Population explosion, pollution, suburban sprawl, death of the city, the vanishing wilderness—we keep hearing of these threats but usually manage to ignore them. Propagandists, in their efforts to attract our attention, too often try to frighten us and succeed only in making us strengthen our defenses against listening. In this book we find instead a number of clear, calm discussions of environmental problems, providing information and ideas without excessive emotional appeal. Still the title shows that the editors expect readers to find ecology upsetting.
The 37 papers, chosen from a wide variety of journals, such as Human Biology, Daedalus, Landscape, American Scientist, are obviously intended for the nonspecialist intelligent reader. They are divided into five groups, of which the first deals with population problems, both human and animal. "The Environmental Encounter" is the title of a group of papers discussing man's reaction to his environment, what he sees, and the