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Beyond the Hundredth Meridian: John Wesley Powell and the Second Opening of the West (1954)

por Wallace Stegner

Outros autores: Bernard DeVoto (Introdução)

Outros autores: Ver a secção outros autores.

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Pulitzer Prize winner Wallace Stegner recounts the remarkable career of Major John Wesley Powell, the distinguished ethnologist and geologist who explored the Colorado River, the Grand Canyon, and the homeland of the Southwest Indian tribes. This classic work is a penetrating and insightful study of Powell's career, from the beginning of the Powell Survey, in which Powell and his men famously became the first to descend the Colorado River, to his eventual ouster from the Geological Survey. In masterful prose, Stegner details the expedition, as well as the philosophies and ideas that drove Powell.

A prophet without honor who had a profound understanding of the American West, Powell warned long ago of the dangers economic exploitation would pose to the West??and he spent a good deal of his life battling Washington politics to get his message across. Only now may we recognize just how accurate a prophet he was.… (mais)

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Mostrando 1-5 de 12 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
Beautiful, thoughtful, and sweeping. More than I could take in. My first Stegner book, and it frankly impressed me with the depth of his story, the liveliness of his characters, and his applications to modern society.
I thought this would be the story of how Powell explored the southwest U.S. That is certainly a wild story, but less than half the book. It covers 30 years of Powells career: frontier upstart, unlikely explorer, lobbyist, celebrated scientist, political gamesman, bureaucratic father figure. Years ago vaguely remember hearing that later in the East Powell became an unpopular voice of caution that western water could not support large scale settlement. The last chapters tell how he ruffled feathers and established water and land policies that shaped western politics, land use, and conservationism. Stegner wrote in the 1950s with the limitations of a man in that day, and his applications are still relevant today. But I wonder if the west will hold strong for responsible resource management against the politics of growth and short-term prosperity. The pattern of seasonal widespread wildfires and dropping reservoir water levels is worrying, and I wonder if a modern-day Powell could even prevail on better judgement. ( )
  richjj | Sep 5, 2021 |
stopped reading at p. 136--
nonfiction/history-biography.

Kind of interesting to learn about the surveying of the Colorado River (Utah, Arizona, etc.) but tends to treat the Native American's experiences as inconsequential. Also frequently uses esoteric terms which reader is likely unfamiliar with (but this is what the internet dictionary is for?). ( )
  reader1009 | Jul 6, 2021 |
Excellent audio but probably better as a text book, probably are maps that help the story. Still, good listen ( )
  marshapetry | Nov 20, 2018 |
A very thorough study of John Wesley Powell's life in public service, beginning with his expeditions to explore the rivers of the canyon lands through to his directorship of the Bureau of Ethnology and the U.S. Geological Survey. A significant part of the book focused on the political battles waged against Powell's vision for a cooperative settlement of the arid west in regards to water usage and rights, battles which are still being fought today. This was much drier than I expected (sorry for the pun) but here and there Stegner's masterful turn of phrase came through. ( )
  wandaly | Feb 25, 2017 |
A superb book about the latter half of the 19th century in the American West w/ J.W. Powell as the chief protagonist. Literate and provocative....where are these writers today? As I read this I was simultaneously reading/scanning First Through the Grand Canyon by Michael Ghiglieri. Working at the Grand Canyon, I've been told by countless people how poor Stegner's book is and some of those comment on how great Ghiglieri's book is. They are absolutely, completely, and totally bonkers. I've since found out that most of them know or are friends of Ghiglieri. That is certainly the only way he could have gotten the reviews he got and placed on the cover.
Anyway, to cut it short, Stegner knows how to write, does not feel the need to use a book as a means of starting/creating a vendetta against someone he doesn't like, and is considerably more balanced and literate in his approach. A great book by Stegner and worthy of the accolades. Grand Canyon people do not read.... ( )
  untraveller | Dec 4, 2015 |
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Wallace Stegnerautor principaltodas as ediçõescalculado
DeVoto, BernardIntroduçãoautor secundáriotodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Bramhall, MarkNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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History. Nonfiction. HTML:

Pulitzer Prize winner Wallace Stegner recounts the remarkable career of Major John Wesley Powell, the distinguished ethnologist and geologist who explored the Colorado River, the Grand Canyon, and the homeland of the Southwest Indian tribes. This classic work is a penetrating and insightful study of Powell's career, from the beginning of the Powell Survey, in which Powell and his men famously became the first to descend the Colorado River, to his eventual ouster from the Geological Survey. In masterful prose, Stegner details the expedition, as well as the philosophies and ideas that drove Powell.

A prophet without honor who had a profound understanding of the American West, Powell warned long ago of the dangers economic exploitation would pose to the West??and he spent a good deal of his life battling Washington politics to get his message across. Only now may we recognize just how accurate a prophet he was.

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