Category Archives: nature writers

Nature writing @ Woodfordia

So, what is nature writing anyway? It’s a question I’m often asked and one I’ll be answering this  long weekend at The Planting, the funky festival at Woodfordia. The Planting began as a project to regenerate the site of the Woodford Folk festival in … Continue reading

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Watermark Literary Muster 18-20 October

If anyone can get along to the Watermark Literary Muster at lovely Port Macquarie later this month, it’s a great festival celebrating Australian nature writing. This year’s theme is The Nature of Place and Childhood, and guests include Bruce Pascoe, … Continue reading

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E.J. Banfield: man writes island

One of Australia’s most significant (and successful) early nature writers was Edmund James Banfield (1852-1923). Born in England, Banfield followed in his father’s footsteps and became a journalist, initially in Melbourne and Sydney but then in Townsville, where he became sub-editor of … Continue reading

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Audubon

Last but by no means least of the great naturalists who forged a path for nature writing was John James Audubon (1785-1851). He was a colourful character, which is reflected in his illustrations and writings. The illegitimate son of a … Continue reading

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Alexander Wilson: Father of American Ornithology

The second of the three great naturalists who influenced the development of American nature writing was Alexander Wilson. In 1794, aged twenty-eight, Wilson emigrated from Scotland, where he had been a none-too-successful weaver, reformer, painter and peddler and poet. Wilson scored a … Continue reading

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William Bartram

Three early American natural history writers had a particular influence on the development of nature writing: William Bartram, Alexander Wilson and John James Audubon. As Romanticism shifted the emphasis from the physical qualities of the landscape to the feelings it engendered in … Continue reading

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Gilbert White’s A Natural History of Selbourne

Gilbert White believed that those who study “only one district are much more likely to advance natural knowledge than those that grasp at more than they can possibly be acquainted with: every kingdom, every province, should have its own monographer.”
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