A Sand County Almanac and sketches here and there
by Leopold, Aldo -- 1886-1948
- pub. Oxford University Press, NY - 1949 (comerative edition 1987)       isbn 0-19-505305-2 - - - forward by Aldo Leopold. March 1948 p. vi - ix - - contents p. xi - xiii - - Introduction by Robert Finch. June 1987 p. xv - xxvii - - Pt.1 A Sand County Almanac p. 3 - 92 -- Pt.2 Sketches Here and There p. 93 - 162 - - Pt.3 p. 163 - 226 - - About the Author p. 227 - 228 - - total length - 228 p.
This is a commerative edition of the publication. It has a very useful introduction by Robert Finch which makes the writings of Aldo Leopold more intelligible for the modern reader. This is not to say it is a difficult read, but it was written immediately after WWII and the world and how we deal with the natural world is different now from then.
The first of what are in effect 3 books bound together A Sand County Almanac is a collection of articles by month describing some of the activities which occurred or may occur in that month. Leopold reveals an incredible depth of knowledge of the enviornment and all the natural living things on and around his farm.
The second part entitled Sketches Here and There consists of a number of short writings on various natural subjects, often revealing deep knowledge and interesting information.
The third part The Upshot would be a call to action to save parts of the world in their natural state, except Leopold understands how unlikely this would be. He also understands the tension between preserving actual wildness, and having that actual wilderness in such a state where it can actually be appreciated by people. He rails against making roads in and near wilderness as they eventually degrade and destroy wildnerness. On the other hand, few will be able to physically appreciate wilderness unless there is some of the destructive development (such as trail making) which is so troublesome.
I read this book while on vacation in Wisconsin. The Aldo Leopold farm was located in Sauk County, Wisconsin, just south of a bend in the Wisconsin River. The nearest city is Baraboo, Wisconsin. The Aldo Leopold Foundation has a study center there and offers enviornmental studies there.
This is a truly interesting read, though the first two parts are a fullfilling read, the last part is almost despairing.
~ 2015-07-01 ~

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