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Valuing the Alaskan Wilderness: The 19th Century Writings of John Muir and W.H. Dall


In the late 19th century, American conservation began to separate into two ideological approaches: scientific and spiritual. Two prominent naturalists, William Healey Dall and John Muir, who both expressed deep admiration for the land they explored during scientific expeditions and personal pilgrimages exemplify the origins of this division. In this project, I am researching how Dall and Muir experienced, valued, and described the Alaskan environment through public essays and personal journals. Using Muir and Dall as key figures, I am investigating how personal motivations inspired their valuing the land as a “wilderness,” a pristine place antithetical to civilization.

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Slane, Cecilia, "Valuing the Alaskan Wilderness: The 19th Century Writings of John Muir and W.H. Dall" (2019). Summer Research Symposium, The Leadership Alliance Digital Library. Brown Digital Repository. Brown University Library.



  • Summer Research Symposium

    Each year, Brown University showcases the research of its undergraduates at the Summer Research Symposium. More than half of the student-researchers are UTRA recipients, while others receive funding from a variety of Brown-administered and national programs and fellowships and go …
  • The Leadership Alliance Digital Library

    A collection of research presentations and posters created by students participating in the Leadership Alliance's Summer Research - Early Identification Program.

    When using this resource, please cite the digital object identifier (DOI) for the specific resource as well as the …