The Wayfinders: Why Ancient Wisdom Matters in the Modern World

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House of Anansi, 2009 - Social Science - 262 pages
100 Reviews
Many of us are alarmed by the accelerating rates of extinction of plants and animals. But how many of us know that human cultures are going extinct at an even more shocking rate? While biologists estimate that 18 percent of mammals and 11 percent of birds are threatened, and botanists anticipate the loss of 8 percent of flora, anthropologists predict that fully 50 percent of the 7,000 languages spoken around the world today will disappear within our lifetimes. And languages are merely the canaries in the coal mine: what of the knowledge, stories, songs, and ways of seeing encoded in these voices?
In The Wayfinders, Wade Davis offers a gripping and enlightening account of this urgent crisis. He leads us on a fascinating tour through a handful of indigenous cultures, describing the worldviews they represent and reminding us of the encroaching danger to humankind's survival should they vanish.
  

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Review: The Wayfinders: Why Ancient Wisdom Matters in the Modern World (CBC Massey Lecture)

User Review  - Matt Root - Goodreads

A brilliant look at the diversity of human cultural genius Read full review

Review: The Wayfinders: Why Ancient Wisdom Matters in the Modern World (CBC Massey Lecture)

User Review  - John Philson - Goodreads

excellent, passionate, informative. Read full review

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Contents

1 Season of the Brown Hyena
1
2 The Wayfinders
35
3 Peoples of the Anaconda
79
4 Sacred Geography
116
5 Century of the Wind
162
Annotated Bibliography
224
Acknowledgements
245
Index
250
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About the author (2009)

WADE DAVIS is the bestselling author of several books, including The Serpent and the Rainbow, Light at the Edge of the World, and One River. He is an award-winning anthropologist, ethnobotanist, filmmaker, and photographer. Davis currently holds the post of National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence, and divides his time between Washington, D.C. and northern British Columbia.

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