"Walker has done in this book what essentially has never before been attempted by any other scholar for any other major American city: he has researched, analyzed, and narrated the evolving environmental politics of San Francisco from their origins in the nineteenth century to their explosive growth in the decades following the Second World War, right down to the present . . . A first-rate piece of scholarship."
-William Cronon, from the Foreword
"Richard Walker has written a sparkling history of the greening of the Bay Area that does much more than tell a fascinating untold story. In the tradition of Raymond Williams, The Country in the City throws the whole relationship between city and country into a fresh light, one that is not only bracing but which illuminates a path forward for green politics everywhere."
-Michael Pollan, author of The Omnivore's Dilemma and The Botany of Desire
"In dark times for those who care about the fate of the earth, here's some much needed sunlight from California: an inspiring and comprehensive account of green organizing in the Bay Area from John Muir to Carl Anthony and Urban Habitat."
-Mike Davis, author of Planet of Slums and In Praise of Barbarians
"Richard Walker's The Country in the City describes how fifty years of suburban developers, greenbelt alliances, grape-growers, dairy farmers, software startups, inner-city anti-toxics coalitions and others have shaped the San Francisco Bay Area as a patchwork of developed, reshaped, and protected space. This remarkable new classic also challenges not only conventional versions of the relationship between city and country, but the very definition of these two kinds of places."
-Rebecca Solnit, author of A Field Guide to Getting Lost
"This story has never been fully told, and Richard Walker, who lived many of the battles while teaching the next generation of warriors at UC Berkeley, has finally pulled the story together. There aren't many academic works from which a local activist can profitably learn-this is one of them."
-Carl Pope, Executive Director, Sierra Club
"Three cheers for Richard Walker's The Country in the City, as one of the first efforts to bring together a community-scale history of environmental activism and politics . . . . There is a wealth of information here, particularly pinpointing some of the specific individuals who spearheaded various activist campaigns to improve the area's environment."
"The Country in the City clearly and concisely relates the story of a major environmental success. That this was achieved through the diligent efforts of a concerned population should give hope to other such populations nationwide."
"Walker presents a highly readable case study of the San Francisco Bay Area. . . . An excellent book for all libraries, especially those with regional and environmentalist holdings. Highly recommended."
"The Country in the City is a masterful and much-needed chronicle of the Bay Area's diverse ecopolitical scene. It is a fruitful serendipity that such a rich and wonderful place has a scholar who, with intelligence and affection, can gracefully capture its green evolution."
"Walker makes our landscape come alive as the arena of an ongoing struggle to figure out how to live lightly and well in this remarkable corner of the planet."
"Meticulously and succinctly, Walker recounts the early vision and the prolonged determination that resulted in our precious - and all-too-rare - situation. He guides the reader through the first stirrings of environmental consciousness, which soon were followed by struggles to set aside preserves, then forestall depredations, and finally establish benign public policies to guide development and land management. After reading this book, even those who already possess a green tinge in their thinking will understand the promise and peril of modern times as never before."
-San Francisco Chronicle Outdoors
"Readers of The Country in the City will enjoy immersing themselves in the Bay Area's story. Readers will see that just as nature made this place, so did people- and it's up to people to keep doing so."
"In The Country in the City, a history of local conservation and environmental activism, Walker delivers a deeply loving paean to this place where he grew up and has lived and worked and been a political activist all of his life."
-San Francisco Chronicle Book Review