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The Lost Amazon: The Photographic Journey of Richard Evans Schultes Paperback – Bargain Price, August 28, 2007


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Prestel (August 28, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 3791338145
  • ISBN-13: 978-3791338149
  • ASIN: B000W7GI70
  • Product Dimensions: 11.2 x 11 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,439,497 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

A cross between Indiana Jones and Timothy Leary, Harvard botanist Schultes explored the farthest reaches of Amazonia in the middle decades of the 20th century and discovered hundreds of new plant species, including a number of hallucinogenic plants that helped spark the psychedelic revolution of the 1960s. He took peyote with Kiowa medicine men for his undergrad thesis, and after that he was never too sick, crippled or pressed for time to detour miles through the rainforest to ingest an unfamiliar hallucinogen in a shamanic ritual. He even fixed up William Burroughs with some ayahuasca "vision vine," thanks to which the beat demigod "achieved pure bisexuality, becoming a man or a woman at will, awash with wild convulsions of lust." Schultes was also a talented amateur photographer, and this engaging biographical essay, adapted by ethnobotanist Davis (The Serpent and the Rainbow) from his full-length biography, is paired with gorgeous reproductions of Schultes’s black-and-white photographs from his travels among the Amazonian Indians. The photos include well-observed anthropological documents of Indian rituals and crafts, candid shots of everyday life and romantic photos of towering mesas, thundering falls and mist-shrouded rivers. The result is an absorbing biographical and visual record of a quickly vanishing culture and landscape and a larger-than-life explorer of exterior and interior terrains.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Schultes (1915-2001), of Harvard University, was a plant explorer and expert in sacred hallucinogenic plants. He was also, according to one of his proteges, ethnobotanist Davis, "a lover of all things Indian and Amazonian." Davis presented an in-depth portrait of his mentor in One River (1996) and now reveals another facet of this remarkable pioneer, Schultes' gifts as a field photographer. Schultes took hundreds of photographs of the northwest Amazon between 1941 and 1953, using a Rolleiflex twin-lens reflex camera, which, as Davis so astutely observes, required the photographer to hold the camera at waist height and gaze down into it, thus bowing to one's subject. This posture of respect is in keeping with Schultes' sense of reverence and wonder, a quality palpable in his striking black-and-white photographs of Amazonians and their magnificent and mysterious world. An exhibition based on the book is touring the country, and with a foreword by another of Schultes' students, Andrew Weil, and Davis' illuminating commentary, The Lost Amazon stands as a keystone volume in the history of the Amazon. Donna Seaman
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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A great introduction and summary of Schultes.
E-Consumer
He wrote many books about his travels, which would also make interesting reading, especially as they relat ehte knowledge he gathered.
Denis Benchimol Minev
Beautiful, pristine photography of a time long gone.
William J. Higgins,III

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Denis Benchimol Minev on August 5, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Schultes was perhaps the greatest ethnobotanists of all time and definitely the father of the subject. In this book, his pupil (and today famed explorer) Wade Davis puts together a sampling of his photographs throughout his life in the Amazon, providing a visual context to the story about the great scientist and explorer.

Schultes lived among indians for many years in the northwestern Amazon, in search for knowledge about its plants and their secrets. He uncovered many hallucinogenic plants in the process, which earned him a cult status in the 1970s. During his time with the indians, he was able to build strong relationships with the natives, which earned a position of respect and gave him the ability to explore their land and knowledge deeply.

Schultes is one of the last great explorers who disconnected himself from the outside world for years in order to collect new specimens and search for more knowledge. Such figures are rare, if at existent in the modern world. He wrote many books about his travels, which would also make interesting reading, especially as they relat ehte knowledge he gathered. This is more of a coffee table type of book, with many pictures and less story. Having read one of his books, I appreciated seeing the pictures of his time in the Amazon.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By David Howard on December 28, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Very well documented history of the professional life of Richard Evans Schultes years in the Amazon. Gives you the insight on how to view and treat native people. Written with respect for Schultes and his contribution to the history of our planet. Exquisite photography.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Stewart Brand on January 16, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This is the way to see the Amazon, through the Rolleiflex camera of one of the greatest explorer-scientists.

This is the way to hear of the Amazon, through the Irish tale-telling of Wade Davis, himself an epic explorer-scientist.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By William J. Higgins,III on March 19, 2009
Format: Hardcover
More than a coffee-table book, this is an excellent portrayal of the 1940's and 1950's Amazon Basin...its landscapes, river systems, natural sciences, peoples and cultures.
Dr. Richard Evans Schultes was possibly the greatest ethnobotanists of the 20th century. Compiled by one of his former students, Wade Davis, this is a pictorial depiction and abbreviated biography of this remarkable man.

Collecting more than twenty thousand plants, naming over two hundred new species and genera to science while displaying the highest regard to the many indigenous groups, Schultes was readily accepted into these small communities.
For over twelve years he learned first-hand of the hundreds of useful plants for foods, medicines, materials and hallucinogenic purposes. The man was an eye-opener for this branch of botany and its ramifications to anthropology.

Beautiful, pristine photography of a time long gone.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a book of extraordinary photographs taken by the greatest Amazonian plant explorer of the past century. As one who compiled the collection and wrote the introductory essay, I find it inappropriate that its rating is brought down by a customer complaining about a bookseller, as opposed to reviewing the book. Amazon.com should surely decline to post such comments that have nothing whatsoever to do with the book in question.
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