Read Light at the Edge of the World: A Journey Through the Realm of Vanishing Cultures by Wade Davis Free Online
Book Title: Light at the Edge of the World: A Journey Through the Realm of Vanishing Cultures|
The author of the book: Wade Davis
ISBN 13: 9780747557548
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 33.95 MB
City - Country: No data
Edition: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Date of issue: December 3rd 2001
Loaded: 1991 times
Reader ratings: 7.1
Read full description of the books:
Davis is a compelling writer, and reading this book did make me want to go to more cool places and do more cool things, but i never feel like i ended up going where he was trying to take me. It seemed like he was at his most effective when speaking in broad generalities (It's bad when the government destroys the ecological milieu of a given culture! People with good intentions can do bad things!), but it seemed like when he dealt with very specific cases (Person X had effect Y on culture Z) he presented accounts of the interactions that weren't particularly fair, or that posited a strict outside-inside binary that didn't allow for differing opinions about the contact by those inside the culture under consideration (or that suggested, despite his claim of the importance of self-determinism in cultural adaptation, that those who chose to embrace the contact and leave behind a more traditional lifestyle had made a less valid decision), or that didn't allow for the outside/globalized culture contacting the indigenous culture to consist of differing, mutually antagonistic groups. Finally, i understand the natural limitations that present to a male anthropologist, but i would very much have liked to have heard more female voices--it seemed likely that all (or, at the very least, most) of the cultures discussed were very much male-dominated. It seems that hearing some female voices commenting on the loss of a male-dominated culture would present a different reading experience from hearing a bunch of male voices bemoaning the loss of a male-dominated culture. And hey, look, i just wrote a review that makes me look like an ethnocentric indigenous culture-hater. Sigh.
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Read information about the authorEdmund Wade Davis has been described as "a rare combination of scientist, scholar, poet, and passionate defender of all of life's diversity."
An ethnographer, writer, photographer, and filmmaker, he holds degrees in anthropology and biology and received his Ph.D. in ethnobotany, all from Harvard University. Mostly through the Harvard Botanical Museum, he spent more than three years in the Amazon and Andes as a plant explorer, living among 15 indigenous groups in eight Latin American nations while making some 6,000 botanical collections. His work later took him to Haiti to investigate folk preparations implicated in the creation of zombies, an assignment that led to his writing Passage of Darkness (1988) and The Serpent and the Rainbow (1986), an international best seller that appeared in ten languages and was later released by Universal as a motion picture.
His other books include Penan: Voice for the Borneo Rain Forest (1990), Shadows in the Sun (1993), Nomads of the Dawn (1995), The Clouded Leopard (1998), Rainforest (1998), Light at the Edge of the World (2001), The Lost Amazon (2004), Grand Canyon (2008), Book of Peoples of the World (ed. 2008), and One River (1996), which was nominated for the 1997 Governor General's Literary Award for Nonfiction. Into the Silence, an epic history of World War I and the early British efforts to summit Everest, was published in October, 2011. Sheets of Distant Rain will follow.
Davis is the recipient of numerous awards, including the 2002 Lowell Thomas Medal (The Explorers Club) and the 2002 Lannan Foundation prize for literary nonfiction. In 2004 he was made an honorary member of the Explorers Club, one of just 20 in the hundred-year history of the club. In recent years his work has taken him to East Africa, Borneo, Nepal, Peru, Polynesia, Tibet, Mali, Benin, Togo, New Guinea, Vanuatu, and the high Arctic of Nunavut and Greenland.
A native of British Columbia, Davis, a licensed river guide, has worked as park ranger and forestry engineer and conducted ethnographic fieldwork among several indigenous societies of northern Canada. He has published 150 scientific and popular articles on subjects ranging from Haitian vodoun and Amazonian myth and religion to the global biodiversity crisis, the traditional use of psychotropic drugs, and the ethnobotany of South American Indians.
Davis has written for National Geographic, Newsweek, Premiere, Outside, Omni, Harpers, Fortune, Men's Journal, Condé Nast Traveler, Natural History, Utne Reader, National Geographic Traveler, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Globe and Mail, and several other international publications.
His photographs have been featured in a number of exhibits and have been widely published, appearing in some 20 books and more than 80 magazines, journals, and newspapers. His research has been the subject of more than 700 media reports and interviews in Europe, North and South America, and the Far East, and has inspired numerous documentary films as well as three episodes of the television series The X Files.
A professional speaker for nearly 20 years, Davis has lectured at the National Geographic Society, American Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, and California Academy of Sciences, as well as many other museums and some 200 universities, including Harvard, MIT, Oxford, Yale, and Stanford. He has spoken at the Aspen Institute, Bohemian Grove, Young President’s Organization, and TED Conference. His corporate clients have included Microsoft, Shell, Hallmark, Bank of Nova Scotia, MacKenzie Financials, Healthcare Association of Southern California, National Science Teachers Association, and many others.
An honorary research associate of the Institute of Economic Botany of the New York Botanical Garden, he is a fellow of the Linnean Society, the Explorers Club, and the Royal Geographical Society.
(Source: National Geographic)