Still the Same Hawk: Reflections on Nature and New York

Overview

A groundbreaking new book, Still the Same Hawk: Reflections on Nature and New York brings into conversation diverse and intriguing perspectives on the relationship between nature and America's most prominent city. The volume's title derives from a telling observation in Robert Sullivan's contribution that considers how a hawk in the city is perceived so much differently from a hawk in the countryside.

Yet it's still the same hawk.

How can a ...

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Still the Same Hawk: Reflections on Nature and New York

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Overview

A groundbreaking new book, Still the Same Hawk: Reflections on Nature and New York brings into conversation diverse and intriguing perspectives on the relationship between nature and America's most prominent city. The volume's title derives from a telling observation in Robert Sullivan's contribution that considers how a hawk in the city is perceived so much differently from a hawk in the countryside.

Yet it's still the same hawk.

How can a hawk nesting above Fifth Avenue become a citywide phenomenon? Or a sudden butterfly migration at Coney Island energize the community? Why does the presence of a community garden or an empty lot ripple so differently through the surrounding neighborhood? Is the city an oasis or a desert for biodiversity? Why does nature even matter to New Yorkers, who choose to live in the concrete jungle?

Still the Same Hawk examines these questions with a rich mix of creative nonfiction that ranges from analytical to anecdotal and humorous. John Waldman's sharp, well-crafted introduction presenting dualism as the defining quality of urban nature is followed by compelling contributions from Besty McCully, Christopher Meier, Tony Hiss, Kelly McMasters, Dara Ross, William Kornblum, Phillip Lopate, David Rosane, Robert Sullivan, Anne Matthews, Devin Zuber, and Frederick Buell. Together these pieces capture a wide range of viewpoints, including the myriad and shifting ways New Yorkers experience and consider the outdoors, the historical role of nature in shaping New York's development, what natural attributes contribute to New York's regional identity, the many environmental tradeoffs made by urbanization, and even nature's dark side where "urban legends" flourish.

Still the Same Hawk intermingles elements of natural history, urban ecology, and environmental politics, providing fresh insights into nature and the urban environment on one of the world's great stages for the clash of these seemingly disparate realms—New York City.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Still the Same Hawk is an eclectic mix of writing ranging from solid academic prose to highly personalized writing with tones ranging from folksy to almost urban contemporary."-Mark Botton, Fordham University

". . .this collection is worth dipping into. . ." -New York Historical Society

". . . A collection of 11 new essays of creative nonfiction by such noted naturalists and writers as Tony Hiss, William Kornblum, Phillip Lopate, Anne Matthews, and Robert Sullivan" -Record Pilot (NYC Market Area)

"John has gathered some of the best thinkers and most interesting voices in the city for this eclectic volume of essays on the under-appreciated New York City environment. Recommended for eco-hipsters in Brooklyn, nature lovers in the Bronx, bird watchers in Manhattan, conservationists in Queens, gardeners in Staten Island and everyone else who loves New York and wants to see it last." -Eric Sanderson, Wildlife Conservation Society

"There are other publications that deal with urban ecology, but no other work looks at one -place, a very urban place, and helps the reader to understand all facets of how people connect to or find nature in that city. . . highly recommended." -Choice

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780823249893
  • Publisher: Fordham University Press
  • Publication date: 11/1/2012
  • Pages: 160
  • Sales rank: 961,209
  • Product dimensions: 8.80 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

John Waldman is Professor of Biology at Queens College, City University of New York. He is recipient of the New York Society Library Award in Natural History and the Norcross Wildlife Conservation Award and is an occasional contributor to the New York Times and other periodicals.

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction: Bare Nature in the Naked City
John Waldman

2. Monarchs of the Urban Mind
Betsy McCully

3. Welcome to the H2O Region—Your Second Address!
Christopher Meier and Tony Hiss

3. Public Place, Brooklyn
Kelly McMasters

4. Corner Garden
Dara Ross

5. A Land Ethic for the City
William Kornblum

6. Can Naturalists and Urbanists Find Happiness Together?
Phillip Lopate

7. Can You Eat in Soup? Nine Million Ways to Look at a Raccoon—Land an Apple
David Rosane

8. The Dark Side; or, My Time Spent in the Nature That People Would Rather Not Think About
Robert Sullivan

9. The Futures of New York
Anne Matthews

10. Imagination, Beauty, and the Urban Land Ethic: Teaching Environmental Literature in New York City
Devin Zuber

11. Nature in New York: A Brief Cultural History
Frederick Buell

List of Contributors

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