Paper instructions: Read: Joseph L. Sax, Mountains Without Handrails, Reflections on the National Parks Robert Keller, “Lac La Croix: Rumor, Rhetoric and Reality in Indian Affairs” Sax argues that the purpose of parks is ultimately spiritual and that they should not be compromised by commercialization and paternalism. This book was published more than 40 years ago. Is it still relevant? Write a response as in Lesson One. Joseph Sax died in the spring of 2014. Consider: In April, 1998, a party of six backpacked five days in the Grand Canyon. Park entrance and trail fees came to nearly $150. Given Sax’s conclusions, can this be justified? Does a user fee policy have an implicit racial and economic bias, and is any such bias new, or does it continue the reality of the past? Also read the article on Lac La Croix in the syllabus. How do you compare this viewpoint with Sax’s? What, if any, dilemmas in park management do you find? How would Sax resolve them? Do you think Canada differs from the U.S. in this regard? Should we and Canada exempt native people from conservation regulations? What were the competing values in this controversy? How would you resolve the dispute? What did you learn about Dr. Keller? Writing, grammar, and spelling will be evaluated as well as content. Rough drafts should be complete and spell-checked. Papers must be typed and double spaced. Sources of information must be cited. You can assume I have read any assigned book and need not be informed of its contents. I do, however, require evidence that you have read the book. This is best done by being specific in illustrating your points. A good book review answers questions: Is the book clearly written? What are the authors’ attitudes, biases, assumptions, purpose, and style? The major theses, interpretations, and conclusions? What new material/information did you learn about parks? Where did you agree or disagree? Why? How does the book compare with your previous knowledge? How well is the book documented? Does the author consider conflicting evidence, and do so fairly? Did the reading change your mind about national parks, the NPS, or how we can (or should we?) protect and preserve natural reserves? For whom is the book written? To whom would you recommend it? Does the publisher help readers by printing, maps, charts, photos, source notes? A good book review is a trialogue between you, the author, and me.

Joseph L. Sax’s book “Mountains Without Handrails” was published more than 40 years ago. Despite that fact, its position and assumptions on how nature should be interacted with are still relevant today. The reason it is relevant in contemporary times is that many people, just like those from 40 years ago, still fail to understand nature’s essence and how to appreciate what it has to offer fully. It could be because we are heavily dependent on gadgets and machinery that we forget to acknowledge nature’s bounty and end up destroying it so that we can create more illusions of comfort

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