A Sand County Almanac and Sketches Here and There
First published in 1949 A Sand County Almanac combines some of the finest nature writing since Thoreau with an outspoken and highly ethical regard for America's relationship to the land.
Written with an unparalleled understanding of the ways of nature, the book includes a section on the monthly changes of the Wisconsin countryside; another part that gathers informal pieces
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A Sand County Almanac
--The Geese Return
--Come High Water
--Back from the Argentine
--The Alder Fork
--The Green Pasture
--The Choral Copse
--If I Were the Wind
--A Mighty Fortress
--Pines above the Snow
Sketches Here and There
--The Sand Co ...more
Our ability to perceive quality in nature begins, as in art, with the pretty. It expands through successive stages of the beautiful to values as yet uncaptured by language. The quality of cranes lies, I think, in this higher gamut, as yet beyond the reach of words.
There is nothing, nothing, beyond Aldo Leopold's reach of words. I've read, oh, sixty or seventy books so far this year - some inventive, some incisiv ...more
It's a little too cold for reading outside today but the sun is ...more
It was actually published shortly after the author died of a heart attack, in 1949. Leopold's life was cut far too short, and I can't help but wonder how much further America's conservation efforts might have evolved in the past 50 years had he lived longer. Many of his observations and warnings from the early part of the 1900s still ring true today. In that respect, this book wa ...more
So simple and so direct that one was struck by how obvious these statements are, and yet these words seemed like a newly discovered insight, especially as they came logically after a series of vivid expositions on nature and natural history. Nature is beautiful and if we preserve it, we truly deserve it. If we destroy it, we are killjoys. Simple as that.
A f ...more
a sand county almanac is roundly acknowledged as one of the most seminal titles in the nature/conservation/environmental writing genre, and like all great books it remains imperatively relative ...more
On the one hand, there is incredible value to be gained from the author's keen sense of observation. The first set of essays, the Sand County Almanac, takes us through a year of observing nature at work on Leopold's farm. He discovers firsthand how certain plants fare better when collocated. He bands chickadees and later discovers the bands in the pellets of a screech owl. He gains broad insights from small things that most of us pass by every day without consid ...more
Written from an experiential perspective, with a style that is often poetic, the main message of A Sand County Almanac is that the land is not there to serve us, but that we need to live in community with the land. Community without land is empty, so by threatening the land we are threatening community. The land, th ...more
Much of Sand County informs the reader of the conditions of North American wild land, and the causes of its deterioration. Like others of his genre, however, his idealism distorts and clouds a scientific approach at the problems, and methods to stop and reverse environmental damage. For example, on page 51 he proposes the idea that there should be “idle” stri ...more
A Sand County Almanac made a significant impression on me the moment I read these words in the Foreword:
… our bigger-and-better society is now like a hypochondriac, so obsessed with its own economic health as to have lost the capacity to remain healthy.
These words were true in 1948, and, sadly, they are still true to a large ex ...more