The Invention of Nature: Alexander Von Humboldt's New World


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A portrait of the German naturalist reveals his ongoing influence on humanity's relationship with the natural world today, discussing such topics as his views on climate change, conservation, and nature as a resource for all life.

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Anthony G

Mar 28, 2021

An interesting man, an OK book.

Humboldt was certainly an important scientist and an interesting fellow. Author Wulf traces the high-lights of his career, and even glossing over some areas, or making passing mention, it is still a pretty big book.

I don't understand the title, as Wulf doesn't make a convincing case that Humboldt fundamentally changed the way humankind and the planet interact- she is right that he saw how much human activity can change the environment before others did, but that lesson of his life seems to have been forgotten for a long time...making me doubt his work changed anything in the sciences.

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