Hardback
July 13, 2021
9780295749037
English
288
14 b&w illus., 1 map
9.00 Inches (US)
6.00 Inches (US)
1.2 Pounds (US)
$99.00 USD, £79.00 GBP
v2.1 Reference
Paperback / softback
July 13, 2021
9780295749150
English
288
14 b&w illus., 1 map
9.00 Inches (US)
6.00 Inches (US)
.9 Pounds (US)
$30.00 USD, £23.99 GBP
v2.1 Reference

Wetlands in a Dry Land

More-Than-Human Histories of Australia's Murray-Darling Basin

By Emily O'Gorman
Foreword by Paul S. Sutter, Series edited by Paul S. Sutter
In the name of agriculture, urban growth, and disease control, humans have drained, filled, or otherwise destroyed nearly 87 percent of the world's wetlands over the past three centuries. Unintended consequences include biodiversity loss, poor water quality, and the erosion of cultural sites, and only in the past few decades have wetlands been widely recognized as worth preserving. Emily O'Gorman asks, What has counted as a wetland, for whom, and with what consequences?

Using the Murray-Darling Basin—a massive river system in eastern Australia that includes over 30,000 wetland areas—as a case study and drawing on archival research and original interviews, O'Gorman examines how people and animals have shaped wetlands from the late nineteenth century to today. She illuminates deeper dynamics by relating how Aboriginal peoples acted then and now as custodians of the landscape, despite the policies of the Australian government; how the movements of water birds affected farmers; and how mosquitoes have defied efforts to fully understand, let alone control, them. Situating the region's history within global environmental humanities conversations, O'Gorman argues that we need to understand wetlands as socioecological landscapes in order to create new kinds of relationships with and futures for these places.

About the Authors

Emily O'Gorman is senior lecturer at Macquarie University.

Reviews

"By focusing in on those key wetlands as case studies, O'Gorman plots a rather more open-ended story-map that draws out the Basin's water-management, from Deep Time to the present day. It enlarges the scale of its history to include the more-than-human world; it registers the aspirations as well as the inconsistencies of 'progress' and 'sustainability' and it gives rich, place-based readings that help us understand how we got here."—History Australia

"While focused on a single region, this globallyrelevant work makes a good contribution to the literature concerning wetland ecosystems."—Choice

"[T]his book mounts a new kind of multi-directional critique of modern conservation science that expands our understandings of ecological agency and colonial biopolitics. It depicts a world of nature and culture in relationship, offering a sensitive environmental history of the Murray-Darling Basin and of the diverse socioecological relationships grounded therein."—Australian Historical Studies

"Engangingly written and ambitious in its scope, Wetlands in a Dry Land adds complexity and nuance to our understanding of wetlands."—Bulletin of the Pacific Circle

Endorsements

"Clearly developed from deep research and long familiarity with these places as well as close conversations with many people along these waterways, this lucid, moving, and beautifully written book is a great achievement."—Heather Goodall, University of Technology Sydney

"Superb. An important contribution to the water and wetland history of Australia and of interest to scholars focusing on water in arid lands elsewhere in the world."—Robert Wilson, author of Seeking Refuge: Birds and Landscapes of the Pacific Flyway

9780295749037 : wetlands-in-a-dry-land-ogorman-sutter-sutter
Hardback
288 Pages
$99.00 USD
9780295749150 : wetlands-in-a-dry-land-ogorman-sutter-sutter
Paperback / softback
288 Pages
$30.00 USD

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