Carl Safina

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Carl Safina

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Born
in Brooklyn, NY, The United States
May 23, 1955

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May 2010

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Carl Safina’s work has been recognized with MacArthur, Pew, and Guggenheim Fellowships, and his writing has won Orion, Lannan, and National Academies literary awards and the John Burroughs, James Beard, and George Rabb medals. He has a PhD in ecology from Rutgers University. Safina is the inaugural holder of the endowed chair for nature and humanity at Stony Brook University, where he co-chairs the steering committee of the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science and is founding president of the not-for-profit organization, The Safina Center. He hosted the 10-part PBS series Saving the Ocean with Carl Safina. His writing appears in The New York Times, Audubon, Orion, and other periodicals and on the Web at National Geographic News and Vi ...more

South Georgia. Photo: Carl Safina

Celebrated sea captain James Cook implanted a British flag down into the rocky, icy ground on the shore of South Georgia in 1775. When he did so, he claimed ownership of the icy, mountainous Antarctic island not only for his country’s humans, but, inadvertently, also for its rodents. From the arrival of Cook onward, ships carrying explorers, scientists, whalers,...

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Published on May 11, 2018 12:07 • 157 views
Average rating: 4.3 · 4,118 ratings · 614 reviews · 19 distinct worksSimilar authors
Beyond Words: What Animals ...

4.39 avg rating — 1,880 ratings — published 2015 — 19 editions
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Song for the Blue Ocean: En...

4.28 avg rating — 723 ratings — published 1998 — 5 editions
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Voyage of the Turtle: In Pu...

4.21 avg rating — 609 ratings — published 2006 — 6 editions
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The View from Lazy Point: A...

4.25 avg rating — 382 ratings — published 2011 — 5 editions
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Eye of the Albatross: Visio...

4.25 avg rating — 322 ratings — published 2002 — 6 editions
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A Sea in Flames: The Deepwa...

3.82 avg rating — 110 ratings — published 2011 — 7 editions
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Nina Delmar: The Great Whal...

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4.90 avg rating — 10 ratings — published 2010 — 2 editions
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The Last Great Sea: Voyage ...

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4.07 avg rating — 27 ratings — published 2000 — 4 editions
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The Last Ocean: Antarctica'...

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4.91 avg rating — 11 ratings — published 2013
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Shifting Baselines: The Pas...

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really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 14 ratings — published 2011 — 4 editions
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More books by Carl Safina…

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Carl Safina wrote a new blog post
South Georgia. Photo: Carl Safina
Celebrated sea captain James Cook implanted a British flag down into the rocky, icy ground on the shore of South G... Read more of this blog post »
Carl Safina rated a book it was amazing
Henry David Thoreau by Laura Dassow Walls
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I finally finished reading the superb Thoreau biography by Laura Walls. One of those books I savored because I did not want it to end.

Every paragraph was excellent. It was like opening up the drapes and windows on a man I’d long considered a hero bu
...more
Carl Safina rated a book really liked it
A Wolf Called Romeo by Nick Jans
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A surprisingly good book; surprising because it’s titled A Wolf Called Romeo and it’s written in an initially offputtingly breezy style. But it’s loaded with facts about wolves that quite accurately sum up a lot of the science that I recently learned ...more
Carl Safina made a comment on his review of The Selfish Gene
The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins
" Yes, I know. And I think much of the book is biologically inaccurate. "
Carl Safina rated a book really liked it
A Wolf Called Romeo by Nick Jans
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A surprisingly good book; surprising because it’s titled A Wolf Called Romeo and it’s written in an initially offputtingly breezy style. But it’s loaded with facts about wolves that quite accurately sum up a lot of the science that I recently learned ...more
The Meaning of Human Existence by Edward O. Wilson
" Wilson is an extremely important thinker but at times his writing falls short of his thinking. Read him for his ideas. "
Carl Safina finished reading
In Paradise by Peter Matthiessen
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Carl Safina made a comment on his review of In Paradise
In Paradise by Peter Matthiessen
" Matthiessen's last. Not his best but certainly worth it for Matthiessen devotees. "
Life Everlasting by Bernd Heinrich
" Heinrich is the greatest living writer about the natural world. "
The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown
" It's all been said before--a great read and an astonishing slice of time. "
More of Carl's books…
“Saving the world requires saving democracy. That requires well-informed citizens. Conservation, environment, poverty, community, education, family, health, economy- these combine to make one quest: liberty and justice for all. Whether one's special emphasis is global warming or child welfare, the cause is the same cause. And justice comes from the same place being human comes from: compassion.”
Carl Safina, The View from Lazy Point: A Natural Year in an Unnatural World

“Ethics that focus on human interactions, morals that focus on humanity's relationship to a Creator, fall short of these things we've learned. They fail to encompass the big take-home message, so far, of a century and a half of biology and ecology: life is- more than anything else- a process; it creates, and depends on, relationships among energy, land, water, air, time and various living things. It's not just about human-to-human interaction; it's not just about spiritual interaction. It's about all interaction. We're bound with the rest of life in a network, a network including not just all living things but the energy and nonliving matter that flows through the living, making and keeping all of us alive as we make it alive. We can keep debating ideologies and sending entreaties toward heaven. But unless we embrace the fuller reality we're in- and reality's implications- we'll face big problems.”
Carl Safina, The View from Lazy Point: A Natural Year in an Unnatural World

“The compass of compassion asks not what is good for me? but what is good? Not what is best for me but what is best. Not what is right for me but what is right. Not how much can we take? but How much ought we leave? and how much might we give? Not what is easy but what is worthy. Not what is practical but what is moral.”
Carl Safina, The View from Lazy Point: A Natural Year in an Unnatural World

Topics Mentioning This Author

“Another big group of dolphins had just surfaced alongside our moving vessel—leaping and splashing and calling mysteriously back and forth in their squeally, whistly way, with many babies swift alongside their mothers. And this time, confined to just the surface of such deep and lovely lives, I was becoming unsatisfied. I wanted to know what they were experiencing, and why to us they feel so compelling, and so—close. This time I allowed myself to ask them the question that was forbidden fruit: Who are you? Science usually steers firmly from questions about the inner lives of animals. Surely they have inner lives of some sort. But like a child who is admonished that what they really want to ask is impolite, a young scientist is taught that the animal mind—if there is such—is unknowable. Permissible questions are “it” questions: where it lives; what it eats; what it does when danger threatens; how it breeds. But always forbidden—always forbidden—is the one question that might open the door: “Who?” — Carl Safina”
Carl Safina, Beyond Words: What Animals Think and Feel

“We look at the world through our own eyes, naturally. But by looking from the inside out, we see an inside-out world. This book takes the perspective of the world outside us—a world in which humans are not the measure of all things, a human race among other races. ...In our estrangement from nature we have severed our sense of the community of life and lost touch with the experience of other animals. ...understanding the human animal becomes easier in context, seeing our human thread woven into the living web among the strands of so many others.”
Carl Safina, Beyond Words: What Animals Think and Feel




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