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Download Rivers: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) by Nick Middleton PDF

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By Nick Middleton

Rivers have acted as cradles for civilization and brokers of catastrophe; a river could be a barrier or a road, it could possibly help alternate and sediment, tradition and clash.

This Very brief creation is a party of rivers in all their variety. Geographer Nick Middleton covers a large and eclectic diversity of river-based topics, from actual geography to mythology, to commercial heritage and literary feedback. providing a really international examine rivers, with examples from all continents, together with Egypt, India, and Bangladesh, Middleton considers the function that rivers have performed in human background from settlements and exchange to conflict, and in addition appears to be like on the human effect upon rivers through the development of dams and slicing of channels.

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Rivers: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)

Rivers have acted as cradles for civilization and brokers of catastrophe; a river could be a barrier or a street, it might probably help exchange and sediment, tradition and clash.

This Very brief creation is a party of rivers in all their variety. Geographer Nick Middleton covers a large and eclectic diversity of river-based topics, from actual geography to mythology, to business background and literary feedback. providing a very worldwide examine rivers, with examples from all continents, together with Egypt, India, and Bangladesh, Middleton considers the function that rivers have performed in human heritage from settlements and alternate to battle, and in addition appears on the human influence upon rivers through the development of dams and slicing of channels.

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Extra resources for Rivers: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)

Sample text

Real men, it seems, don’t need gauntlets to hold falcons. football team: The Atlanta Falcons was her suggestion. Her rationale pushed parallels between birds and football players to ludicrous and delightful heights. ‘The Falcon is proud and dignified’, she wrote, ‘with great courage and fight. It never drops its prey. ’9 The notion of falcon as Ur-football player might stretch the symbolic functionality of falcons a little far. But it’s par for the course; falcons have been used to naturalize such a vast panoply of concepts that it’s almost impossible to see where the bird ends and the image begins.

The Hungarian Turul perched next to the souls of unborn children in the form of birds. As befits shamans with falcon ancestors, shamans can become a falcon on their journeys. Singing chants in honour of the stars, for A Crow Indian painted shield cover from Montana with an image of the warrior’s protecting genius, the prairie falcon, and an attached bundle of prairie falcon feathers. 55 example, Malekula shamans spread their arms to imitate a falcon. And according to North American Plains Indians the falcon was the only animal that knew the location of the hole in the sky through which it could reach God.

Recent studies 29 indicate that a strong genetic component is involved in the development of migratory behaviour in birds, but an external reason is often straightforwardly apparent for falcon migrations: food. In Kyrgyzstan, sakers move down from the Tien Shan mountains with the first snowfalls in late summer, following their prey to the plains below. Rocky Mountain prairie falcons move to higher altitudes in summer because their main prey at lower levels, Townsend’s ground squirrel, hides underground to escape the baking heat.

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