What is Water?: The History of a Modern Abstraction

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UBC Press, 2010 - Nature - 333 pages
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We all know what water is, and we often take it for granted. But the spectre of a worldwide water crisis suggests that there might be something fundamentally wrong with the way we think about water. Jamie Linton dives into the history of water as an abstract concept, stripped of its environmental, social, and cultural contexts. Reduced to a scientific abstraction - to mere H20 - this concept has given modern society licence to dam, divert, and manipulate water with apparent impunity. Part of the solution to the water crisis involves reinvesting water with social content, thus altering the way we see water. An original take on a deceptively complex issue, What Is Water? offers a fresh approach to a fundamental problem.
 

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Contents

Putting Things in Fluid Terms
24
Intimations ofModern Water
47
From Premodern Waters to Modern Water
73
Scientific and Sacred
105
The Hortonian Hydrologic Cycle
126
Modern Water the Hydrologic Cycle
148
Global Water
162
The Constitution of Modern Water
175
Modern Water in Crisis
191
The New Global Water Regime
212
Hydrolectics
223
Copyright

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About the author (2010)

Jamie Linton is a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow in theDepartment of Geography at Queen’s University.

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