The Testaments out now
The Arid Lands: History, Power, Knowledge - History for a Sustainable Future (Hardback)
  • The Arid Lands: History, Power, Knowledge - History for a Sustainable Future (Hardback)
zoom

The Arid Lands: History, Power, Knowledge - History for a Sustainable Future (Hardback)

(author)
£27.00
Hardback 296 Pages / Published: 25/03/2016
  • We can order this

Usually dispatched within 1 week

  • This item has been added to your basket
An argument that the perception of arid lands as wastelands is politically motivated and that these landscapes are variable, biodiverse ecosystems, whose inhabitants must be empowered. Deserts are commonly imagined as barren, defiled, worthless places, wastelands in need of development. This understanding has fueled extensive anti-desertification efforts-a multimillion-dollar global campaign driven by perceptions of a looming crisis. In this book, Diana Davis argues that estimates of desertification have been significantly exaggerated and that deserts and drylands-which constitute about 41% of the earth's landmass-are actually resilient and biodiverse environments in which a great many indigenous people have long lived sustainably. Meanwhile, contemporary arid lands development programs and anti-desertification efforts have met with little success. As Davis explains, these environments are not governed by the equilibrium ecological dynamics that apply in most other regions. Davis shows that our notion of the arid lands as wastelands derives largely from politically motivated Anglo-European colonial assumptions that these regions had been laid waste by "traditional" uses of the land. Unfortunately, such assumptions still frequently inform policy. Drawing on political ecology and environmental history, Davis traces changes in our understanding of deserts, from the benign views of the classical era to Christian associations of the desert with sinful activities to later (neo)colonial assumptions of destruction. She further explains how our thinking about deserts is problematically related to our conceptions of forests and desiccation. Davis concludes that a new understanding of the arid lands as healthy, natural, but variable ecosystems that do not necessarily need improvement or development will facilitate a more sustainable future for the world's magnificent drylands.

Publisher: MIT Press Ltd
ISBN: 9780262034524
Number of pages: 296
Weight: 454 g
Dimensions: 203 x 137 x 24 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
This book is a call for a new understanding of arid lands, their history, their future, and their possibilities. Turns out deserts aren't such a dry subject after all. -Landscape Architecture

You may also be interested in...

Forests: A Very Short Introduction
Added to basket
Lake District Mountain Landscape
Added to basket
Deserts: A Very Short Introduction
Added to basket
Lake District Mountain Landforms
Added to basket
The Seaside Year
Added to basket
Improved Grassland Management
Added to basket
Solent & Island Tidal Streams
Added to basket
Suffolk's Defended Shore
Added to basket
A Dictionary of Geography
Added to basket
Lincoln and District 1898
Added to basket
£3.00
Sheet map, folded
Coast to Coast East XT40: East
Added to basket

Please sign in to write a review

Your review has been submitted successfully.