The Star Thrower

The Star Thrower

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Overview

A collection of the author’s favorite essays and poems. This volume includes selections that span Eiseley’s entire writing career and provide a sampling of the author as naturalist, poet, scientist, and humanist. “Loren Eiseley’s work changed my life” (Ray Bradbury). Introduction by W. H. Auden.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780156849098
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date: 09/06/2011
Series: Harvest Book Series
Edition description: First Edition
Pages: 322
Sales rank: 623,545
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.80(d)
Lexile: 1220L (what's this?)

Table of Contents

Editor's Preface 11(15)
Introduction: Concerning the Unpredictable 15(12)
I NATURE AND AUTOBIOGRAPHY
The Judgment of the Birds
27(10)
The Long Loneliness
37(8)
Man the Firemaker
45(8)
The Innocent Fox
53(13)
How Flowers Changed the World
66(10)
The Ghostly Guardian
76(7)
The Bird and the Machine
83(9)
The Fire Apes
92(4)
Easter: The Isle of Faces
96(10)
The Dance of the Frogs
106(10)
The Hidden Teacher
116(13)
The Fifth Planet
129(10)
The Last Neanderthal
139(16)
II EARLY POEMS
The Spider
155(1)
Tasting the Mountain Spring
156(1)
Things Will Go
157(1)
Leaving September
158(1)
Nocturne in Silver
159(1)
Winter Sign
160(1)
October Has the Heart
161(1)
Dusk Interval
162(2)
Let the Red Fox Run
164(1)
The Fishers
165(4)
III SCIENCE AND HUMANISM
The Star Thrower
169(17)
Science and the Sense of the Holy
186(16)
The Winter of Man
202(5)
Man Against the Universe
207(15)
Thoreau's Vision of the Natural World
222(13)
Walden: Thoreau's Unfinished Business
235(16)
The Lethal Factor
251(16)
The Illusion of the Two Cultures
267(13)
How Natural Is "Natural"?
280(17)
The Inner Galaxy
297(16)
Honors and Awards 313(4)
Acknowledgments 317

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The Star Thrower 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
bragan on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A collection of essays (along with a few poems) by anthropologist and naturalist Loren Eiseley, published in 1978, a year after his death. Some of the essays deal with anthropology or evolutionary science, but most of them are more philosophical or feature personal musings about his encounters with nature. There are also a couple discussing the life and writings of Thoreau.I have strong memories of reading Eiseley sometime in my teenage years, including a few of the essays in this collection, and being greatly affected by the beauty and depth of his writing, so I was very much looking forward to revisiting his work. Alas, sometimes we really should not reread the things that moved us when we were teens.Don't get me wrong. Eiseley's writing is still beautiful, heartfelt, and poetic. And there are moments of wonder and insight to be found here, even if they're not quite as I remembered them. But his work is permeated by an ambiguous, vaguely religious sort of mysticism that I don't find particularly congenial these days and often based on premises I don't necessarily buy into, even when I agree with him on specifics. Much of his writing features an uneasy sense of the perceived conflict between reductionist science and what one might call a more spiritual view of nature; whereas I tend to regard that as a false conflict and a false dichotomy. Also, several of the essays do feel a bit dated, sometimes factually -- one piece revolves around the now-disputed cold-bloodedness of dinosaurs -- but more often linguistically. It is unpleasantly disconcerting, in the 21st century, to see an anthropologist casually referring to tribal peoples as "savages."I have no doubt that many people are likely to find Eiseley's lyrical writing still speaks to them as much as it did to me two decades ago. But I can't help feeling a little disappointed.As for the rating... Man, this is a hard one. Putting it in the three-star range seems to devalue the thoughtfulness, sincerity, and lovely prose to be found in this collection, but to give it four stars would misrepresent my personal reaction to it. Well, call it an even more subjective than usual 3.5/5, I guess.
T42 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book was my introduction to Loren Eiselely. Having read it just out of high school, it gave me a new lens through which to view the world.
snowcat More than 1 year ago
Best book for the sincere search for knowledge I've read since " A Sand County Almanac" by Aldo Leopold. A scientific novel for more advance readers interested in a scientists search and discovery for the meaning of life and how we should behave on this planet.