American Space American Place: Geographies of the by John Agnew, Jonathan M. Smith PDF

By John Agnew, Jonathan M. Smith

ISBN-10: 0585441871

ISBN-13: 9780585441870

ISBN-10: 074861317X

ISBN-13: 9780748613175

First released in 2002. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa corporation.

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Extra resources for American Space American Place: Geographies of the Contemporary United States

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At the gates of the forest, [he wrote] the surprised man of the world is forced to leave his cit y estimates of great and small, wise and 34 Environmental ideals and realities foolish. The knapsack of custom falls off his back with the first step he takes into these precincts. This did not mean that one should necessarily “camp out and eat roots,” for we are “men instead of woodchucks,” but that we should discern in the objects of nature “a present sanit y to expose and cure the insanit y of men” (Emerson 1940: 406, 414, 420).

Ironically, this symbol of heroic nature was in the twentieth century surrounded by an industrial landscape and the symbol of abused nature, the toxic waste site at Love Canal, became its next door neighbor. ) sense of the word: they inspired a feeling of awe. As Charles Dickens described his first impression of Niagara Falls in 1842: “I . . ” “I felt how near to my creator I was standing,” he wrote, and this proximit y aroused in him “peace of mind, tranquillit y, calm recollections of the Dead, great thoughts of Eternal Rest and Happiness” (Dickens 1985: 182).

Nature, particularly when distilled into the form of a natural icon, is a sacrament of which the people must be permitted to partake. This explains why so many natural icons have been preserved as public parks. As Abraham Lincoln The place of nature 39 wrote when he transferred the Yosemite Valley to the State of California in 1864, this spectacular place, which along with the nearby Calveras Grove had already become an icon of American nature, was to be forever preserved for “public use, resort and recreation” (Schama 1995: 185–201; Huth 1957: 148).

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American Space American Place: Geographies of the Contemporary United States by John Agnew, Jonathan M. Smith


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