09 October 2008

The Lost Amazon review by Denis Minev

The Lost Amazon: The Photographic Journey of Richard Evans Schultes
by Wade Davis
Edition: Hardcover
Availability: Out of Print--Limited Availability

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful:
Schultes was perhaps the greatest ethnobotanists of all time and definitely the father of the subject. In this book, his pupil (and today famed explorer) Wade Davis puts together a sampling of his photographs throughout his life in the Amazon, providing a visual context to the story about the great scientist and explorer. 

Schultes lived among indians for many years in the northwestern Amazon, in search for knowledge about its plants and their secrets. He uncovered many hallucinogenic plants in the process, which earned him a cult status in the 1970s. During his time with the indians, he was able to build strong relationships with the natives, which earned a position of respect and gave him the ability to explore their land and knowledge deeply. 

Schultes is one of the last great explorers who disconnected himself from the outside world for years in order to collect new specimens and search for more knowledge. Such figures are rare, if at existent in the modern world. He wrote many books about his travels, which would also make interesting reading, especially as they relat ehte knowledge he gathered. This is more of a coffee table type of book, with many pictures and less story. Having read one of his books, I appreciated seeing the pictures of his time in the Amazon.

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