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Paperback $40.00 ISBN: 9781559633550 Published October 2003


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Reconstructing Conservation

Finding Common Ground

 Reconstructing Conservation
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Edited by Ben A. Minteer and Robert E. Manning

334 pages | 6 x 9

In the 1990s, influenced by the deconstructionist movement in literary theory and trends toward revisionist history, a cadre of academics and historians led by William Cronon began raising provocative questions about ideas of wilderness and the commitments and strategies of the contemporary environmental movement. While these critiques challenged some cherished and widely held beliefs -- and raised the hackles of many in the environmental community -- they also stimulated an important and potentially transformative debate about the conceptual foundations of environmentalism.

Reconstructing Conservation makes a vital contribution to that debate, bringing together 23 leading scholars and practitioners -- including J. Baird Callicott, Susan Flader, Richard Judd, Curt Meine, Bryan Norton, and Paul B. Thompson -- to examine the classical conservation tradition and its value to contemporary environmentalism. Focusing not just on the tensions that have marked the deconstructivist debate over wilderness and environmentalism, the book represents a larger and ultimately more constructive and hopeful discussion over the proper course of future conservation scholarship and action.

Essays provide a fresh look at conservation icons such as George Perkins Marsh and Aldo Leopold, as well as the contributions of lesser-known figures including Lewis Mumford, Benton MacKaye, and Scott Nearing. Represented are a wealth of diverse perspectives, addressing such topics as wilderness and protected areas, cultural landscapes, rural/agrarian landscapes, urban/built environments, and multiple points on the geographic map. Contributors offer enthusiastic endorsements of pluralism in conservation values and goals along with cautionary tales about the dangers of fragmentation and atomism. The final chapter brings together the major insights, arguments, and proposals contained in the individual contributions, synthesizing them into a dozen broad-ranging principles designed to guide the study and practice of conservation.

Reconstructing Conservation assesses the meaning and relevance of our conservation inheritance in the 21st century, and represents a conceptually integrated vision for reconsidering conservation thought and practice to meet the needs and circumstances of a new, post-deconstructivist era.

Foreword xi
Part I. Introduction 1
1. Conservation: From Deconstruction to Reconstruction 3
Ben A. Minteer and Robert E. Manning
Part II. Nature and Culture Reconsidered 17
2. Writing Environmental History from East to West 19
Richard W. Judd
3. The Nature of History Preserved; or, The Trouble with
Green Bridges 33
Robert McCullough
4. Going Native: Second Thoughts on Restoration 43
Jan E. Dizard
5. Conservation and Culture, Genuine and Spurious 57
Luis A. Vivanco
Part III. Reweaving the Tradition 75
6. Expanding the Conservation Tradition: The Agrarian Vision 77
Paul B. Thompson
7. Regional Planning as Pragmatic Conservationism 93
Ben A. Minteer
8. Building Conservation on the Land: Aldo Leopold and
the Tensions of Professionalism and Citizenship 115
Susan Flader
9. Scott Nearing and the American Conservation Tradition 133
Bob Pepperman Taylor
10. Conservation and the Four Faces of Resistance 145
Eric T. Freyfogle
11. Conservation and the Progressive Movement:
Growing from the Radical Center 165
Curt Meine
Part IV. New Methods and Models 185
12. Conservation: Moral Crusade or Environmental
Public Policy? 187
Bryan Norton
13. Social Climate Change: A Sociology of Environmental
Philosophy 207
Robert E. Manning
14. Reconstructing Conservation in an Age of Limits:
An Ecological Economics Perspective 223
David N. Bengston and David C. Iverson
15. The Implication of the “Shifting Paradigm” in Ecology for
Paradigm Shifts in the Philosophy of Conservation 239
J. Baird Callicott
16. An Integrative Model for Landscape-Scale Conservation
in the Twenty-First Century 263
Stephen C. Trombulak
Part V. Reconstructing Conservation Practice:
Community and the Future of Conservation
Stewardship 277
17. Community Values in Conservation 279
Patricia A. Stokowski
18. Stewardship and Protected Areas in a Global Context:
Coping with Change and Fostering Civil Society 297
Brent Mitchell and Jessica Brown
19. Reinventing Conservation: A Practitioner’s View 313
Rolf Diamant, J. Glenn Eugster, and Nora J. Mitchell
20. Conservation Stewardship: Legacies from Vermont’s Marsh 327
David Lowenthal
Part VI. Conclusion 333
21. Finding Common Ground: Emerging Principles for
a Reconstructed Conservation 335
Ben A. Minteer and Robert E. Manning
Notes 351
About the Contributors 401
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