Nature and Culture
Paperback ISBN: 1861899173
For years, tourists have trekked across cracked rock at Hawaii's Kilauea volcano to witness the awe-inspiring sight of creeping lava and its devastating effects on the landscape. In 2010, Eyjafjallajökull erupted in Iceland, stranding travelers as a cloud of ash covered western and northern Europe, causing the largest disruption of air travel since World War II. And just a few months later, Mount Merapi blew in Indonesia, killing over 350 people and displacing over 350,000 others, awakening people once more to the dangerous potential of these sleeping giants. Though today largely dormant, volcanoes continue to erupt across the world, reminding us of their sheer physical power. In Volcano, James Hamilton explores the cultural history generated by the violence and terrifying beauty of volcanoes. He describes the reverberations of early eruptions of Vesuvius and Etna in Greek and Roman myth. He also examines the depiction of volcanoes in art—from the earliest known wall painting of an erupting volcano in 6200 BCE to the distinctive colors of Andy Warhol and Michael Sandle's exploding mountains. Surveying a number of twenty-first-century works, Hamilton shows that volcanoes continue to influence the artistic imagination. Combining established figures such as Joseph Wright and J. M. W. Turner with previously unseen perspectives, this richly illustrated book will appeal to anyone interested in science as well as the cultural impact of these spectacular natural features.
The Collection That Shaped the Theory of Evolution
Paperback ISBN: 158834617x
Reveals how Darwin's study of fossils shaped his scientific thinking and led to his development of the theory of evolution. Darwin's Fossils is an accessible account of Darwin's pioneering work on fossils, his adventures in South America, and his relationship with the scientific establishment. While Darwin's research on Galápagos finches is celebrated, his work on fossils is less well known. Yet he was the first to collect the remains of giant extinct South American mammals; he worked out how coral reefs and atolls formed; he excavated and explained marine fossils high in the Andes; and he discovered a fossil forest that now bears his name. All of this research was fundamental in leading Darwin to develop his revolutionary theory of evolution. This richly illustrated book brings Darwin's fossils, many of which survive in museums and institutions around the world, together for the first time. Including new photography of many of the fossils--which in recent years have enjoyed a surge of scientific interest--as well as superb line drawings produced in the nineteenth century and newly commissioned artists' reconstructions of the extinct animals as they are understood today, Darwin's Fossils reveals how Darwin's discoveries played a crucial role in the development of his groundbreaking ideas.
Agates of Lake Superior
Stunning Varieties and How They Are Formed
Hardcover ISBN: 159193303x
The authors know agates, and this definitive book was 30 years in the making! Each type of the regionís agates is discussed in-depth, with details ranging from characteristics and formation to distribution and rarity. Photos accompany each write-up.
The Big Ones
How Natural Disasters Have Shaped Us (and What We Can Do About Them)
Hardcover ISBN: 0385542704
By the world-renowned seismologist, a riveting history of natural disasters, their impact on our culture, and new ways of thinking about the ones to come Earthquakes, floods, tsunamis, hurricanes, volcanoes--they stem from the same forces that give our planet life. Earthquakes give us natural springs; volcanoes produce fertile soil. It is only when these forces exceed our ability to withstand them that they become disasters. Together they have shaped our cities and their architecture; elevated leaders and toppled governments; influenced the way we think, feel, fight, unite, and pray. The history of natural disasters is a history of ourselves. In The Big Ones, leading seismologist Dr. Lucy Jones offers a bracing look at some of the world's greatest natural disasters, whose reverberations we continue to feel today. At Pompeii, Jones explores how a volcanic eruption in the first century AD challenged prevailing views of religion. She examines the California floods of 1862 and the limits of human memory. And she probes more recent events--such as the Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004 and the American hurricanes of 2017--to illustrate the potential for globalization to humanize and heal. With population in hazardous regions growing and temperatures around the world rising, the impacts of natural disasters are greater than ever before. The Big Ones is more than just a work of history or science; it is a call to action. Natural hazards are inevitable; human catastrophes are not. With this energizing and exhaustively researched book, Dr. Jones offers a look at our past, readying us to face down the Big Ones in our future.
Great Moments in the History of Hard, Cold Water
Hardcover ISBN: 0873516281
"Put your mittens on; you'll freeze to death!" admonish the world's grandmothers as the temperature plummets. No doubt the Arctic explorers--today in their GORE-TEX, historically in their woolens--needed no such instruction. Icy climes bring with them the dangers of frostbite, but also the poetic beauty of glaciers and ice shelves, of ice palaces and aurora borealis. Karal Ann Marling explores these topics and more as she considers the history of "hard, cold water." What better place to start than with dessert? The pleasure of ice cream on a hot day has been known since the sixteenth century, although it wasn't until a few hundred years later that reliable refrigeration made the treat readily available. Marling expands her icy explorations to the realm of fiction--the ice crossing in Uncle Tom's Cabin, the frozen wasteland of Frankenstein--and to the movies and Broadway. Cities vie for tourists by building shimmering ice palaces to celebrate winter; explorers compete to reach the poles, and not all live to tell the story. The study of ice by a true aficionado yields fascinating insights and may just inspire readers to embrace winter-or to make their way to the nearest ice cream shop. Karal Ann Marling is a professor emerita of art history and American studies at the University of Minnesota. She is the author, most recently, of Merry Christmas!: Celebrating America's Greatest Holiday and Illusions of Eden: Visions of the American Heartland.
Discovering the Mammoth
A Tale of Giants, Unicorns, Ivory, and the Birth of a New Science
Hardcover ISBN: 1681774240
What exactly is a mammoth? John Mckay brings to life the fascinating saga of solving the mystery of this ancient being that once roamed the north country has dominated our collective imagination ever since.
The Day the World Exploded, August 27, 1883
Paperback ISBN: 006093736x
Considers the global impact of the 1883 eruption of the Krakatoa volcano, documenting the resulting immense tsunami that killed some 40,000 people, its impact on the weather for several years, and its role in anti-Western Islamic fundamentalism. Reader's Guide available. Reprint. 200,000 first printing.