Search results for: the-unofficial-countryside

The Unofficial Countryside

Author : Richard Mabey
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During the early 1970s Richard Mabey explored crumbling city docks and overgrown bomb-sites, navigated inner city canals and car parks, and discovered there was scarcely a nook in our urban landscape incapable of supporting life. The Unofficial Countryside is a timely reminder of how nature flourishes against the odds, surviving in the most obscure and surprising places. First published 1973 by William Collins Sons & Co.

The Unofficial Countryside

Author : Wai-Kong So
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The Unofficial Countryside

Author : Wai-kong So
File Size : 77.2 MB
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The Unofficial Countryside

Author : Richard Mabey
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'This is, in the most literal sense, a triumphant book. ' THE TIMES Under the banner of progress, urban and suburban development is fast wiping out our rural heritage. Yet Nature is adapting to even the worst of Man's excesses, and in this brilliant book Richard Mabey reveals the astonishing rich world of animal and plant life surviving and often thriving among docklands, railways, factories and canals. From orchids growing in abandoned cars to kestrels over Kensington, this is Britain's UNOFFICIAL COUNTRYSIDE. 'Every once in a while I get the intense pleasure of opening a book and finding it an entirely new way of looking at things. Such a book is Mr Mabey's. . . Truly remarkable. ' DAILY EXPRESS 'Mr Mabey's book is one that should hearten those who feel their surroundings are too mundane and 'spoiled' to provide sanctuary for wildlife. ' COUNTRYSIDE

Landscape and Subjectivity in the Work of Patrick Keiller W G Sebald and Iain Sinclair

Author : David Anderson
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This book situates the film-maker Patrick Keiller alongside the writers W.G. Sebald and Iain Sinclair as the three leading voices in 'English psychogeography', offering new insights to key works including London, The Rings of Saturn, and Lights Out for the Territory. Excavating social and political contexts while also providing plentiful close analysis, it examines the cultivation of a distinctive 'affective' mode or sensibility especially attuned to the cultural anxieties of the twentieth century's closing decades. Landscape and Subjectivity explores motifs including essayism, the reconciliation of creativity with market forces, and the foregrounding of an often agonised or melancholic. It asks whether the work can, collectively, be seen to constitute a 'critical theory of contemporary space' and suggests that Keiller, Sebald, and Sinclair's contributions represent a highly significant moment in English culture's engagement with landscape, environment, and itself. The book's analyses are fuelled by archival and topographical research and are responsive to various interdisciplinary contexts, including the tradition of the 'English Journey', the set of ideas associated with the 'spatial turn', critical theory, the so-called 'heritage debate', and more recent theorisation of the 'anthropocene'.

The Accidental Countryside

Author : Stephen Moss
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'A superb naturalist and writer.' CHRIS PACKHAM 'From Stone Age remains to modern day skyscrapers, Stephen Moss takes us on an exhilarating journey through place and time, providing a fascinating insight into nature's relationship with environments created by man.' DR MYA-ROSE CRAIG (BIRDGIRL) Welcome to The Accidental Countryside. This is the fascinating and remarkably empowering story of our influence upon the landscape and wildlife of these crowded islands, and of how wildlife has co-opted its most unlikely corners - even when we least expected it. From the seabirds sheltering in the prehistoric stone structures of Shetland to the peat diggings in Somerset teeming with life, and from the rare insects hidden in Belfast's docklands to the falcons that make London's Shard their home, Stephen Moss reveals the unexpected oases which foster the crucial links in the chain that bind the natural world together.


Author : Richard Mabey
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Richard Mabey presents an in-depth look at beech trees - but also discusses numerous other issues, including global warming and the importance of trees in the landscape.

Town And Country

Author : Anthony Barnett
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It has become increasingly apparent that in Britain the relationship between town and country is breaking down and that both are in crisis: policies concerning urbanisation, industry, housing and transport are in disarray, while new issues have arisen concerning the environment, farming, the rural economy, food quality. . . In Town and Country, members of the Town and Country Forum, a body established in 1995 to bring together influential and thoughtful people concerned with this issue, explore the many-faceted problem of the relationship between urban and rural communities, providing both a focus for debate and an authoritative reference point for contemporary argument. The contributors include academics, philosophers, writers, political activists, environmentalists and other experts on urban and rural affairs. The result is a book of immense importance raising fundamental questions about the way we live now.

