Guano and the Opening of the Pacific World: A Global Ecological History

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Cambridge University Press, Mar 25, 2013 - Business & Economics - 392 pages
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For centuries, bird guano has played a pivotal role in the agricultural and economic development of Latin America, East Asia, and Oceania. As their populations ballooned during the Industrial Revolution, North American and European powers came to depend on this unique resource as well, helping them meet their ever-increasing farming needs. This book explores how the production and commodification of guano has shaped the modern Pacific Basin and the world's relationship to the region. Marrying traditional methods of historical analysis with a broad interdisciplinary approach, Gregory T. Cushman casts this once little-known commodity as an engine of Western industrialization, offering new insight into uniquely modern developments such as environmental consciousness and conservation movements; the ascendance of science, technology, and expertise; international relations; and world war.

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User Review  - deblemrc - LibraryThing

Very broad history of the Guano industry in South America of the last 200 years. Well researched, but the book gets, to my taste, lost too much in detailed descriptions of environmental protection ... Read full review


The Guano Age
NeoEcological Imperialism
Where Is Banaba?
Conservation and the Technocratic Ideal 1 3 6
The Most Valuable Birds in the World 1 67
When the Japanese Came to Dinner
The Road to Survival
Guano and the Blue Revolution
Select Bibliography 3 5 1

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About the author (2013)

Gregory T. Cushman is an Associate Professor of History at the University of Kansas, where he teaches courses on international environmental history. He works closely with environmental scientists in interdisciplinary research and teaching and has published a number of articles on climate history and the history of climate science. He was awarded a Fulbright scholarship in 2007.

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