As Eve Said to the Serpent: On Landscape, Gender, and Art

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University of Georgia Press, 2003 - Social Science - 234 pages
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To Rebecca Solnit, the word "landscape" implies not only literal places, but also the ground on which we invent our lives and confront our innermost troubles and desires. The organic world, to Solnit, gives rise to the social, political, and philosophical landscapes we inhabit. As Eve Said to the Serpent skillfully weaves the natural world with the realm of art--its history, techniques, and criticism--to offer a remarkable compendium of Solnit's research and ruminations.

The nineteen pieces in this book range from the intellectual formality of traditional art criticism to highly personal, lyrical meditations. All are distinguished by Solnit's vivid, original style that blends imaginative associations with penetrating insights. These thoughts produce quirky, intelligent, and wryly humorous content as Solnit ranges across disciplines to explore nuclear test sites, the meaning of national borders, deserts, clouds, and caves--as well as ideas of the feminine and the sublime as they relate to our physical and psychological terrains.

Sixty images throughout the book display the work of the contemporary artists under discussion, including landscape photographers, performance artists, sculptors, and installation artists. Alongside her text, Solnit's gallery of images provides a vivid excursion into new ways of perceiving landscape, bodies, and art. Animals and the human body appear together with space and terra firma as Solnit reconfigures the blurred lines that define nature.

 

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User Review  - deliriumslibrarian - LibraryThing

Solnit is one of the most interesting American essayists of the moment - more explosive, more playful, more erudite and more alive than the dull McSweeny's crew. Here she shows how the absences and ... Read full review

As Eve said to the serpent: on landscape, gender, and art

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

In this diverse and intelligent collection, Solnit (Wanderlust) gathers 18 examples of her ongoing investigation of art, landscape, feminism, and the importance of how we relate to the places in which ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

BirdsEye View
1
Use Meitners Walking Shoes
15
Elements of a New Landscape
45
Scapeland
63
Unsettling the West Contemporary American Landscape Photography
90
New Western Landscapes
99
The Garden of Merging Paths
109
Policing Paradise or Et in California Ego
123
Caves
177
The Atmosphere That Surrounds Solid Bodies
181
Timelines
184
The Vanishing Point
186
Flower Thieves
188
Uplift and Separate The Aesthetics of Nature Calendars
200
Notes on the Aesthetic of the Exquisite
205
The Present
219

Noahs Alphabet
133
Crossing
143
Dirt
149
Landscapes of Emergency
160
Notes
223
Acknowledgments
231
Index
233
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About the author (2003)

Rebecca Solnit is the author of twelve books, including A Paradise Built in Hell: The Extraordinary Communities that Arise in Disaster and River of Shadows: Eadweard Muybridge and the Technological Wild West. She has been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, an NEA Fellowship for Literature, and the National Book Critics Circle Award in Criticism.

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