Maps on end papers.
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Opening a radically new and original path into history, Simon Schama explores the scenery of our Western culture, both real landscapes and landscapes of the mind that have given us our sense of homeland, the dark woods of our imagined origins. What unfolds is a series of compelling journeys through space and time: from the ancient woodland of Poland, a symbol over the centuries of national endurance, through the forest birthplace of the German psyche, to the Big Trees of Yosemite that gave a new nation its holy past. Through all of history, from pre-classical antiquity to the Third Reich and beyond, Schama uncovers the myths and memories that have stamped themselves on our most basic social instincts and institutions: territorial identity, the wild and domestic, mortality and immortality.