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The prominent contributors in Conservation Reconsidered establish a fundamentally original view of the conservation movement and the impact of public policy on nature. This collection of essays articulate the belief that the thinkers and actors who helped develop the conservation movement-notably John Muir, Theodore Roosevelt, Gifford Pinchot and Aldo Leopold-have been seriously misunderstood by scholars who have analyzed them in the context of contemporary environmental debates. Conservationism, the contributors argue, was a diverse movement dealing with difficult questions about the relationship of human beings to nature in a modern liberal democratic state. The essays place conservationism within the framework of 19th century American political thinkers including Darwin, Emerson, Thoreau and Olmsted, and they illuminate perennial questions about citizenship and our place in the natural world. Conservation Reconsidered takes a new look at what is problematic about the legacy of American conservationism and explores worthy alternatives to the dominant environmentalist thinking of today.
environmental politics in America should begin here, where it all began.
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Chapter 1 Preface Part 2 Conservationalists Chapter 3 Saving the Wilderness for Sacramental Use: John Muir Chapter 4 "With Utter Disregard of Pain and Woe:" Theodore Roosevelt on Conservation and Nature Chapter 5 Gifford Pinchot, Founder: A New Look at Breaking New Ground Chapter 6 Aldo Leopold's Human Ecology Part 7 Precursors Chapter 8 Charles Darwin and John Muir Chapter 9 The Mystery of Nature and Culture: Ralph Waldo Emerson Chapter 10 Henry David Thoreau Chapter 11 Frederick Law Olmstead: Civic Environmentalist Chapter 12 Afterword