Penn State

Richard Stehouwer - professor of soil science, Penn State University Park

Book Title: Out of the Earth: Civilization and the Life of the Soil

Author: Daniel Hillel

Book Description:

I first read this book as a newly minted PhD and budding soil scientist. It had a more profound influence on my thinking and how I approached my career than did all the textbooks I labored through as a graduate student — including Daniel Hillel's classic soil physics textbook. In Out of the Earth Hillel traces how the demise of several great civilizations through the sweep of history can be connected to mismanagement and squandering of their soil resources. He follows this with several lessons for our modern civilization, which seems intent on repeating history. Reading this book deepened my reverence of this common stuff we call soil and compelled a career with a goal of keeping us from repeating this history.


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