For conservationists of all hues

A View from the Machan: How Science can Save the Fragile Predator By Ullas Karanth New Delhi Permanent Black

The 1980s and 1990s saw a profusion of natural history writing by eminent Indian naturalists such as M Krishnan, E R C Davidar and Valmik Thapar. But scientists such as E O Wilson or John Terborgh, who could effectively communicate the scientific understanding of the workings of nature to the layperson, are still few in India. Popular writing by biologists remained a neglected area in India for a long time. However, a recent trend in biology writing, pioneered by the Indian publishing house Permanent Black through its Ecology series, seems to be picking up steam. An example of such writing were seen in the 2003 book Battles Over Nature that brought together social scientists and biologists on controversial politics and science of conservation. A View from the Machan by the well-known biologist Ullas Karanth is another welcome addition to this genre. What scientists can bring to such writing is the scientific understanding of eological structure and function