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The Sunflower Forest: Ecological Restoration…
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The Sunflower Forest: Ecological Restoration and the New Communion with…

by William R. Jordan III

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This is a difficult book to sum up quickly--you might expect it to be all about ecological restoration, but it is primarily a book of ideas. Nonetheless it is very interesting and covers some surprising ground. I think it is a good book for people who live in intentional communities to read, and for anyone who has ever wanted to get "back to the land." To summarize as briefly as possible--Jordan conceives of ecological restoration as a positive ritual act that we perform as a way to deal with our shame about what we take from nature. It's value is not only in the restored landscape, but in the change that it effects on us and the new relationship that is created between us and the landscape through restoration. Through restoration we learn to value the intricacies of a natural ecosystem: in trying to replicate nature we realize how truly amazing it is. People who participate in restoration projects come to care about and feel invested in the areas they restore. And through restoration we learn what can and can not be restored, knowledge that is very important to have. It is definitely a thought provoking book, whether you agree with his arguments or not it is worth reading. ( )
  sumariotter | Nov 2, 2011 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0520233204, Hardcover)

Ecological restoration, the attempt to guide damaged ecosystems back to a previous, usually healthier or more natural, condition, is rapidly gaining recognition as one of the most promising approaches to conservation. In this book, William R. Jordan III, who coined the term "restoration ecology," and who is widely respected as an intellectual leader in the field, outlines a vision for a restoration-based environmentalism that has emerged from his work over twenty-five years.
Drawing on a provocative range of thinkers, from anthropologists Victor Turner, Roy Rappaport, and Mary Douglas to literary critics Frederick Turner, Leo Marx, and R.W.B. Lewis, Jordan explores the promise of restoration, both as a way of reversing environmental damage and as a context for negotiating our relationship with nature.
Exploring restoration not only as a technology but also as an experience and a performing art, Jordan claims that it is the indispensable key to conservation. At the same time, he argues, restoration is valuable because it provides a context for confronting the most troubling aspects of our relationship with nature. For this reason, it offers a way past the essentially sentimental idea of nature that environmental thinkers have taken for granted since the time of Emerson and Muir.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:08:53 -0400)

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