Telling Our Way to the Sea

A Voyage of Discovery in the Sea of Cortez by Aaron Hirsh

  • Published: Jul 31, 2020

A luminous and revelatory journey into the science of life and the depths of the human experience By turns epic and intimate, Telling Our Way to the Sea is both a staggering revelation of unraveling ecosystems and a profound meditation on our changing... read more

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Details of Telling Our Way to the Sea

Exact title of the book
Telling Our Way to the Sea
Book author
Aaron Hirsh
ISBN
9781429947930
Publisher
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Published
Aug 06, 2013
Language
English
Format
PDF, FB2, EPUB, MOBI
Pages
416
File size (in PDF)
3744 kB

Some brief overview of book

A luminous and revelatory journey into the science of life and the depths of the human experience By turns epic and intimate, Telling Our Way to the Sea is both a staggering revelation of unraveling ecosystems and a profound meditation on our changing relationships with natureand with one another. When the biologists Aaron Hirsh and Veronica Volny, along with their friend Graham Burnett, a historian of science, lead twelve college students to a remote fishing village on the Sea of Cortez, they come upon a bay of dazzling beauty and richness. But as the group pursues various threads of investigationecological and evolutionary studies of the sea, the desert, and their various species of animals and plants; the stories of local villagers; the journals of conquistadors and explorersthey recognize that the bay, spectacular and pristine though it seems, is but a ghost of what it once was.

Life in the Sea of Cortez, they realize, has been reshaped by complex human ideas and decisionsthe laws and economics of fishing, property, and water; the dreams of developers and the fantasies of tourists seeking the wild; even efforts to retrieve species from the brink of extinctionall of which have caused dramatic upheavals in the ecosystem. It is a painful realization, but the students discover a way forward. After weathering a hurricane and encountering a rare whale in its wake, they come to see that the bay's best chance of recovery may in fact reside in our own human stories, which can weave a compelling memory of the place.

Glimpsing the intricate and ever-shifting web of human connections with the Sea of Cortez, the students comprehend anew their own place in the natural worldsuspended between past and future, teetering between abundance and loss. The redemption in their difficult realization is that as they find their places in a profoundly altered environment, they also recognize their roles in the path ahead, and ultimately come to see one another, and themselves, in a new light. In Telling Our Way to the Sea, Hirsh's voice resounds with compassionate humanity, capturing the complex beauty of both the marine world he explores and the people he explores it with.

Vibrantly alive with sensitivity and nuance, Telling Our Way to the Sea transcends its genre to become literature.

About author

Hirsh is chair of the Vermilion Sea Institute. He is a research associate in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Colorado-Boulder, and his essays have appeared in literary journals, The New York Times, and The Best American Science Writing. Hirsh cofounded the biotechnology company InterCell and serves on the board of Roberts and Company Publishers.

He lives in Boulder, Colorado.

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