Dry: Life Without Water
Ehsan Masood, Daniel Schaffer
Harvard University Press, 2006 - Nature - 192 pages
Water is in the air we breathe and beneath the ground we walk on. The very substance of life, it makes up as much as 60 percent of the human body. And yet, for one billion people there is such a thing as life without water. These are the people we meet in Dry--those who live in the dry lands of Africa, Asia, the Pacific, and the Americas, eking out an existence at once remarkable and mundane between craggy mountains, near oases, or close to well-springs surrounded by cracked earth or shifting sands.
From the ingenuity of the highland people of Chile's Atacama desert who use giant nets to capture water from clouds of fog, to the ancient wisdom that protects the grazing lands of Kenya's Masai, this beautifully illustrated book tells the diverse stories about people in very hot, very cold, or very high places, who spend their lives collecting, chasing, piping, and trapping the water that life requires--all the while taking great care that no form of life, plant or animal, benefits at the expense of another.
In a world of finite resources, where the struggle for shrinking sources of water intensifies daily, these stories--collected over three years by photographers, writers, and scientists from four continents--are a source of hope and wonder. This book contains a wealth of information and images designed to further awareness of the vast array of life that is carried on precariously yet proudly on the earth's dryest lands.