
Format: Paperback
In Paradise Wild, David Oates explores the confusion between wilderness and wildness that often gets in the way of rational ecological thought. What we consider "wilderness" is often the cultural myths of lost Eden shrouding our view of the present reality. We tend to expend all of our energy extolling our grief while never really confronting the path that brought us here. Engaging the "wildness" that exists in everything, including humans, is a significant step on the road to ecological health.
Slipping between autobiographical narrative, academic research and philosophical contemplation, Oates tackles a difficult subject in a personable and readable fashion. He understands that in order to make real progress in our relations with the natural world, we will have to transform our perceptions of it, and is brave enough to challenge conventional wisdom on environmentalism. His writing is infused throughout with an arresting sense of place that is likely to kindle one's own Muir visions. Fortunately, after reading this, you'll be able to have them as easily in the backyard as atop a Sierra Nevada peak. A great book both for those already versed in their Wendell Berry and those wanting to explore the next wave of ecology.
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Format: Paperback
David Oates is a skilled, compelling guide through the ecological, political, literary, ethical, and spiritual challenges of our troubled times. There is hardly anywhere he doesn't take his readers for at least a moment, and, like Garrison Keelor, he addresses "life's persistent questions," with irony, humor and knife sharp intellegence. This is a book to read through once, as I did, with minimum interruptions, then to be savored a piece at a time. As he explores intellectually and metaphorically the connections between the human and the non-human worlds, he draws readers beyond despair into hope grounded in what is. And, by the way, Oates' writing is clean, accessible, and powerful. I first read Paradise Wild sitting in my garden; the next time I lift a pack and head into the wilderness, I plan to take it along.
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Format: Paperback
Enviromentalists and wilderness lovers who have been sinking deeper into the morass of despair over our seeming headlong rush into self-destruct would be well-advised to check out David Oates paradgm-shaking and highly readable volume. Oates follows the cultural myth of paradise lost through its many historical manifestations and then proposes a brand-new myth behind which suddenly surges a deep new sense of hope. If you catch what he's saying here you will find yourself walking through the wildness of the wilderness into the wildness of the suburbs and the malls until you arrive at an unexpected wildness in your own soul. This one really shook my world. Try it!
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