Language of the Earth: A Literary Anthology / Edition 2

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Man's complex relationship to planet Earth is explored in this new edition of the tandmark literary anthology, Language of the Earth. This volume provides a portrait of the planet as experienced not just by scientists, but by artists, aviators, poets, philosophers, novelists, historians, and sociologists as well. It seeks to represent the human experience over the centuries, covering a span of 2,500 years.

At the same time, Language of the Earth reflects the planet's extraordinary diversity, from dripping mines and caves to the high deserts of the Andes, the Antarctic ice sheet, and even the surface of the moon. Its comprehensive approach bridges the gap between science and the humanities. Arranged in four distinct parts, with writings from 117 different authors, Language of the Earth surveys the richness, beauty, and sustainability of the planet.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“The book perfectly illustrates the beauty, the enigmatic complexity and the insidiously violent character of the Earth.” (The Holocene, May 2009)

“Anyone interested in planet Earth, whether in its rocks and soil, or the animals and plants which inhabit it, or in the people who have in the past tried to explore, describe, and explain it, will find something of interest here. Recommended.” (Choice, November 2008)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781405160674
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 2/19/2008
  • Edition description: Revised
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 344
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 9.70 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Frank H.T. Rhodes is President Emeritus of Cornell University. Winner of the Geological Society’s Bigsby Medal and the Ian Campbell Medal from the Geological Society of America, Rhodes has served as Chairman of the National Science Board, President of the American Philosophical Society, and Chairman of the American Council on Education and also the American Association of Universities. His other books include The Evolution of Life, Geology, Evolution, Fossils, and The Creation of the Future, as well as many articles on geology, higher education, and the history of science.

Richard O. Stone (1920–78) was Chairman of the Department of Geological Sciences, UCLA. A past member of several honorary societies, Dr Stone wrote many technical articles for Geological Society of America, Journal of Sedimentary Petrology, and American Institute of Mining and Metallurgical Engineers.

Bruce D. Malamud is a Reader in Natural and Environmental Hazards at King’s College, London. A past Peace Corps volunteer in Niger and Fulbright Fellow in Argentina, he currently serves as Chief Editor of Nonlinear Processes in Geophysics and President of the Natural Hazards Division of the European Geosciences Union. He has over forty publications in the international scientific literature, including Science, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Journal of Geophysical Research, and Earth & Planetary Science Letters.

