Rain: A Natural and Cultural History

Rain: A Natural and Cultural History

Cynthia Barnett

Rain is elemental, mysterious, valuable, destructive.
it's the topic of numerous poems and work; the head of the elements file; the resource of the world's water. but this is often the 1st booklet to inform the tale of rain.

Cynthia Barnett's Rain begins 4 billion years in the past with the torrents that crammed the oceans, and builds to the storms of weather switch. It weaves jointly science—the real form of a raindrop, the mysteries of frog and fish rains—with the human tale of our ambition to manage rain, from historical rain dances to the 2,203 miles of levees that try to straitjacket the Mississippi River. It bargains a glimpse of our "founding forecaster," Thomas Jefferson, who measured each drizzle lengthy earlier than sleek meteorology. centuries later, wet skies could support encourage Morrissey’s mopes and Kurt Cobain’s grunge. Rain is additionally a travelogue, taking readers to Scotland to inform the miraculous tale of the waterproof coat raincoat, and to India, the place villagers extract the odor of rain from the monsoon-drenched earth and switch it into perfume.

Now, after hundreds of thousands of years spent praying for rain or worshiping it; burning witches on the stake to prevent rain or sacrificing babies to carry it; mocking rain with irrigated agriculture and towns in-built floodplains; even attempting to blast rain out of the sky with mortars intended for conflict, humanity has ultimately controlled to alter the rain. in simple terms now not in methods we meant. As weather swap upends rainfall styles and unleashes more and more serious storms and drought, Barnett indicates rain to be a unifying strength in a fractured global. an excessive amount of and never approximately sufficient, rain is a talk we percentage, and it is a e-book for everybody who has ever skilled it.

From the Hardcover edition.

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