Wallace stegner wilderness letter summary

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wallace stegner wilderness letter summary

The Sound of Mountain Water by Wallace Stegner

A book of timeless importance about the American West, our native home of hope.

The essays, memoirs, letters, and speeches in this volume were written over a period of twenty-five years, a time in which the West witnessed rapid changes to its cultural and natural heritage, and Wallace Stegner emerged as an important conservationist and novelist. This collection is divided into two sections: the first features the eloquent sketches of the Wests history and environment, directing our imagination to the sublime beauty of such places as San Juan and Glen Canyon; the concluding section examines the state of Western literature, of the mythical past versus the diminished present, and analyzes the difficulties facing any contemporary Western writer. The Sound of Mountain Water is at once a hymn to the Western landscape, an affirmation of the hope embodied therein, and a careful investigation to the Wests complex legacy.
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Wilderness Letter

Below is full text of Wallace Stegner's "Wilderness Letter," written to the Outdoor Recreation Resources Review Commission, and subsequently in his.
Wallace Stegner

Wallace Stegner’s Wilderness Letter

Explores the world through literature, movies, words, and quotes for the intellectually curious. By the s the development of the highway system resulted in a dramatic increase into automobile travel making parks more accessible to the public. It is as true and compelling today, as it was over 50 years ago — particularly in a world that has replaced real world experience with digitally created environments and entertainment. And so that never again can we have the chance to see ourselves single, separate, vertical and individual in the world, part of the environment of trees and rocks and soil, brother to the other animals, part of the natural world and competent to belong in it. Without any remaining wilderness we are committed wholly, without chance for even momentary reflection and rest, to a headlong drive into our technological termite-life, the Brave New World of a completely man-controlled environment.

Over a year career, Stegner wrote over 60 fiction and non-fiction books. Stegner also served as assistant to Stewart Udall, the secretary of the department of interior under President Kennedy. I believe that you are working on the wilderness portion of the Outdoor Recreation Resources Review Commission's report. If I may, I should like to urge some arguments for wilderness preservation that involve recreation, as it is ordinarily conceived, hardly at all. Hunting, fishing, hiking, mountain-climbing, camping, photography, and the enjoyment of natural scenery will all, surely, figure in your report. So will the wilderness as a genetic reserve, a scientific yardstick by which we may measure the world in its natural balance against the world in its man-made imbalance.

For a person to become whole, Stegner argues that the mere idea of the wild and the forests are to thank. The wilderness needs to be saved for the sake of the idea. He insinuates that anyone in America can just think of Old faithful, Mt. Rainier, or any other spectacular landform, even if they have not visited there, and brought to a calm. These thoughts he argues are what makes us as people whole.

Rating: Strong Essays.
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Literary Analysis of Into The Wild Imagine spending thirty days alone in a tent or a cabin in the wilderness with no technology, electricity, running water, and any form of communication. Every day you wake up to the sight of the beautiful, tall trees and the various wildlife living in the area. Most of the time, you can hear the many sounds of nature: the majestic songs of birds, the whistling in the wind, and trees rustling. But sometimes all you can hear is nothing but silence. Most of us. For a person to become whole, Stegner argues that the mere idea of the wild and the forests are to thank. The wilderness needs to be saved for the sake of the idea.

Stegner was a remarkable man who used his talents as a writer to speak passionately and honestly for the wildness in land and people. His voice and perspective were clear in his fiction, nonfiction, and personal actions. But, perhaps his work that has had the most lasting effect is the "Wilderness Letter" that he wrote in to the Outdoor Recreation Resources Review Commission:. Something will have gone out of us as a people if we ever let the remaining wilderness be destroyed; if we permit the last virgin forests to be turned into comic books and plastic cigarette cases; if we drive the few remaining members of the wild species into zoos or to extinction; if we pollute the last clear air and dirty the last clean streams and push our paved roads through the last of the silence, so that never again will Americans be free in their own country from the noise, the exhausts, the stinks of human and automotive waste. And so that never again can we have the chance to see ourselves single, separate, vertical and individual in the world, part of the environment of trees and rocks and soil, brother to the other animals, part of the natural world and competent to belong in it. Without any remaining wilderness we are committed wholly, without chance for even momentary reflection and rest, to a headlong drive into our technological termite-life, the Brave New World of a completely man-controlled environment.

1 thoughts on “The Sound of Mountain Water by Wallace Stegner

  1. He was usually the cattleprod that woke me from other preoccupations and from my workaholism and directed my attention to something important.

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