Savage Dreams: A Journey into the Hidden Wars of the American West

Author(s): Rebecca Solnit


"A beautiful, absorbing, tragic book."--Larry McMurtry In 1851, a war began in what would become Yosemite National Park, a war against the indigenous inhabitants. A century later--in 1951--and a hundred and fifty miles away, another war began when the U.S. government started setting off nuclear bombs at the Nevada Test Site. It was called a nuclear testing program, but functioned as a war against the land and people of the Great Basin. In this foundational book of landscape theory and environmental thinking, Rebecca Solnit explores our national Eden and Armageddon and offers a pathbreaking history of the west, focusing on the relationship between culture and its implementation as politics. In a new preface, she considers the continuities and changes of these invisible wars in the context of our current climate change crisis, and reveals how the long arm of these histories continue to inspire her writing and hope.


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Rebecca Solnit is the author of many books, including Storming the Gates of Paradise, Infinite City: A San Francisco Atlas, and Unfathomable City: A New Orleans Atlas, all from UC Press.

Acknowledgments New Preface DUST, OR ERASING THE FUTURE: THE NEVADA TEST SITE From Hell to Breakfast Like Moths to a Candle April Fool's Day Trees Lise Meitner's Walking Shoes Golden Hours and Iron County Ruby Valley and the Ranch The War Keeping Pace with the Tortoise WATER, OR FORGETTING THE PAST: YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK The Rainbow Spectators Framing the View Vanishing (Remaining) Fire in the Garden The Name of the Snake Up the River of Mercy Savage's Grave Full Circle Afterword Sources Index

General Fields

  • : 9780520282285
  • : University of California Press
  • : University of California Press
  • : 0.463
  • : May 2014
  • : 210mm X 140mm X 25mm
  • : United States
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 440
  • : Paperback
  • : Rebecca Solnit