Reading Week Two: Max Kerns


So as I started the current reading I was very intrigued by the areas that were being mentioned. I feel very luck that I live in a time that I can very easily take a virtual journey to the places Robert Sullivan was mentioning in the book. I did a general aerial shot of the  to kind of get my bearing. I then followed the 1-95 towards Manhattan down the side of Snake Hill, which I believe is now called Laurel Hill. This is the igneous outcrop Sullivan refers to, and sparked my curiosity.

Some points that I thought were of interest in the book so far. I still have a little more to read so I will be adding to the list:

p. 14-15: I like were Sullivan is talking about people getting on planes to head out west to “travel and explore”, he goes on to mention that he choses to go back to areas that were exploited and have once again made able to explore due to abandonment or let to go to a chaotic state. I found this intriguing because it has this implication of being wild, even though human interaction is felt throughout most of the area. Was the area then tamed? I find this idea to be a recurring theme.

p. 21 I found it interesting that the author chose to describe the cloverleafs as “a cell undergoing mitosis”, it was somewhat strange as it was a human construct but viewing it as organic in nature. It makes me wonder if there is blatant idea from the author to suggest a  symbiotic relationship between humankind and nature.

p. 24 There is this idea that the medowlands are untamable.

p. 27 Idea that the meadow lands are dismal, yet have a wide variety of life. There is a beautiful story about butterflies. Also throughout the book many species of ladybugs, birds, fish, etc..

p. 33 This idea of exploring areas of a map that are unknown, not named, largely open areas.

p. 80 Mention of giant outdoor ashtray, rusted cables, water with high toxicity. Though life emerges, this chaotic area, though is it molded by human interaction? Once again is it wilderness, or area that is slowly being reclaimed by nature.

p. 117 This idea of the chemicals, and the mosquito decorations.

p. 127 Leo is a great read. Love this guy. He talks about how the meadow lands basically saved his life. Stories and letters to the editor are priceless. I also love how he scoffs at the author about being scared about falling into the water, mind you this is after the story he tells of riding his bike and his contraption for not drowning, this whole chapter is so sweet and priceless.

p. 165 Just started but really like John Watson, He kind of reminds me of if the area was a person. I have not gotten far enough yet to know for sure yet.


Cronon – the trouble with wilderness

General thoughts:

I found it interesting the ideas of biblical ideas with nature. This concept of leaving the city led to moral degradation.

That cultural ideas define what wilderness is and what it means.

This redefining of wild, and how getting back to nature, is an important step. It is interesting because it makes me think about the cycle of humans coming from nature, then defining it as being something separate, then this need to preserve and protect it as a place to return to define who we really are.

I still have some reading to do so will update with final thoughts tomorrow. (really just trying to get some thoughts going for myself)





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