The Hour of Land

The Hour of Land

A Personal Topography of America's National Parks

Book - 2016
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"A personal, lyrical, and idiosyncratic ode to our national parks"-- Provided by publisher.
"For years, America's national parks have provided public breathing spaces in a world in which such spaces are steadily disappearing, which is why close to 300 million people visit the parks each year. Now, to honor the centennial of the National Park Service, Terry Tempest Williams, the author of the beloved memoir When Women Were Birds, returns with The Hour of Land, a literary celebration of our national parks, what they mean to us, and what we mean to them. Through twelve carefully chosen parks, from Yellowstone in Wyoming to Acadia in Maine to Big Bend in Texas, Tempest Williams creates a series of lyrical portraits that illuminate the unique grandeur of each place while delving into what it means to shape a landscape with its own evolutionary history into something of our own making. Part memoir, part natural history, and part social critique, The Hour of Land is a meditation and manifesto on why wild lands matter to the soul of America. Our national parks stand at the intersection of humanity and wildness, and there's no one better than Tempest Williams to guide us there. Beautifully illustrated, with evocative black-and-white images by some of our finest photographers, from Lee Friedlander to Sally Mann to Sebastião Salgado, The Hour of Land will be a collector's item as well as a seminal work of environmental writing and criticism about some of America's most treasured landmarks"-- Provided by publisher.
America's national parks have provided public breathing spaces in a world in which such spaces are steadily disappearing. Close to 300 million people visit the parks each year. To honor the centennial of the National Park Service Williams provides a literary celebration of our national parks, what they mean to us, and what we mean to them. Focusing on twelve carefully chosen parks he illuminates the unique grandeur of each place while examining into what it means to shape a landscape with its own evolutionary history into something of our own making.
Publisher: New York :, Sarah Crichton Books/Farrar, Straus and Giroux,, 2016
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780374280093
0374280096
0374712263
Characteristics: 395 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm

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AL_RACHEL Jul 08, 2017

This book will lead you to wander through the beauty and history of our National Parks system. The story of the parks is interwoven with the author's personal struggles and triumphs. It felt very intimate at times.

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EmilyEm
Jul 07, 2017

Part celebration, part memoir, part call to action, Williams 'The Hour of Land' takes readers to parks across the country, giving different treatments to her visits depending on circumstances. Beautiful black-and-white photography.

Like Williams I’m a person with strong Western roots and an avid national park visitor. Hers is an ambitious book done well. I might need to own this one. So much to ponder.

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bcjones14
Mar 19, 2017

Disclaimer: I only read chapters on 3 of the parks. I was expecting more history and interesting facts about national parks and less of a memoir-feel. I felt that she came off as pretentious in her discussion of how well-traveled she is and how many times she's visited various parks etc. It did inspire me to add a few lesser known national parks to my future travels list.

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lukasevansherman
Oct 18, 2016

"Wilderness is an antidote to the war within ourselves."
I think StarGladiator is missing the point (and maybe a few other things) a bit. Writer and activist Terry Tempest Williams does mention that Rockefeller money went to fund national parks, but this is simply a statement of fact and is not equivalent to approval. So I think it's unfair and unwise to call her a "crypto-corporate-conservationist." Wait, is she crypto-corporate or a crypto-conservationist? Williams, as her subtitle suggests, offers a personal tour of some of America's great parks, including Glacier, Gettysburg, and Acadia. It's a mix of travelogue, personal essay, and nature writing, which I really enjoyed. I mean, once you get past her collusion with homicidal big business interests. I'd also recommend "All the Wild That Remains."

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StarGladiator
Jun 19, 2016

By God I despise this author! Excuse my vitriol, which is only reserved for the most pathetic, and disingenuous, and this author puts the // air \\ in AIRHEAD! She has a deep need for the Rockefellers, and whenever she gives a talk in public it sounds like a Rockefeller lovefest! Truly a crypto-corporate-conservationist, who forever chooses to remain ignorant of how the Rockefellers altered and modified the tax laws to pay them and others of the super-rich landowners to actually own their land. How she chooses to remain ignorant of the pure perfidy and mass murder which the Rockefellers are and have been responsible for, beggars belief! [At least with Simon Johnson, former chief economist with the IMF, on the faculty of MIT - - where white supremacist Fred Koch used to be a trustee - - receives a salary as a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute, founded by Peter G. Peterson and David Rockefeller, so when Johnson spews forth on Rockefeller - - he's on their payroll. With Williams, she's probably doing it for free?!] If Williams remains ignorant of who the owners and masters are at her age, she is a certifiable idiot!

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