[CATEGORIES: Literature, Lapham’s Quarterly, Reading, Book Review, Photography]
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There are 3 main sections in Voices in Time. This issue they are:
Garden of Earthly Delights
Lewis Lapham notes in his Preamble: “The contributors to the pages in “Howling Wilderness” discover in nature the colossal power that commands worship and instills fear…”.
Some of my favorite side-quotes this section:
“A wee child toddling in a wonder world, I prefer to their dogma my excursions into the natural gardens where the voice of the Great Spirit is heard in the twittering of birds, the rippling of might waters, and the sweet breathing of flowers. If this is Paganism, then at present, at least, I am a Pagan.” –Zitkala-Sa, 1902 (p. 20)
“A lawn is nature under totalitarian rule.” –Michael Pollan, 1991 (p. 30)
“A tree’s a tree. How many more do you need to look at?” –Ronald Reagan, 1965 (p. 30) [Taken out of context, to be fair.–JH]
“Nature, to be commanded, must be obeyed.” –Sir Francis Bacon, 1620 (p. 38)
“I am pessimistic about the human race because it is too ingenious for its own good. Our approach to nature is to beat if into submission. We would stand a better chance of survival if we accommodated ourselves to this planet and viewed it appreciatively instead of skeptically and dictatorially.” –E.B. White (p. 44) [Wrote Charlotte’s Web and Stuart Little. See Wiki.]
[I personally am of the mind that nature is to be used, but not used up. –JH]
“If a man walks in the woods for love of them half of each day, he is in danger of being regarded as a loafer. But if he spends his days as a speculator, shearing off those woods and making the earth bald before her time, he is deemed an industrious and enterprising citizen.” –Henry David Thoreau, 1853 (p. 55)
Small side-bar, noteworthy on perspectives about ‘wild’:
1933 / South Dakota
Point of Order
“We did not think of the great open plains, the beautiful rolling hills, and winding streams with tangled growth as “wild.” Only to the white man was nature a “wilderness” and only to him was the land “infested” with “wild” animals and “savage” people. To us it was tame. Earth was bountiful, and we were surrounded with the blessings of the Great Mystery. Not until the hairy man from the East came, and with brutal frenzy heaped injustices upon us and the families we loved, was it “wild” for us. When the very animals of the forest began fleeing from his approach, then it was for us that the “Wild West” began.”
Chief Luther Standing Bear,from Land of the Spotted Eagle. Standing Bear joined Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show in 1902 at the age of thirty-four, performed a horseback act for King Edward VII in England, and subsequently appeared in early Hollywood westerns, among them White Oakand Union Pacific.
[Speaking of Buffalo Bill see my TripAdvisor review of my recent visit to the Lookout Mt. museum.
Contrast Point of Order with this excerpt from the 1964 Wilderness Act:
“A wilderness, in contrast with those areas where man and his own works dominate the landscape, is hereby recognized as an area where the earth and its community of life are untrammeled by man, where man himself is a visitor who does not remain.” (p. 37)
To be continued…