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A Storied Wilderness: rewilding the Apostle Islands (Weyerhaeuser environmental books) [Kindle Edition]

James W. Feldman
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Book Description

The Apostle Islands are a solitary place of natural beauty that rise out of Lake Superior. Now designated a wilderness area, efforts are underway to "rewild" land that has been shaped and reshaped by people for centuries. This book tells the story of how we came to equate human activity exclusively with the loss of nature and wilderness when in reality all our wildernesses are products of complicated interactions between human and natural processes.

Editorial Reviews


"An insightful chapter to the ongoing wilderness debates about the central role of humans in the wilderness." -Lissy Goralnik, Journal of Environmental Studies Vol.2

Product Details

  • File Size: 4124 KB
  • Print Length: 346 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0295990961
  • Publisher: University of Washington Press (July 1, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0094IVNNM
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #998,670 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jay Turner July 29, 2011
This is a wonderful book. If you already know the Apostle Islands, Feldman offers a new way to read the landscape that will change the way you look at each dock, each beach, and each clearing in the woods. But Feldman also wraps big questions about what wilderness is, why we protect it, and how we manage it around one of the most fascinating national parks in the United States. If you are interested in a new way to conceptualize the shared role of people and nature in recreating wild landscapes, Feldman offers a compelling framework -- "rewilding." As Feldman argues in the introduction, "Rewilding landscapes should not be interpreted as evidence neither of past human abuse nor of triumphant wild nature, but as examples of the ongoing impact of human choices on natural processes and of natural conditions on human history. These landscapes represent both history and nature, working simultaneously and together." Embracing those stories doesn't diminish wilderness; instead, it offers us a rich new way to think about our relationship to Nature, both in the past and future.
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By Randy
Feldman's genius is in the way he mixes his true sentiment for this pristine area, unknown to many, with a realistic and practical approach to the way we think about natural preservation. He motivates you to think about human impact while sharing excerpts from his experience and so gracefully detailed written perspective with a friend or loved one.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Anthropocentric distractions March 15, 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
A Storied Wilderness by James Feldman is a well written meticulous description of Lake Superior's Apostle Islands transitioning from local sustainability to market driven rural resource recovery to seasonal home/tourism and finally to it's present status as a eco-wilderness. The book is valuable in recounting and capturing the historical progression.

The author and the NPS are to be commended in their call to blend history into nature. To do so they are challenging the Jolly Green Giant of wilderness-as-religion mantra that has driven environmental discourse to anthropocentric distraction.

However NPS's injection of cultural vignettes is little more than tokenism in what amounts to a checkerboard, live-tree rather than animatronics, theme park. It is artifice designed to provide the illusion of nature while fostering the delusion of a present new and improved non-consumption.

Just as the former schemes failed as the resources proved too limited to service the cities gregarious needs, so too shall the present panacea prove fallacious. Eco-tourism footprint merely displaces the resources needed for such sport to transport and industry of unseen elsewhere's. Such "preserves" of less visible use are constructs to salve the past and satisfy present narratives. They are the jolly greens of idyllic `pre-contact" stasis, surrounded by exclusionary filters to sort out the unholy while concurrently preventing nature from fulfilling her legacy.

Even rewilding the prime mover of nature is used anthropocentrically as an ointment to remove the vestiges of white man guilt. Rewilding at man's direction is gardening, plot by plot of self righteous dreamscapes rather than allowing nature to regaining her design.
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More About the Author

Jim Feldman is an associate professor of environmental studies and history at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh.


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