I don't fish and I don't eat fish. I still found this book to be a fascinating journey through science, history, and culture with regards to salmon, bI don't fish and I don't eat fish. I still found this book to be a fascinating journey through science, history, and culture with regards to salmon, bass, tuna, and cod. Greenberg also discusses more sustainable options that are a more appropriate fit for aquaculture (without serious ecological damage or extreme measures in breeding science) such as barramundi, tilapia, tra, and kahala.
At the end of the book, he gives a list of action steps to retain our last wild foods and repair the ecosystems they depend on, as well as guidelines for fish for consumption. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in creating a more balanced and sustainable relationship with our environment and our food. ...more
I thought this book was a wonderful introduction to systems thinking. Also, this book is not a difficult read. Terms are explained, and plenty of examI thought this book was a wonderful introduction to systems thinking. Also, this book is not a difficult read. Terms are explained, and plenty of examples are given. So, even if you do not understand everything that follows, you CAN learn from this book.
Resilience thinking is characterized by a few key terms: diversity, thresholds, adaptive cycles, ecological variability, and modularity.
"Resilient social-ecological systems have the capacity to change as the world changes while still maintaining their functionality." (p. 12)
Resilience thinking remembers that we are of nature, and are not separate or outside of the system. Biodiversity, redundancy, ecological variability, and modularity of a natural system enhances the overall resilience of the system - it is less likely to fail when met with a disturbance.
What does this all mean? An oversimplified example: a fast moving waterway is able to push toxins, nitrogen, and phosphorus downstream from agricultural run-off. The waterway is the system in this case, and it is affected by the farmer (who is also part of the system). If the waterway is dammed for irrigation purposes, the resilience of the waterway is limited and eutrophication (phosphorous build-up leading to algae growth leading to less oxygen leading to less fish leading to less food for birds and other animals) can occur. It has crossed a "threshold" into a less desirable state when a new equilibrium is reached. The book goes on to describe "basins of attraction" and the equilibrium of a new "regime".
(It is easier for a system to cross a threshold into an undesirable state of being when diversity is decreased and ecological variability is limited.)
BUT THERE IS SO MUCH MORE.
I would recommend this book to 1.) anyone looking to keep the world we inhabit livable for future generations; 2.) anyone looking to live in balance with the natural world we are a part of; and 3.) anyone going into the sciences or land management....more
I was disappointed. I felt like the story didn't really start until about 62% or so into the book. The protagonist's current life is slightly boring,I was disappointed. I felt like the story didn't really start until about 62% or so into the book. The protagonist's current life is slightly boring, and his memories are only slightly more exciting. I finished the book, and realized that this first in the series was really all world-building. The actual storyline begins...and then oops, the book finished. You'll have to read the second installation. I'm not sure I will.
Bummer, because I really loved The Handmaid's Tale and The Penelopiad. ...more
I love Greek myths. I love retellings of Greek myths. Yet, this book went beyond a retelling and read like a biography interspersed with acts from a pI love Greek myths. I love retellings of Greek myths. Yet, this book went beyond a retelling and read like a biography interspersed with acts from a play. Penelope, the wife of Odysseus who waited twenty long years for her husband's return, tells her end of things from the Asphodel Fields. Twelve maids who worked for her interject here and there, as if to remind and to rebuke.
I'm off to read Atwood's "Oryx and Crake", now. I 've read "The Handmaid's Tale," loved it, and can't wait to get my hands on more of her work....more
Reading Judy Chicago's early memoir was a good move. I went to art school without any question of whether or not I belonged there due to my sex. JudyReading Judy Chicago's early memoir was a good move. I went to art school without any question of whether or not I belonged there due to my sex. Judy observed female classmates shying away from asking questions, overshadowed by male peers, and often ending any chance of an art career once married and swamped with household duties. Judy had the luxury of growing up in a home where her intellectualism and artistry were encouraged. She felt empowered when it came to art school. I felt entitled.
