Burning Season CL

Andrew C. Revkin, Author Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) $19.95 (317p) ISBN 978-0-395-52394-0
Mendes was one of 48 rural workers and activists slain during 1988 in the western Brazilian state of Acre. He belonged to a family whose livelihood was based on extracting products from the forest--tapping rubber and gathering Brazil nuts--without harming it. But national policy for the development of the Amazon brought highways, agriculture, ranching and wholesale destruction of the environment. Landowners hired gunmen to expel rubber tappers and kill those who stood in their way. Mendes organized the tappers to preserve the forest. Revkin, science writer for Discover magazine and the Los Angeles Times , presents a richly detailed account of that conflict and Mendes's rise to prominence as an environmentalist. This portrait of lawlessness in Acre makes the American Wild West seem tame--Mendes's murderers still have not been brought to trial--but progress in safeguarding the forest has been made. Since Mendes's death, three sizable reserves, including 18 rubber estates, have become federal property on which large-scale deforestation is banned. Illustrations. Author tour. (June)
Reviewed on: 06/05/1990
Release date: 06/01/1990
Paperback - 144 pages - 978-0-452-27405-1
Paperback - 344 pages - 978-1-55963-089-4
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