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People and Nature

An Introduction to Human Ecological Relations

Emilio F. Moran



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John Wiley & Sons Inc
19 August 2016
Now updated and expanded, People and Nature is a lively, accessible introduction to environmental anthropology that focuses on the interactions between people, culture, and nature around the world.

Written by a respected scholar in environmental anthropology with a multi-disciplinary focus that also draws from geography, ecology, and environmental studies Addresses new issues of importance, including climate change, population change, the rise of the slow food and farm-to-table movements, and consumer-driven shifts in sustainability Explains key theoretical issues in the field, as well as the most important research, at a level appropriate for readers coming to the topic for the first time Discusses the challenges in ensuring a livable future for generations to come and explores solutions for correcting the damage already done to the environment Offers a powerful, hopeful future vision for improved relations between humans and nature that embraces the idea of community needs rather than consumption wants, and the importance of building trust as a foundation for a sustainable future
By:   Emilio F. Moran
Imprint:   John Wiley & Sons Inc
Country of Publication:   United States
Edition:   2nd Edition
Dimensions:   Height: 238mm,  Width: 162mm,  Spine: 15mm
Weight:   364g
ISBN:   9781118877470
ISBN 10:   1118877470
Series:   Primers in Anthropology
Pages:   272
Publication Date:   19 August 2016
Audience:   College/higher education ,  Professional and scholarly ,  Primary ,  Undergraduate
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active
Preface to the Second Edition x Acknowledgments xiii 1 Human Agency and the State of the Earth 1 Introduction 1 Can One Conceive of Ecosystems Without Human Agents? 11 Human Agency: Individuals Making a Difference 14 Overwhelming Evidence for Concern with the Condition of the Earth System 17 Looking Back and Looking Forward 26 Additional Resources 27 References 28 2 A Reminder: How Things Were... 33 The Study of Human Ecological Relations 33 The Contemporary Study of Environmental Issues: The Rise of Cross-Disciplinary Team-Based Approaches 39 The Evolution of Human-Environment Interactions 47 Hunter-Gatherers: Setting Our Preferences 52 How Did We Decide to Become Farmers? 56 Herding and Farming: An Uneasy Relationship 59 More Food for the Masses 61 Additional Resources 64 References 64 3 The Great Forgetting 75 Earth Transformations in Prehistory 75 The Archeology of Environmental Change 83 The Urban-Industrial Revolution and the Unleashing of Prometheus 86 The Contemporary Situation: Human-Dominated Ecosystems 89 Additional Resources 91 References 92 4 The Web of Life: Are We in it? 96 The Web of Life and Trophic Relations: Thinking Ecologically 96 Ecosystem Productivity and Net Primary Production 103 Land Use and Long-Term Disturbance 105 Additional Resources 117 References 117 5 What Makes People Do That? 122 Learning, Adaptation, and Information 122 Mitigation and the Cautionary Principle 135 Transforming the Face of the Earth: Making Better Decisions 136 Additional Resources 139 References 140 6 Population and Environment 145 Theories about Population 146 The Demographic Transition 147 Aging and International Flows of Labor 150 Addressing the Needs of 10 Billion People 153 Changing the Population and Environment Nexus 159 Additional Resources 162 References 163 7 Rebuilding Communities and Institutions 166 Community in Human Evolution 166 What is Sacred in Human Evolution? 169 Tragedies of the Commons 172 Institutions and Self-Organization 176 Bioregionalism, Deep Ecology, and Embedding People in Nature 180 Additional Resources 182 References 183 8 Can We Learn When We Have Enough? 188 Material Boys and Material Girls 188 Patterns of Consumption in Developed Countries 189 Patterns of Consumption in Developing Countries 196 A Feeding Frenzy and a Crisis in Public Health 200 Burning Fossil Fuels instead of Calories 202 Do We Have Enough Material Goods Now? 205 Additional Resources 207 References 208 9 Quality of Life: When Less is More 210 Resource Abundance versus Resource Scarcity 210 When Less is More 220 The Scale of the Problem and the Scale of the Solution 229 Restoring Our Balance: Valuing Community and Trust 233 Are We Happier When We Have More? 238 References 241 Index 244

Emilio F. Moran is John A. Hannah Distinguished Professor at the Center for Global Change and Earth Observations, the Center for System Integration and Sustainability, and the Department of Geography at Michigan State University, USA. Until 2012, he was Distinguished Professor and the James H. Rudy Professor of Anthropology at Indiana University, USA. He is the author of ten books, fifteen edited volumes, and more than 190 journal articles and book chapters, which address human interaction with the environment under conditions of change. Most recently, he is the author of Environmental Social Science: Human-Environment Interactions and Sustainability(Wiley Blackwell, 2010). He is a Fellow of the Linnean Society of London, the American Anthropological Association, the Society for Applied Anthropology, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2010.

Reviews for People and Nature: An Introduction to Human Ecological Relations

We need more books like this! Moran provides a wonderfully accessible and compelling introduction to the greatest issue of our times. This book is required reading to understand the all-too-human dimension of the environmental crisis and why there is real hope for recovery. Tom Lovejoy, The H. John Heinz III Center for Science, Economics and the Environment Vintage Emilio Moran! A highly readable, well grounded and insightful stock- taking of human environmental relations--a perspective that will be highly valued by both students and others concerned with an enlightened view of how our species manages or mismanages its habitat. Daniel G. Bates, Hunter College, CUNY, and Editor, Human Ecology In this original and thoughtful book, Moran leads readers from the past history of human interactions with natural ecosystems through the present crisis of environmental sustainability and into the future, noting serious challenges, and positive trends as well. Ben Orlove, University of California Davis, and Editor, Current Anthropology Moran...provides a primer of the field for beginning students, covering current environmental problems from an anthropological perspective and looking to hunter-gatherers, early farmers, and other ancient and traditional peoples for comparison. Students can learn what they can do to make the world simpler and better. Recommended for libraries serving high school and undergraduate students, and anyone interested in living more wisely. Choice Those among us who would like to better understand the intricate interaction between knowledge on environmental issues and societal reactions will most definitely profit from this little book, which can be whole heartedly recommended. Environmental Geology The major themes of People and Nature provide a menu rich enough to satisfy any beginning student of ecological anthropology. BioScience People and Nature is the first volume published within the series titled Primers in Anthropology. The aim of the series is to offer a lively overview on a traditional area of anthropological study, an aim which Moran's book no doubt accomplishes. Journal of Social Anthropology

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