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Paul Shepard (1925 - 1996)

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 Encounters With Nature : Essays
coverThe Only World We've Got : A Paul Shepard Reader by Paul Shepard (Editor). 

This book collects in one volume the writings of a man considered to be an elder of the environmental movement. The essays range from human ecology to environmental perception, from the nature of sanity to our relationships with our fellow animals.

The philosopher and essayist Paul Shepard (1925-1996) brought to the environmental literature of the 1960s and '70s the political passion of the time, but a passion matched with a demand for scholarly precision. This anthology from his work, which Shepard himself assembled not long before his death, addresses themes he touched on in many of his books. Many of them deal in one way or another with the disastrous consequences of humankind's increasing detachment from the natural world as a by-product of "the ecological insolence of the last century." In Shepard's view, the natural world--and particularly the world of animals--is the source of human intelligence and the wellspring of the imagination. He examines, for instance, the antiquity of the human eye, an organ essential to the cognitive revolution that distinguishes us from other primates; the origins of language and of literature in the imitation of birdsong; and the lessons animals of many species can teach us about ourselves. Shepard delves into environmental psychology, anatomy, history, linguistics, and a host of other topics to make his arguments, which are strikingly original. They have also been influential in shaping modern environmental philosophy, and this useful collection shows why that should be so. --Gregory McNamee

"A superb introduction and summation of the work of Paul Shepard, an exceptionally clear thinker who is also a lucid and exhilarating writer.... His work is valuable but very urgent, shining in the sun like the tip of the vast iceberg of knowledge and reflection that supports it." -- Peter Matthiessen, Author of The Snow Leopard

"Much of what we value in contemporary thought about 'nature and culture' grew up in the seedbed of Paul Shepard's thinking. His Writing about child development, physical and cultural anthropology animal behavior, art and mythology, the history of agriculture and other subjects is endlessly stimulating." -- Barry Lopez, Author of Arctic Dreams - Imagination and Desire in a Northern Landscape.  

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Paul Shepard

This website is dedicated to the memory of Paul Shepard.  Site includes bibliography, quotes, photos, book covers, tables of contents for Shepard's work and links to other sites.

 
Other Texts by and about Paul Shepard
bulletComing Home to the Pleistocene  
bulletNature and Madness  
bulletThe Only World We've Got : A Paul Shepard Reader  
bulletThe Others : How Animals Made Us Human
bulletThe Others : How Animals Made Us Human  
bulletThe Tender Carnivore and the Sacred Game  
bulletThinking Animals : Animals and the Development of Human Intelligence  
bulletTraces of an Omnivore  
bulletThe Company of Others : Essays in Celebration of Paul Shepard
bulletEncounters with Nature; Essays by Paul Shepard
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