“In this beautifully illustrated work, Pietro Laureano shares with us the fruits of more than a quarter of a century of careful observation of traditional knowledge and techniques applied to urban settlements and landscape resources management in all regions of the world. The book introduces us to very sophisticated, thousand-year-old, capacities developed by local communities and civilizations around the world, amongst which water harvesting techniques, recycling of organic wastes and used waters for soil fertility conservation or, in more general terms, the ecosystemic approach to town planning, are anything but new! The volume is also the most convincing illustration of the fact that, whereas modern technological solutions rely on separation and specialization and for most of the time imply the mobilization of external resources, traditional knowledge, which by its very nature applies the principle of integration and uses internal renewable inputs, has proved over time to be effective in the daily struggle of civilizations against adverse environments and, more recently, against desertification.”–Howard Moore, Director Unesco Regional Bureau for
Science in Europe (ROSTE)
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Evolution of Water Supply Through the Millennia
The Tunnels of Cu Chi is a book written by Tom Mangold & John Penycate in 1985 focusing on a specific aspect of the Vietnam war which lead the U.S. Army to loose it. The technological and human asymmetry was nevertheless striking but such subterranean complexes allowed the Viet Cong to organize a strong resistance against the invading army. The ability for the earth to change its solidity characteristics was fundamental in the elaboration of a physical mean of defense:
The soil of Cu Chi is a mixture of sand and earth. During the rainy season it is soft like sugar, during the dry season as hard as rock. […] Such soil could stand the weight of a tank.
The U.S. Army volunteers who were exploring the discovered tunnels were named Rats. This name is not innocent as, for their psychological and physical survival they had to develop what Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari called Becoming Animal. When reading from a witness of these operations, one might even talk of a becoming matter as the bodies needed to embrace their own material composition in relationship to the material environment:
I was just an animal – we were all animals, we were dogs, we were snakes, we were dirt.
Text via The Funambulist
. Great Blog by the way.