Wade Davis


Born
in West Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
December 14, 1958

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Edmund Wade Davis has been described as "a rare combination of scientist, scholar, poet, and passionate defender of all of life's diversity."

An ethnographer, writer, photographer, and filmmaker, he holds degrees in anthropology and biology and received his Ph.D. in ethnobotany, all from Harvard University. Mostly through the Harvard Botanical Museum, he spent more than three years in the Amazon and Andes as a plant explorer, living among 15 indigenous groups in eight Latin American nations while making some 6,000 botanical collections. His work later took him to Haiti to investigate folk preparations implicated in the creation of zombies, an assignment that led to his writing Passage of Darkness (1988) and The Serpent and the Rainbow (1986)
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Average rating: 4.17 · 15,756 ratings · 1,920 reviews · 55 distinct worksSimilar authors
The Serpent and the Rainbow

3.92 avg rating — 4,125 ratings — published 1985 — 20 editions
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Into the Silence: The Great...

4.25 avg rating — 3,619 ratings — published 2011 — 23 editions
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The Wayfinders: Why Ancient...

4.24 avg rating — 2,752 ratings22 editions
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One River

4.45 avg rating — 1,997 ratings — published 1996 — 17 editions
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Light at the Edge of the World

4.22 avg rating — 669 ratings — published 2001 — 9 editions
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Shadows in the Sun: Travels...

4.17 avg rating — 399 ratings — published 1992 — 14 editions
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Magdalena: River of Dreams

4.26 avg rating — 328 ratings — published 2020 — 12 editions
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Passage of Darkness: The Et...

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4.13 avg rating — 179 ratings — published 1988 — 5 editions
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The Lost Amazon

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4.39 avg rating — 142 ratings — published 2004 — 7 editions
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River Notes: A Natural and ...

3.88 avg rating — 156 ratings — published 2012 — 3 editions
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“The world in which you were born is just one model of reality. Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you; they are unique manifestations of the human spirit.”
Wade Davis

“If diversity is a source of wonder, its opposite - the ubiquitous condensation to some blandly amorphous and singulary generic modern culture that takes for granted an impoverished environment - is a source of dismay. There is, indeed, a fire burning over the earth, taking with it plants and animals, cultures, languages, ancient skills and visionary wisdom. Quelling this flame, and re-inventing the poetry of diversity is perhaps the most importent challenge of our times.”
Wade Davis, The Wayfinders: Why Ancient Wisdom Matters in the Modern World

“Cultural survival is not about preservation, sequestering indigenous peoples in enclaves like some sort of zoological specimens. Change itself does note destroy a culture. All societies are constantly evolving. Indeed a culture survives when it has enough confidence in its past and enough say in its future to maintain its spirit and essence through all the changes it will inevitably undergo.”
Wade Davis, Light at the Edge of the World

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