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Academic & Professional Books  Environmental & Social Studies  Climate Change

Weather, Climate, Culture

Edited By: Sarah Strauss and Benjamin S Orlove
416 pages, Illus
Publisher: Berg Publishers
Weather, Climate, Culture
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  • Weather, Climate, Culture ISBN: 9781859736975 Paperback Nov 2003 Availability uncertain: order now to get this when available
  • Weather, Climate, Culture ISBN: 9781859736920 Hardback Nov 2003 Availability uncertain: order now to get this when available
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About this book

Throughout history, the weather has been both feared and revered for its powerful influence over living creatures. Not only does it control our moods, activities, and fashions, but it has also played a crucial role in broader issues of cultural identity, concepts of time, and economic development. In fact, the weather has become so ingrained in our everyday routines that many of us forget just how profoundly this omnipotent force shapes culture. With the continuing rise in global warming and consequential change in weather patterns, our awareness and understanding of this topic has never been so important. This fascinating book is the first to explore our close relationship with the weather. From folklore to visual representations, agricultural and health practices, and unusual weather events, Weather, Climate, Culture demonstrates that the way we discuss and interpret meteorological phenomena concerns not only the events in question but, more complexly, the cultural, political, and historical framework in which we discuss them. Why is it politically safe to discuss current weather conditions, but highly controversial to discuss long-term climate change? Why are the British renowned for talking about the weather and why, in the eighteenth century, was this regarded as genteel? How can accounts of cultural or moral change be associated with narratives of changing climate and vice-versa? Drawing on a wide range of case studies from around the world, this pioneering book provides an original and lively perspective on a subject that continues to have an incalculable impact on the way we live. It will serve as a landmark text for years to come.


Introduction1. Sarah Strauss and Ben OrloveUp in the Air: The Anthropology of Weather and ClimateDAYS2. Jan Golinski TIME, TALK, AND THE WEATHER IN EIGHTEENTH-CENTURY BRITAIN.3. Sarah Strauss Weather Wise: Speaking Folklore to Science in Leukerbad4. Michael Paolisso Chesapeake Bay Watermen, Weather and Blue Crabs: Cultural Models and Fishery Policies5. Todd Sanders (En)Gendering the Weather: Rainmaking and Reproduction in Tanzania6. Trevor Harley (U. Dundee, UK)Nice weather for the time of year: The British obsession with the weatherYEARS7. Ben Orlove HOW PEOPLE NAME SEASONS8. John Thornes and Gemma Wetherell Monet's 'London Series' and the Cultural Climate of London at the turn of the Twentieth Century9. David Ellis Changing Earth and Sky: Movement, Environmental Variability, and Responses to El Nino in the Pio-Tura Region of Papua New Guinea10. Carla Roncoli, Keith Ingram, Christine Jost, and Paul KirshenMeteorological Meanings: Farmers' Interpretations of Seasonal Rainfall Forecasts in Burkina Faso.GENERATIONS11. Tim Finan Climate Science and the Policy of Drought Mitigation in Ceara, Northeast Brazil12. Anne Henshaw CLIMATE AND CULTURE IN THE NORTH: THE INTERFACE OF ARCHAEOLOGY, PALEOENVIRONEMNTAL SCIENCE AND ORAL HISTORY13. Colin West and Marcela Vasquez-Leon Testing Farmers' Perceptions of Climate Variability: A Case Study from the Sulphur Springs Valley, Arizona14. Gisli Palsson and Astrid Ogilvie "It looks like unfavourable weather is brewing":Descriptions of weather in the Sagas of Icelanders Afterword15. Steven Rayner Domesticating Nature: Commentary on the Anthropological Study of Weather and Climate Discourse

Customer Reviews


Sarah Strauss Assistant Professor,University of Wyoming Benjamin S. Orlove Professor of Environmental Science and Policy, University of California, Davis and Adjunct Senior Research Scientist, International Research Institute for Climate Prediction, Columbia University,New York
Edited By: Sarah Strauss and Benjamin S Orlove
416 pages, Illus
Publisher: Berg Publishers
Media reviews
'Strauss and Orlove's lively and interesting text is a very welcome addition to the anthropological canon [that] immediately raises the question as to why such an important and fascinating aspect of human experience has previously been studied so little. It highlights the universal importance of weather to human societies, and the consequent potential for comparative analysis, thus connecting the work with a central theoretical issue for anthropologists.' Veronica Strang, Oceania 'This book provides serious thinking about the meaning and cultural significance of meteorology and climatology... The book is a powerful antidote to technocratic and scientific triumphalism.' David Bowman, Director of the Key Centre for Tropical Wildlife Management, Charles Darwin University, Darwin, in 'Bulletin of the American Meterological Society'
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