The Cycle of Life:
An History of Experimental Ecology

Kline Biology Tower
Sterling Memorial
Manuscripts & Archives
Kline Sciences
Medical Historical
Exhibit Map

Anna Bramwell, Ecology in the 20th Century: A History (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1989).

Anna Bramwell intended her book to be a history of Ecology in the 20th Century. It is, instead, a critical survey of how we explain or relationship to nature or "ecology" and its political implications. She argued "that today's Greens, in Britain, Europe and North America, have emerged from a politically radicalized ecologism, based on the shift from mechanistic to vitalist thought in the late nineteenth century." For her, ecology is "a political category, like socialism or conservativism." In this survey, Bramwell does discuss a number of scientific developments essential for understanding the history of ecology, for example Alexander von Humboldt's 18th century plant geography. She follows other historians, however, in describing the significance of this work as merely forming a platform for Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection.

Lloyd Ackert
Whitney Humanities Center
Yale University
53 Wall Street
P.O. Box 208298
New Haven, CT 06520
Office: (203).432.3112

The library is at the base of the Kline Tower at: