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Josh of the Bushveld
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Book recommendations

Unread post by Josh of the Bushveld » Fri Oct 02, 2009 12:45 pm

Hi all, a topic to discuss which books we can recommend to each other (geology, astronomy, atmosphere etc).
I've read (and own) the following and can definitely recommend:

Stargazing from game reserves in Southern Africa - Fairall - Struik
I found this a very good beginner's introductory book. Has the 'big 5' constellations, a little bit of mythology and decent star charts.

The Story Of Earth & Life: A Southern African Perspective on a 4.6-Billion-Year Journey - McCarthy, Rubidge - Struik
A great introduction to earth sciences, geology and a bit of evolution theory and paleo-anthropology. Written by two Wits professors. Has a lot of very good graphics.

Geological Journeys - Gorman, Whitfield, Struik
Descriptions of major geological features to be found on major highways and major cities in SA. Also has a very good geological map. Very useful for trips.

Teach Yourself: Geology - Rothery - Teach Yourself Books
A nice introduction to geology. I'd recommend.

I've also read the following but wouldn't necessarily recommend:
Geology: A Self-Teaching Guide by Murck (Wiley). I didn't find too much in this book that wasn't in the other two I've discussed above. The graphics are all black and white and hand-drawn. This book also uses some conflicting terminology.

South Africa's Mining and Geological Heritage by Viljoen & Reimold (Mintek).
This book is out of print but highly recommended by a lot of other people. If you want to sell me yours, PM me! :)

Teach Yourself: Weather by Inness (Teach Yourself Books)
I'd like to learn more about weather systems since I don't really understand them too well. I've paged through this in bookstores and it looks quite good.

The Field Guide to Geology By Lambert (Checkmark Books)
I've gone through this book in the library. It has plenty of great graphics that explain geological systems and processes.

What books would you recommend for beginners?
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Re: Book recommendations

Unread post by bentley » Mon Nov 09, 2009 11:22 pm

For people situated in Southern Africa and interested in Astronomy,

Sky Guide Africa South 2009 - It was prepared by the Astronomical Society of South Africa, it has loads of information on planets, comets and much more. It gives clear descriptions as to how to find mentioned objects and diagrams to assist you in the search, additional info such as eclipses and the likes have been included in this practical book.
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Re: Book recommendations

Unread post by Oryx » Wed Nov 18, 2009 6:42 pm

Has anyone read "A Sand County Almanac" by Aldo Leopold? Do yourselves a favour. It is a classic by one of the world`s great naturalists. He argues that "the basic fallacy in conservation lies in the attempt to justify solely on economic grounds what is really a philosophical concept: the extension of ethics from people to land".

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Re: Book recommendations

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Sat Nov 21, 2009 8:18 am

In a similar vein, the books of Ivan Illich and Erich Schumacher remain ground breaking and thought provoking. They both tackle the questionable ethics and paragmatism of capitalist consumption. They look at the underlying assumptions around what we now term consumerism and turn our assumptions on its head.

I remember Shumacher's concern that we were treating our natural resourses as "expenditure" rather than "capital". It is a mistake still being made. Just look at the proposed mining at Mapungubwe.

For anyone interested in philospophy and ethics, these are musts.
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