The book that launched environmental history now updated.
Winner of the Francis Parkman Prize
In this landmark work of environmental history, William Cronon offers an original and profound explanation of the effects European colonists' sense of property and their pursuit of capitalism had upon the ecosystems of New England. Reissued here with an updated afterword by the author and a new preface by the distinguished colonialist John Demos, Changes in the Land, provides a brilliant inter-disciplinary interpretation of how land and people influence one another. With its chilling closing line, "The people of plenty were a people of waste," Cronon's enduring and thought-provoking book is ethno-ecological history at its best.
“Changes in the Land exemplifies, and realizes, the promise of ecological history with stunning effect. Setting his sights squarely on the well-worn terrain of colonial New England, [Cronon] fashions a story that is fresh, ingenious, compelling and altogether important. His approach is at once vividly descriptive and profoundly analytic.” —John Demos, The New York Times Book Review
“A superb achievement: Cronon has changed the terms of historical discourse regarding colonial New England.” —Wilcomb E. Washburn, director of the Office of American Studies, Smithsonian Institution
“A cogent, sophisticated, and balanced study of Indian-white contact. Gracefully written, subtly argued, and well informed, it is a work whose implications extend far beyond colonial New England.” —Richard White, Michigan State University
“This is ethno-ecological history at its best . . . American colonial history will never be the same after this path-breaking, exciting book.” —Wilbur R. Jacobs, University of California, Santa Barbara
“A brilliant performance, from which all students of early American history will profit.” —Edmund S. Morgan, Yale University