America's long debate about land use fascinates me. Since childhood, words like "river," "forest," "mountain," and "wild" moved me to explore their physical, intellectual, and spiritual meanings. Along the way, I filled crates with journals built by more words: wilderness, rhetorical, multiple use, apologia, Gaia, ethos, carrying capacity, mitigation, limits. Boxes grew into stacks; words accumulated subtle meanings based on long strings of stories.
By the time graduate school drew me to University of Oregon in 1979, my primary goal was to write a rhetorical history of land use. When it came to development of natural lands, I wondered almost daily, to what extent does persuasive language make a difference? A major in rhetoric and communication lent more structure to my understanding of language and land. Coaching a competitive debate program drove my interest to obsession. Writing mired it in context. More...
Dancing at Deer Rock:
200 Years of Native-White Relations in the Chilkat Valley
Read discussion drafts at sheldonmuseum.org