The University of Wisconsin Press

Biography / Environment


Aldo Leopold
His Life and Work
Curt Meine
With a new preface by the author and an appreciation
by Wendell Berry

“An excellent, full-length biography of a figure central to the environmental history of the United States.”

This biography of Aldo Leopold follows him from his childhood as a precocious naturalist to his profoundly influential role in the development of conservation and modern environmentalism in the United States. This edition includes a new preface by author Curt Meine and an appreciation by acclaimed Kentucky writer and farmer Wendell Berry.

“Of all the conservationists who have preceded us, Leopold was the most radical, the most complete, and therefore the most needed. . . . Because his writing has, to such an extent, the quality of his character, and because his character was so much that of a conservationist, it is particularly needful that we should know the story of his life. Curt Meine has supplied this need, and he helps us to see clearly how Leopold’s writing originated in his life. . . . Leopold was indistinguishably a man of words and a man of deeds, and we see this more clearly in Meine’s biography than in Leopold’s writings.” —Wendell Berry, from the appreciation

“Aldo Leopold is laboriously researched, masterfully synthesized, and felicitously written. . . . Through Meine’s fascinating and lively narrative, we can at last . . . become better acquainted with one of the most important minds in the history of conservation.”
The Bloomsbury Review

“At this time no writer is better situated in place or time than Meine to understand and to put into practice Leopold’s ideas about man and nature. . . .Meine’s biography of Leopold remains our best account of Leopold’s exemplary evolving ethical journey.”
im Ballowe, North Dakota Quarterly
Fall 2009

Curt D. Meine is director for conservation biology and history with the Center for Humans and Nature, senior fellow with the Aldo Leopold Foundation, research associate with the International Crane Foundation, and associate adjunct professor at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. He is coeditor of The Essential Aldo Leopold, also published by the University of Wisconsin Press.

Media & bookseller inquiries regarding review copies, events, and interviews can be directed to the publicity department at or (608) 263-0734. (If you want to examine a book for possible course use, please see our Course Books page. If you want to examine a book for possible rights licensing, please see Rights & Permissions.)

The cover of this book features a photo of Aldo Leopold, and mentions the appreciation by Wendell Berry.

October 2010

LC: 87-40367 QH
676 pp.   6 x 9   33 b/w illus.

Book icon Paper $29.95 t
ISBN 978-0-299-24904-5
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“This is a story well worth reading and, happily, it’s good fun to boot. The author has skillfully captured Leopold the man, the scientist, the philosopher —furthermore, anyone who begins to read it will soon be captured, too.”
—Gaylord Nelson, former U.S. Senator and founder of Earth Day

“Meine has done a masterful job in presenting to his reader the family man, sportsman, natural resource manager, administrator, professor, philosopher, and poet.”
Western Historical Quarterly

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Updated November 23, 2011

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