One Earth: People of Color Protecting Our Planet

Anuradha Rao. Orca, $24.95 paper (208p) ISBN 978-1-4598-1886-6
In this series of profiles, Rao, a conservation biologist who notes that “at work, I’ve usually been the only one with a brown face,” centers the stories of 20 environmental activists, all people of color. Rao’s prose is plain, but the activists’ stories are extraordinary, from Dipani Sutaria’s quest to encourage the study and protection of India’s Irrawaddy dolphins, to Ghanimat Azhdari’s use of mapping as a tool for empowering Iran’s nomadic tribes, to Lucassie Arragutainaq’s work using traditional Inuit and Cree knowledge in environmental assessments. Throughout, the activists’ culture and backgrounds are presented as invaluable assets that have given them authority to act and the ability to bridge differences. Photographs, facts, and calls to action enliven the text; bolded terms (“social justice,” “unceded”) appear in a glossary. Taken together, it’s a powerful answer to Rao’s framing questions: “Who is an environmental defender? What does she or he look like? Maybe like you. Maybe like me.” Ages 12–up. (Apr.)
Reviewed on : 03/05/2020
Release date: 04/07/2020
Genre: Children's
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