The Working Landscape

Front Cover
MIT Press, Jun 22, 2007 - Nature - 448 pages

In America today we see rampant development, unsustainable resource exploitation, and commodification ruin both natural and built landscapes, disconnecting us from our surroundings and threatening our fundamental sense of place. Meanwhile, preservationists often respond with a counterproductive stance that rejects virtually any change in the landscape. In The Working Landscape, Peter Cannav˛ identifies this zero-sum conflict between development and preservation as a major factor behind our contemporary crisis of place. Cannav˛ offers practical and theoretical alternatives to this deadlocked, polarized politics of place by proposing an approach that embraces both change and stability and unifies democratic and ecological values, creating a "working landscape."

Place, Cannav˛ argues, is not just an object but an essential human practice that involves the physical and conceptual organization of our surroundings into a coherent, enduring landscape. This practice must balance development (which he calls "founding") and preservation. Three case studies illustrate the polarizing development-preservation conflict: the debate over the logging of old-growth forests in the Pacific Northwest; the problem of urban sprawl; and the redevelopment of the former site of the World Trade Center in New York City. Cannav˛ suggests that regional, democratic governance is the best framework for integrating development and preservation, and he presents specific policy recommendations that aim to create a "working landscape" in rural, suburban, and urban areas. A postscript on the mass exile, displacement, and homelessness caused by Hurricane Katrina considers the implications of future climate change for the practice of place.

he calls "founding") and preservation. Three case studies illustrate the polarizing development-preservation conflict: the debate over the logging of old-growth forests in the Pacific Northwest; the problem of urban sprawl; and the redevelopment of the former site of the World Trade Center in New York City. Cannav˛ suggests that regional, democratic governance is the best framework for integrating development and preservation, and he presents specific policy recommendations that aim to create a "working landscape" in rural, suburban, and urban areas. A postscript on the mass exile, displacement, and homelessness caused by Hurricane Katrina considers the implications of future climate change for the practice of place.
 

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Contents

Introduction The Phantom Roads of Utah
1
Founding and Preservation
15
2 The Northwest Timber War
49
3 Sprawl
93
4 Rebuilding Ground Zero
123
5 The Crisis of Place
173
6 The Working Landscape
219
7 A Policy Agenda
259
Postscript Place and the Lessons of Katrina
301
Notes
307
Bibliography
377
Index
411
Copyright

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Page 2 - A wilderness, in contrast with those areas where man and his own works dominate the landscape, is hereby recognized as an area where the earth and its community of life are untrammeled by man, where man himself is a visitor who does not remain.
Page 2 - Act an area of undeveloped Federal land retaining its primeval character and influence, without permanent improvements or human habitation, which is protected and managed so as to preserve its natural conditions and which (1) generally appears to have been affected primarily by the forces of nature, with the imprint of man's work substantially unnoticeable...

About the author (2007)

Peter Cannav˛ is Associate Professor of Government and Director of the Environmental Studies Program at Hamilton College and the author of The Working Landscape (MIT Press).

Robert Gottlieb is Emeritus Professor of Urban & Environmental Policy and founder and former Director of the Urban and Environmental Policy Institute at Occidental College. He is the author of Reinventing Los Angeles: Nature and Community in the Global City (MIT Press) and other books.