The Dawn of Green: Manchester, Thirlmere, and Modern Environmentalism (Paperback)

The Dawn of Green: Manchester, Thirlmere, and Modern Environmentalism By Harriet Ritvo Cover Image

The Dawn of Green: Manchester, Thirlmere, and Modern Environmentalism (Paperback)

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Located in the heart of England’s Lake District, the placid waters of Thirlmere seem to be the embodiment of pastoral beauty. But under their calm surface lurks the legacy of a nineteenth-century conflict that pitted industrial progress against natural conservation—and helped launch the environmental movement as we know it. Purchased by the city of Manchester in the 1870s, Thirlmere was dammed and converted into a reservoir, its water piped one hundred miles south to the burgeoning industrial city and its workforce. This feat of civil engineering—and of natural resource diversion—inspired one of the first environmental struggles of modern times. The Dawn of Green re-creates the battle for Thirlmere and the clashes between conservationists who wished to preserve the lake and developers eager to supply the needs of a growing urban population. Bringing to vivid life the colorful and strong-minded characters who populated both sides of the debate, noted historian Harriet Ritvo revisits notions of the natural promulgated by romantic poets, recreationists, resource managers, and industrial developers to establish Thirlmere as the template for subsequent—and continuing—environmental struggles.

Harriet Ritvo is the Arthur J. Conner Professor of History at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and author of The Platypus and the Mermaid, and Other Figments of Classifying Imagination and The Animal Estate: The English and Other Creatures in the Victorian Age.


Product Details ISBN: 9780226720869
ISBN-10: 0226720861
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication Date: June 28th, 2012
Pages: 248
Language: English