Contemporary Literary Landscapes

Author : Daniel Weston
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Writing landscapes inevitably occurs in dialogue with a long textual and pictorial tradition, but first-hand experience also provides key stimuli to many writers’ accounts. This monograph employs a comparative lens to offer an intervention in debates between literary scholars who focus on genre and those cultural geographers who are concerned that self-perpetuating literary tropes marginalize practical engagements. Suggesting that representation and experience are not competing paradigms for landscape, Daniel Weston argues that in the hands of contemporary writers they are complementary forces building composite articulations of place. In five case studies, Weston matches a writer to a mode of apprehending place - W.G. Sebald with picturing, Ciaran Carson with mapping, Iain Sinclair with walking, Robert Macfarlane with engaging, Kathleen Jamie with noticing. Drawing out a range of sites at which representation and experience interact, Weston's argument is twofold: first, interaction between traditions of landscape writing and direct experience of landscapes are mutually influential; and second, writers increasingly deploy style, form, and descriptive aesthetics to recover the experience of place in the poetics of the text itself. As Weston shows, emergent landscape writing shuttles across generic boundaries, reflecting the fact that the landscapes traversed are built out of a combination of real and imaginary sources.

British Literature in Transition 1940 1960 Postwar

Author : Gill Plain
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Examines debates central to postwar British culture, showing the pressures of reconstruction and the mutual implication of war and peace.

Haunted Spaces in Twenty First Century British Nature Writing

Author : Anneke Lubkowitz
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This study investigates the figure of haunting in the New Nature Writing. It begins with a historical survey of nature writing and traces how it came to represent an ideal of ‘natural’ space as empty of human history and social conflict. Building on a theoretical framework which combines insights from ecocriticism and spatial theory, the author explores the spatial dimensions of haunting and ‘hauntology’ and shows how 21st-century writers draw on a Gothic repertoire of seemingly supernatural occurrences and spectral imagery to portray ‘natural’ space as disturbed, uncanny and socially contested. Iain Sinclair and Robert Macfarlane are revealed to apply psychogeography’s interest in ‘hidden histories’ and haunted places to spaces associated with ‘wilderness’ and ‘the countryside’. Kathleen Jamie’s allusions to the Gothic are put in relation to her feminist re-writing of ‘the outdoors’, and John Burnside’s use of haunting is shown to dismantle fictions of ‘the far north’. This book provides not only a discussion of a wide range of factual and fictional narratives of the present but also an analysis of the intertextual dialogue with the Romantic tradition which enfolds in these texts.

Traditional Witchcraft for Urban Living

Author : Melusine Draco
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For the witch whose career confines them to an urban environment, regular Craft practice may often seem like a futile gesture, especially if home is a small, gardenless-flat. Even the suburbs can be magically incapacitating, if there is constant noise from traffic and neighbours. People work long hour without having the opportunity to notice the subtle changing of the seasons. Weekends are a constant battle with family, domestic chores and socialising. It’s no wonder that the urban witch has little time left for magical and spiritual development.Traditional Witchcraft for Urban Living deals with the constant barrage of psychic problems that confront the urban witch on a daily basis. Based on the teachings of a traditional Craft background, the author successfully manages to blend the Old Ways with practical contemporary practice. This book is part of the Traditional Witchcraft Series. Other titles in the series are Traditional Witchcraft for the Seashore(Jan 2012), Traditional Witchcraft for Fields and Hedgerows (Mar 2012) and Traditional Witchcraft for the Woods and Forests (Mar 2012).

The Cambridge Companion to British Fiction 1945 2010

Author : David James
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The Cambridge Companion to British Fiction since 1945 provides insight into the critical traditions shaping the literary landscape of modern Britain.

Urban Rambles

Author : Nicholas Rudd-Jones
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An illustrated city walking guide like no other. Whether you’re a city-dweller who wants to explore your home turf, or a keen country walker who likes the idea of trying something different, or a discerning weekend breaker who wants to get under the skin of a city in a day or two, Urban Rambles is the book to inspire you to get out and explore your nearest city on foot. Each of these 20 walks includes: a GPS enabled map configured for your mobile device specially commissioned illustrations of the route and walk data inspiring photographs of the things you will see along the way information on green spaces and architectural gems recommended cafes, pubs and independent shops England's cities have become much more walkable places in the last decade, with huge investments in green spaces, redevelopment of old industrial areas and a complete urban planning re-think in favour of pedestrians. Walking in a city is the healthy lifestyle choice, offering you the chance to exercise and the calming powers of green spaces. Choose from cathedral cities like York and Lincoln, seats of learning like Cambridge and Oxford, trading ports like Bristol and Liverpool, cities designed for pleasure like Brighton and Bath. Choose to visit Victorian industrial cities Manchester, Sheffield and Birmingham, and of course the nation’s capital, where a new 25-mile circular route takes you from urban regeneration through the Olympic Park and past rivers, parks and palaces.

