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Yearning for the Land: A Search for the Importance of Place

3.47  ·  Rating Details ·  19 Ratings  ·  4 Reviews
What does landscape mean to us? How does it shape our sense of “rootedness” to place and connection to community? Can that sense and that connection enrich us in the same manner as having knowledge of our familial lineage? Landscape historian John Warfield Simpson sets out to answer these questions by following the journey of the great conservationist John Muir from his ho ...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published September 24th 2002 by Pantheon
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Danny Daley
I bought this book at the Muir woods north of San Francisco. I am an American who, at the time, was deeply struggling with my American identity. I also happened to be two weeks away from moving to Scotland at that exact moment. I took my family to the Muir woods for a final American vacation before the move, and here it was, a book written by an American, about a struggle with his identity in his own land, who looked for the meaning of homeland in Scotland, literally, just miles away from where ...more
Beth
Jun 27, 2015 Beth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
This book is a slow read... and I mean that in the best possible way. The author moves back and forth between the two settings of John Muir's childhood -- East Lothian, Scotland, and Marquette County, Wisconsin -- in search of how Muir's connection to the landscape evolved.

Surprisingly, though, the author keeps finding new perspectives from which to view these two places. In the New World, he interviews people from the Ho-Chunk nation, a native tribe that lived in Wisconsin before European settl
...more
Julie
Jul 29, 2011 Julie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: uk-biography
at first i got bogged down in this book. really liked it then started skimming. the sections of interviews in wisconsin just went on too long for me. i enjoyed the information about john muir. what i really enjoyed was the end of the book when the author went to scotland and lived there for a short while. that part was what i was really looking for throughout the rest of the book, and made me glad that i had read it.
Paul
Nov 23, 2008 Paul rated it liked it
Can be read in any number of ways -- an homage to John Muir, a survey of land use in Scotland versus the United States, an effort to understand the Native American view of the land, a stab at a memoir, and a search for roots, and rootedness. Held together by a reverence toward 'place' in shaping human lives. Serious but not solemn.
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