Gary Paul Nabhan

Packrats

THEMES: Definitions  |  WORKSHOP: Synthesis

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Biography

Gary Paul Nabhan

Gary Paul Nabhan grew up in the Indiana Dunes under the influence of his Lebanese relatives and great naturalists such as Henry Cowles, Donald Culross Peattie and Edwin Way Teale, and did his first "wilderness solo" there at the age of sixteen. After dropping out of high school and working at the Environmental Action national headquarters for the first Earth Day, he went West to Prescott College. It was there that he fell in love with both field biology and narrative natural history. He went on to the University of Arizona for a masters in agricultural botany and a PhD in arid lands resources, simultaneously working in ethnobiology, nature writing and conservation biology. He has published twenty-four books ranging from The Forgotten Pollinators to The Geography of Childhood to Coming Home to Eat. Nabhan currently lives in Patagonia, Arizona where he is involved in collaborative conservation of working landscapes, nectar corridor restoration for migratory pollinators, and genetic resource conservation of native and Mission-era Spanish and Arab food crops.

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Transcript

I always thought that we ourselves are much like packrats. We gather things up and don't quite know where that little piece of evidence will fit later on. But somehow it fits into our household of ideas and is one element of how we put that mosaic, that puzzle, together – of what the past was like and what kinds of changes have occurred on our home ground.

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