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This title in other editions

Fire: Nature and Culture (Reaktion Books - Earth)

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Fire: Nature and Culture (Reaktion Books - Earth) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

For over 400 million years, fire has been an integral force on our planet. It can be as innocent as a bonfire or as destructive and lethal as a wildfire. Human history is rife with fires that have leveled cities—the Fire of Moscow in 1812 that destroyed seventy-five percent of the city, the Great Chicago Fire in 1871 that took down 17,000 buildings, and the fire that obliterated San Francisco after the 1906 earthquake are just a few. Fire is a force of nature that can consume everything in its wake, and yet it also has tremendous powers of cleansing and renewal. At the end of the day, we can’t live without it.
 
In Fire, Stephen J. Pyne offers a concise history of fire and its use by humanity, explaining how fire has been at the core of hunting, foraging, farming, herding, urbanizing, and managing nature reserves. He depicts how it gave humans power in ancient times, which resulted in humanity beginning to reshape the world for its own benefit. He describes how fire was used by aboriginal societies and the ways agricultural societies added control over fuel, but warns that our mastery of the science and art of fire has not given us complete control—fire disasters throughout history have defined cultures, and unexpected fires that begin as the result of other disasters have shocking effects. Pyne traces fire’s influence on landscapes, art, science, and even climate, exploring the power a simple spark has over our imaginations.
 
Lavishly illustrated with a host of rare and unexpected images, Fire is a sizzling and accessible tale of our relationship with this primal natural force.

About the Author

Stephen J. Pyne is the Regent’s Professor of Environmental History in the School of Life Sciences at Arizona State University. His books include The Still-Burning Bush, Smokechasing, and Fire: A Brief History.

Table of Contents

Prologue: Three Fires

Part One: Fire Wild

1. Creating Combustion

2. Burning Bright, Burning Wide, Burning Deep

Part Two: Fire Tamed

3. Fire Creature

4. Fire Works: Anthropogenic Fire Practices

5. Famous Fires: An Anthology

Part Three: Fire Cultured

6. Fire Studied and Fire Made

7. Fire Painted

8. Fire Celebrated

Part Four: Fire Today

9. The Great Disruption

10. Megafire

Epilogue: Two Fire Worlds

References

Select Bibliography

Associations and Websites

Acknowledgements

Photo Acknowledgements

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9781780230467
Author:
Pyne, Stephen J.
Publisher:
Reaktion Books
Subject:
General Nature
Subject:
Environmental Studies-Environment
Edition Description:
Paperback
Series:
Reaktion Books - Earth
Publication Date:
20121231
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
60 color plates, 40 halftones
Pages:
207
Dimensions:
8.25 x 5.8 in

Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Americana » Fire Fighting
History and Social Science » Western Civilization » General
History and Social Science » World History » Western Civilization
Science and Mathematics » Environmental Studies » Environment
Science and Mathematics » Environmental Studies » General
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » General

Fire: Nature and Culture (Reaktion Books - Earth) New Trade Paper
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Product details 207 pages Reaktion Books - English 9781780230467 Reviews:
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