News from Somewhere

Author : Roger Scruton
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Talks about the country dweller, who sees his or her world eroded by the wishy-washy liberal commands of Blairite do-gooders, who sit in North West London pontificating about the needs of country people. This book also deals with the devastations of the foot and mouth crisis that showed how the great divide between town and country dwellers.

The Suburbs

Author : Marie Bouchet
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The Suburbs: New Literary Perspectives places the suburbs firmly at the center of attention by focusing on those "places that thrive on disregard." By examining the suburbs across continental and cultural differences, this study shows how this liminal space also ushers in, albeit fleetingly, humane urbanity, or urban humanity.

The New Nature Writing

Author : Jos Smith
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This book is available as open access through the Bloomsbury Open Access programme and is available on In the last decade there has been a proliferation of landscape writing in Britain and Ireland, often referred to as 'The New Nature Writing'. Rooted in the work of an older generation of environment-focused authors and activists, this new form is both stylistically innovative and mindful of ecology and conservation practice. The New Nature Writing: Rethinking the Literature of Place connects these two generations to show that the contemporary energy around the cultures of landscape and place is the outcome of a long-standing relationship between environmentalism and the arts. Drawing on original interviews with authors, archival research, and scholarly work in the fields of literary geographies, ecocriticism and archipelagic criticism, the book covers the work of such writers as Robert Macfarlane, Richard Mabey, Tim Robinson and Alice Oswald. Examining the ways in which these authors have engaged with a wide range of different environments, from the edgelands to island spaces, Jos Smith reveals how they recreate a resourceful and dynamic sense of localism in rebellion against the homogenising growth of “clone town Britain.”

The Living World

Author : Samantha Walton
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Harnessing new enthusiasm for Nan Shepherd's writing, The Living World asks how literature might help us reimagine humanity's place on earth in the midst of our ecological crisis. The first book to examine Shepherd's writing through an ecocritical lens, it reveals forgotten details about the scientific, political and philosophical climate of early twentieth century Scotland, and offers new insights into Shepherd's distinctive environmental thought. More than this, this book reveals how Shepherd's ways of relating to complex, interconnected ecologies predate many of the core themes and concerns of the multi-disciplinary environmental humanities, and may inform their future development. Broken down into chapters focusing on themes of place, ecology, environmentalism, Deep Time, vital matter and selfhood, The Living World offers the first integrated study of Shepherd's writing and legacy, making the work of this philosopher, feminist, amateur ecologist, geologist, and innovative modernist, accessible and relevant to a new community of readers.

Writing the Rural

Author : Professor Paul J Cloke
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This book arises out of an ESRC project devoted to an examination of the economic, social and cultural impacts of the service class on rural areas. The research was an attempt to document these impacts through close empirical work in a set of three rural communities, but something happened on the way. The authors found that the rural became a real sticking point. Respondents used it in different ways - as a bludgeon, as a badge, as a barometer - to signify many different things - security, identity, community, domesticity, gender, sexuality, ethnicity - nearly always by drawing on many different sources - the media, the landscape, friends and kin, animals. It became abundantly clear that the rural, whatever chameleon form it took, was a prime and deeply felt determinant of the actions of many respondents. Yet it was also clear that to the authors they possessed no theoretical framework that could allow them to negotiate the rural to deconstruct its diverse nature as a category. Rather each of the extended essays in the book is an attempt by each author to draw out one aspect of the rural by drawing on different traditions in social and cultural theory.

City Wilds

Author : Terrell Dixon
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The assumptions we make about nature writing too often lead us to see it only as a literature about wilderness or rural areas. This anthology broadens our awareness of American nature writing by featuring the flora, fauna, geology, and climate that enrich and shape urban life. Set in neither pristine nor exotic environs, these stories and essays take us to rivers, parks, vacant lots, lakes, gardens, and zoos as they convey nature's rich disregard of city limits signs. With writings by women and men from cities in all regions of the country and from different ethnic traditions, the anthology reflects the geographic differences and multicultural makeup of our cities. Works by well-known and emerging contemporary writers are included as well as pieces from important twentieth-century urban nature writers. Since more than 80 percent of Americans now live in urban areas, we need to enlarge our environmental concerns to encompass urban nature. By focusing on urban nature writing, the selections in City Wilds can help develop a more inclusive environmental consciousness, one that includes both the nature we see on a day-to-day basis and how such nearby nature is viewed by writers from diverse cultural backgrounds.