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Savage Dreams: A Journey into the Landscape Wars of the American West
     

Savage Dreams: A Journey into the Landscape Wars of the American West

by Rebecca Solnit
 
Behind the scenic beauty of the American West is a bloody history of conquest, conflict, and exploitation. Part travelogue, part history, and part literary meditation on the landscape, this book describes in convincing detail how this violent heritage has left the region with many unresolved problems and much ongoing suffering.

Overview

Behind the scenic beauty of the American West is a bloody history of conquest, conflict, and exploitation. Part travelogue, part history, and part literary meditation on the landscape, this book describes in convincing detail how this violent heritage has left the region with many unresolved problems and much ongoing suffering.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Since 1951, the U.S. has set off more than 900 nuclear explosions at the Nevada Test Site, and recently Yucca Mountain in the state was chosen as a major radioactive waste dump. According to Solnit, an art historian, environmentalist and antinuclear activist, the federal government is hell-bent on rendering public and Shoshone lands ``useless for everyone for all time.'' She explores two federally managed landscapes: the Nevada Test Site, which she characterizes as Armageddon, and California's Yosemite National Park, which she links to Eden. She depicts the latter in its change from native stronghold to war zone during the 19th-century annihilation of Indians to today's tourist attraction. Flinging her net wide, Solnit evokes powerful images of destruction and conquest as she explores governmental abuses in the region. (Oct.)
Booknews
Solnit (art history, San Francisco Art Institute) offers a first- person account of her expeditions in California and Nevada, focusing on the politics and history of the Nevada Test Site and Yosemite National Park. She explores the connections between the political history of the West and its cultural history, which has been obscured by the reality of the violent past. Solnit weaves the story of the Danns, two Western Shoshone sisters who have fought the US government in an effort to reclaim their ancestral lands, into her narrative. Lacks an index. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780679766605
Publisher:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
10/31/1995
Pages:
416
Product dimensions:
5.21(w) x 7.97(h) x 0.85(d)

Meet the Author


Rebecca Solnit is the author of A Book of Migrations: Some Passages in Ireland (1997), among other books. She lives in San Francisco. In 2003, she was awarded the Lannan Literary Award for Nonfiction.

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