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Table of Contents

Preface     ix
Preface from the first edition     xii
Acknowledgments from the first edition     xv
The Earth Experienced     1
Eyewitness Accounts of Earth Events     3
Los Angeles Against the Mountains   John McPhee     4
The Night the Mountain Fell   Gordon Gaskill     6
The Turtle Mountain Slide   R.G. McConnell   R.W. Brock     11
Candide   Voltaire     12
The Lisbon Earthquake   James R. Newman     15
The Temblor   Mary Austin     18
The Alaskan Good Friday Earthquake   Jonathan Weiner     21
Tsunami   Francis P. Shepard     23
Not a Very Sensible Place for a Stroll   Haroun Tazieff     24
Last Days of St Pierre   Fairfax Downey     29
Beacons on the Passage Out   Hans Cloos     32
Eruption of the Oraefajokull, 1727   Jon Thorlakson     35
Exploration     38
The Voyage of the Beagle   Charles Darwin     38
The Map that Changed the World   Simon Winchester     40
The Exploration of the Colorado River   John Wesley Powell     42
Mono Lake-Aurora-Sonora Pass   William H. Brewer     44
Thrills in Fossil Hunting   George F. Sternberg     45
The Creative Explosion   John E. Pfeiffer     47
Attending Marvels: A Patagonian Journal   George Gaylord Simpson     49
Explorations   Robert D. Ballard     50
The Blue Planet   Louise B. Young     53
Geologists are also Human     54
Stepping Stones   Stephen Drury     55
William Buckland   Elizabeth O.B. Gordon     56
The Old Red Sandstone   Hugh Miller     60
A Long Life's Work   Sir Archibald Geikie     64
Life, Time, and Darwin   Frank H.T. Rhodes     66
King's Formative Years   R.A. Bartlett     69
With Shackleton in the Antarctic   M.E. David     72
The Great Diamond Hoax   William H. Goetzmann     76
Sand, Wind, and War$dForeword by Luna B. Leopold$dPaul D. Komar$dVance Haynes     79
Ship's Wake   Hans Cloos     81
Celebrities     85
Benjamin Franklin and the Gulf Stream   H. Stommel      85
Leonardo Da Vinci as a Geologist   Thomas Clements     87
Mineralogy, Geology, Meteorology   R. Magnus     89
Megalonyx, Mammoth, and Mother Earth   E.T. Martin     93
Three Short, Happy Months   William A. Stanley     96
Mountain-Worship   W.G. Collingwood     98
Stanford University, 1891-1895   Herbert C. Hoover     100
Interpreting the Earth     103
Philosophy     105
Concerning the System of the Earth, its Duration and Stability   James Hutton     106
The Method of Multiple Working Hypotheses   T.C. Chamberlin     110
Historical Science   George Gaylord Simpson     113
What is a Species?   Stephen Jay Gould     116
Messages in Stone   Christine Turner     119
Natural Science, Natural Resources, and the Nature of Nature   Marcia G. Bjornerud     120
Does God Play Dice?   Ian Stewart     123
The Fossil Record     126
Earth and Man   Frank H.T. Rhodes     127
Flowering Earth   Donald Culross Peattie     129
Habits and Habitats   Robert Claiborne     134
Diplodocus, The Dinosaur   James A. Michener     137
A Window on the Oligocene   Berton Roueche     141
A Fish Caught in Time   Samantha Weinberg     143
Ape-like Ancestors   Richard E. Leakey     145
The Relic Men   Loren Eiseley     146
Geotectonics     151
From the Boundless Deep & The Birth of the Rockies   James A. Michener     152
When Pigs Ruled the Earth   Anna Grayson     155
The Living Planet   David Attenborough     158
The Road to Jaramillo   William Glen     161
Mao's Almanac: 3,000 Years of Killer Earthquakes   J. Tuzo Wilson     163
Geologic Jeopardy   Richard H. Jahns     167
Controversies     171
Apes, Angels, and Victorians   William Irvine     172
The Great Piltdown Hoax   William L. Straus, Jr     175
Fossils and Free Enterprisers   Howard S. Miller     179
The K-T Extinction   Charles Officer   Jake Page     182
The Founders of Geology   Sir Archibald Geikie     185
To a Rocky Moon    Don E. Wilhelms     188
Properties and Composition of Lunar Materials: Earth Analogies   Edward Schreiber   Orson L. Anderson     190
CFCs   Joel L. Swerdlow     192
Language of the Earth     195
Prose     197
Out of Africa   Isak Dinesen     197
Seven Pillars of Wisdom   T.E. Lawrence     200
Green Hills of Africa   Ernest Hemingway     201
Wind, Sand and Stars   Antoine de Saint-Exupery     202
The French Lieutenant's Woman   John Fowles     204
Trip to the Middle and North Forks of San Joaquin River   John Muir     207
Roughing It   Mark Twain     209
A Place on the Glacial Till   Thomas Fairchild Sherman     211
Basin and Range   John McPhee     213
Neanderthal   John Darnton     215
Antarctica   Kim Stanley Robinson     218
The Lost World   Sir Arthur Conan Doyle     220
Poetry     223
Landscape and Literature   Sir Archibald Geikie     224
The Excursion   William Wordsworth      226
The Lisbon Earthquake   Voltaire     227
The Fountains of the Earth   C.S. Rafinesque     228
To a Trilobite   Timothy A. Conrad     229
A Shropshire Lad   A.E. Housman     230
Mente et Malleo   Andrew C. Lawson     230
Selected Poems   John Stuart Blackie     232
Lyell's Hypothesis Again   Kenneth Rexroth     233
Selected Poems   A.R. Ammons     234
Stone   Charles Simic     236
Fossils   J.T. Barbarese     236
Rock   Jane Hirshfield     237
Poetry Matters: Gary Snyder   W. Scott McLean   Eldridge M. Moores   David A. Robertson     238
Where Shall Wisdom Be Found?$dThe Book of Job     242
Art     244
A Land: Sculpture   Jacquetta Hawkes     245
Beyond Modern Sculpture   Jack Burnham     247
Time's Profile: John Wesley Powell, Art, and Geology at the Grand Canyon   Elizabeth C. Childs     249
Thomas Moran: American Landscape Painter   R.A. Bartlett     253
Earth Calling   Diane Ackerman      255
The Crowded Planet     257
Human History     259
Minerals and World History   John D. Ridge     260
A Land: Architecture   Jacquetta Hawkes     261
The Geologic and Topographic Setting of Cities   Donald F. Eschman   Melvin G. Marcus     263
Topography and Strategy in the War   Douglas W. Johnson     266
Geology and Crime   John McPhee     268
Tambora and Krakatau   Kenneth E.F. Watt     269
Mortgaging the Old Homestead   Lord Ritchie-Calder     273
Breathing the Future and the Past   Harlow Shapley     275
Resources     277
Wealth from the Salt Seas   Rachel L. Carson     278
Minerals, People, and the Future   Charles F. Park, Jr     280
The Bingham Canyon Pit   M. Dane Picard     282
The Geological Attitude   John G.C.M. Fuller     284
Geology - For Human Needs   Michel T. Halbouty     286
Benevolent Planet     289
Gaia   James Lovelock     290
The Web of Life   Fritjof Capra     291
Remember the Land   Charles Morgan     292
Rachel Carson: The Idea of Environment   Gabriele Kass-Simon     293
Silent Spring   Rachel L. Carson     294
Who is El Nino?   S. George Philander     295
Essay on the Earth Sciences$dNational Research Council     297
The Round Walls of Home   Diane Ackerman     299
The Butterfly Effect   Ernest Zebrowski, Jr     301
Pale Blue Dot   Carl Sagan     304
Sources     305
Names index     315
Subject index     320
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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 26, 2008

    Outstanding collection of writings about the earth

    This literary anthology of writings to do with the earth is really fun to read and is well organized. All the excerpts (from current and past authors) have something to do with the earth. There are many 'earth writings' subjects including natural disasters, the beauty of the earth, earth's resources, philosophies about the earth (Gaia, fractals), etc. The authors the editors chose range from thousands of years ago to present, and include many recognized literary authors, but also mystery writers, science fiction writers, and a wide range of others that I didn't even realize had parts of their writing that were so passionate about the earth. Many authors I knew already, but was glad to read again (and will go to look them up, to read them more completely) and others I did not know, and found the new exposure great. Each excerpt is introduced with a quick to read 'paragraph' putting the author's excerpt into context (normally I find these boring, but here they were fairly interesting), and larger introductions, prose in themselves, for each chapter, and the major sections. With over one hundred authors represented here, in well organized categories, I've enjoyed this as bedtime reading.

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