Shelfari edited the description of Back to Nature Thursday, August 6, 2009.
Many of us go "back to nature" to get away from civilization. But as often as not, our expectations and actions are shaped by idealized notions of natural order, purity, and even neatness that are in fact impositions of civilization on nature. This is a highly insightful, sometimes ironic study of the influence of such paradoxes in the early 20th-century love affair with nature: anthropomorphized animal stories, summer camps, wildlife protection, landscaped cemeteries, wilderness novels and scenic turnoffs that imposed an industrial ethic of order, neatness, and regularity on natural systems. Recommended.