Landscapes and Geomorphology: A Very Short Introduction

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Landscapes and Geomorphology: A very short introduction Andrew Goudie and Heather Viles Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010 137 pp, 11x17 cm Pb: £7.99 ISBN 978-0-19-956557-3

Pocket-sized and pleasingly produced, this is an invigorating introduction to the study of landscapes. It will be a thoughtprovoking companion on a train journey and should find a place on many reading lists.

Goudie and Viles set a compelling case for geomorphology as a mainstream science, grand in its aims, rich in intellectual history. They are successful in combining large swathes with scatterings of detail. One section explains the global significance of the Tibetan plateau, or leads us through landforms, processes and time ('geomorphology has sometimes prioritized one of these three over the others, but we now know that they are all crucial' they comment donnishly); the next takes us to a termite mound or shows the desert dunes were destroyed to sculpt Palm Islands in Dubai.

The book has two key strengths. …