For a tree, life after death isn’t just a hope but a reality. This is a book about forests; forest nature, species diversity and people; about the span from the millimetric perspective of an insect’s short life to the miles-wide expanses of sylvan landscapes where our exploitation of forests has shaped cultures and societies over hundreds of years. The book offers readers an insight into a profoundly fascinating ecosystem, and give them a basis for understanding the role forests play in today’s nature and climate crisis.
The first chapter describes the characteristics of a forest. The next deals with forest fires and storms. A third chapter looks at one of the most living things in the forest: dead trees. In the fourth you’ll find examples of strange and surprising interactions between dead trees and other species. The fifth chapter is about how it isn’t always easy to be a rare species in the forest, while chapter six hops like a hare through history, showing how timber has been used over the centuries. The seventh chapter covers ecosystem services other than timber. In chapter eight, we roam through the cultural undergrowth, defined as all the aspects of forests that rouse emotions and inspire expansive thoughts – be they myths, beliefs, pictures, books or just forests themselves. The ninth chapter is devoted to the ongoing debate about forests, before we round off with the tenth chapter, which is all about time, perspective and the shifting baselines in the forest.
“No book I have read on the subject in recent years resembles “SKOGEN” by Anne Sverdrup-Thygeson. The book is a masterpiece of popular science.”
“Wonderful and Terrifying. Anne Sverdrup-Thygeson’s book about the forest should be obligatory reading in every home.”