Women today stand on the shoulders of the women who have gone before. Judy Chicago was one of the foremost feminist artists, and she continues her work today. It was a fortuitous read for me at a time when I am deciding how art fits into my life....more
I would give it 3.5 stars if I could. The first part of the book was a turn-off. Apparently, David thinks that the missing element from eating is ourI would give it 3.5 stars if I could. The first part of the book was a turn-off. Apparently, David thinks that the missing element from eating is our relationship with God and our recognition of ourselves as manifestations of the divine.
Yeah. So helpful. Thanks.
Anyway, he does have some helpful information in this book. Some of what I found helpful:
"By telling you to avoid meat, for example, some vegetarian proponents are not only asking you to eliminate it because it is harmful to health, they are telling you to 'eat my system, eat my way of seeing the world, eat my belief that killing animals is unhealthy...' Likewise, when meat eaters tell you to eat meat, they are not just promoting its health-giving effects, they are saying, 'eat my system, eat my belief that it is acceptable to kill animals, that eating meat does not make you morally corrupt." (p.31)
Full disclosure, I am a vegetarian. But I appreciate David's exposure of what every diet is - a philosophy, a way of life, a system. When "diet experts" say you should eat a certain way, they are asking you to believe in more than the food they promote. Think about it.
Of course than he points out that the "anything goes" diet is still a system, even without rules and regulations. He suggests that people with this diet secretly fear responsibility. I don't know that that is true, so I'm taking it with a grain of salt.
"We...literally have less ability to digest food when our mind is improperly digesting life's experiences." (p. 45)
This sentence pops up among the discussion of stress or anxiety and digestion. When our sympathetic nervous system (the fight-or-flee response) is alerted, digestion is put on the back burner, even if there's food going down the pipes. Sure, digestion still happens, but not nearly to the extent it would if we're relaxed. So enjoy what you've eaten or are about to eat, and relax!
Probably the best line was:
"When we say to someone, 'Don't eat that food, it is bad for you,' what they often hear is, 'You're a bad person for eating that food.'"
This leads to a discussion on "good" and "bad" food, self-worth, and identification. I suppose after years of hearing, "You are what you eat," it is not so large a leap as to connect "bad" foods to a "bad" self.
Essentially, the remainder of the book talks about our approach to food, to family, to life, and to nourishing ourselves. It is about intuitive eating, listening to our bodies and recognizing that the body's needs do change over seasons and years. There is a chapter on craving, and dealing with cravings without trying to muscle them into submission.
Overall, I'd say the book has its good qualities. I'd say it was helpful in building my food philosophy, and probably would be helpful in anyone's.
While some of Gilbert's musings on various historical traditions of marriage can be fascinating, there is a lot of neurotic spiraling as she wrestlesWhile some of Gilbert's musings on various historical traditions of marriage can be fascinating, there is a lot of neurotic spiraling as she wrestles with her fears and discomforts regarding marriage. While I myself am in no shortage of neurotic spirals, I'm not sure they or anyone else's make for a good read.
Fascinating chunks of information include the fact that in the early days of Christianity, the church fathers preached against marriage. With a plethora of adults to convert, procreation was not a necessity and was even discouraged.boffo final thinker-on-marriage whom she introduces, Sir Mount, presents the "institution" of marriage as the most subversive activity against authority (so long as it is not an arranged marriage). I was intrigued by this, as to me, it always had seemed as of society invented and regulated marriage, when perhaps it is the couples who willingly choose mates create marriages, and now can create those marriages on their own terms.
Also, I'm glad she talked a little about the "Auntie Brigade," that worldwide population of woman who remain childless - a large enough percentage by choice. Not every woman longs for motherhood, even if they might appreciate or love other people's children.
As she points out, she is not a psychologist, sociologist, or any kind of "expert." At times, I got tired of the rambling. But, I did appreciate some of the anecdotes, and some of the historical information....more
OH MY GOD. I got to the end I went all to pieces. I can't even go to the fourth book just yet because I am so satiated by the fantastic twists and turOH MY GOD. I got to the end I went all to pieces. I can't even go to the fourth book just yet because I am so satiated by the fantastic twists and turns of this book that I need to rest a while and digest before the next course. That's how awesome these books are....more