The Paradoxal Compass is both historical narrative and environmental manifesto. Morpurgo compares our own tipping point with the ‘great unsettling’ faced by the Elizabethans more than four centuries ago. As the modern world continues to plunder the ‘infinite store’ of the earth’s riches, Morpurgo explores how our abusive relationship with the natural world began. He asks what the Age of Discovery might have to teach us in the current environmental crisis, as we too reappraise our place in the world.Read more
It’s a welcome oddity of a book, an old-fashioned discussion on a number of topics, from maps to maritime intrigue; from the birth of a new worldview under Elizabeth I to Cold War environmentalism; from passionate bird-watching to the creation of marine reserves in English waters.
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A gripping navigational narrative... a perfectly-formed treasure of a book.
Philip Hoare, author of Leviathan or the Whale