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Citizen Scientist

Gearing up for the September 6 release of my new book, this website is being redesigned at the moment by the wonderful Nancy Freeborn. I’m still in the pupa stage yet feel those unfurling butterfly wings in my stomach. Grateful for very thoughtful pre-publication support from writers and scientists:

“The idea that science is something for a caste of high priests to attend to is simply wrong: Science is all around us, and we each can revel in its pleasures and processes. This is a lovely, empowering narrative.”

Bill McKibben, author of Eaarth

“What an extraordinary book! Mary Ellen Hannibal weaves together natural history, cutting-edge technology, and her own adventures into a story that is certain to inspire.” —Amy Stewart, author of The Drunken Botanist.

“Deeply informed and highly readable, this is as much a soul-search as a book about science. Fortunately for us, Mary Ellen Hannibal locates some luminous souls who, by the light of their knowledge and determination, can lead us out of these dark times for life on Earth.”— Carl Safina, author of Beyond Words; What Animals Think and Feel

“Species are going extinct a thousand times faster than they should, our science tells us. But how do we know which, and where, any why, and above all what we can do about this crisis? No expensive technological machine counts biodiversity. Our knowledge comes globally, across decades, and from every land and sea, from the ‘citizen scientist.’ That’s you and me, our kids, grandkids, and friends, armed with a notebook or perhaps a smartphone, but with those priceless and essential attributes of passion and curiosity. This book tells their story brilliantly.”

Stuart Pimm, Doris Duke Professor of Conservation, Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke University

“One of Hannibal’s themes in this ambitious new book is the ‘double narrative,’ or the contradiction between what we tell ourselves we are doing every day and what is really going on. She explains that empires have been built on a biotic cleansing of species the loss of which now threatens the very foundation of our lives. Hannibal poses citizen science, or the contribution of amateurs to research, as a platform not only for change, but also as a new way of seeing without the old blinders. Invoking literary, historic, and scientific touchstones, and telling a personal story as well, she provides what citizen scientists John Steinbeck and Ed Ricketts called the ‘toto picture.’ We can’t afford to see the Earth any other way.”

Paul Ehrlich, Bing Professor of Population Studies, Stanford University.

“An informative, emotional, and fascinating account of a personal journey to ecological citizen science.”

Muki Haklay, Professor of Geographical Information Science, Co-Director of the Extreme Citizen Science Group, University College London

“Hannibal tracks science projects from the bottom up, co-created practical sciences in the hands and souls of lovers – amateurs – who give hope in our urgent times. This is a book full of the stories of those who care and teach others to care for a wounded earth, in real places. It is a collaboration forged in hope and rooted in hard work and hard histories. These are Pacific tides and renewing fires that may yet wash and burn over the land in blessings for still possible futures. The colonial hero may yet become a citizen of this kind of world, where the indigenous continue to refuse extinction and practice renewal. The condor is watching while the throat of the hummingbird flames.”

Donna Haraway, Distinguished Professor Emerita, University of California at Santa Cruz. Author of Staying with the Trouble: Making Kin in the Chthulucene.

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