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Water, Culture, and Politics in Germany and the American West


Susan C. Anderson and Bruce H. Tabb

Germany and the American West share a keen interest in water ecology, an interest grounded in ideas about the place of nature in cultural identity. This volume provides examples of the ways that German and American cultural and environmental traditions have influenced attitudes about water usage and conservation. It investigates the connections between our changing notions of nature and the varied metaphors with which we represent water. The essays explore how images of water probe the boundaries between culture and nature, reflect fears of disease and sexuality, support concepts of collective identity, and help shape the ways we think about resource management.
Contents: Susan C. Anderson: Introduction: The Rhetorical Power of Water – John E. Davidson: «It’s a Nice Day for a Canoe Ride»: An Essay on Ecological Issues in Contemporary Culture – Marton Marko: From Clouds to Swamps: Cultural Dissolutions in Science and on Screen from Humboldt to Herzog – W. Scott McLean: The Jeweled Net of Water in Gary Snyder’s Mountains and Rivers without End – Karen R. Achberger: Rescue from Kesey’s «Great Notion»: The Healing Power of Water in Seghers, Frischmuth, and Bachmann – Sabine Wilke: Die Zähmung der grausamen Frau: Seelenlose Wasserkreaturen und ihre Welt des Imaginären – Siegfried Mews: Of Water Sprites, Drowned Maidens, and Omnipotent Fish: On Some (Mis)Representations of Water in German Postromantic Literary Texts – Ralph W. Buechler: Water, Exploration, and Liberation in the Essays of Georg Christoph Lichtenberg – Rita Gudermann: Between Scarcity and Abundance: Water and Agriculture in Nineteenth-Century Prussia – Christoph Bernhardt: The Correction of the Upper Rhine in the Nineteenth Century: Modernizing Society and State by Large-Scale Water Engineering – Dieter Schott: Remodeling «Father Rhine»: The Case of Mannheim 1825-1914 – Sandra Chaney: Water for Wine and Scenery, Coal and European Unity: Canalization of the Mosel River, 1950-1964 – Dennis Domer: Water Witching: Germans and the Magical Tradition on the Prairie Plains – Jeff R. Bremer: To Water the Valley: Irrigation, Canals, and the Alexander Commission – Dorothy Zeisler-Vralsted: Hydraulic Cities: The Urbanization of the Mid-Columbia Plateau.