Barrow, Mark V., Jr. 1960-
BARROW, Mark V., Jr. 1960-
Born 1960. Education: Harvard University, Ph.D., 1992.
Office—History Department, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 432 Major Williams, Blacksburg, VA 24061-0117. E-mail—[email protected]
Author and educator. Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, associate professor of history.
Forum for the History of Science in America Book Prize, and Choice Outstanding Book Award, both for A Passion for Birds: American Ornithology after Audubon.
A Passion for Birds: American Ornithology after Audubon, Princeton University Press (Princeton, NJ), 1999.
WORK IN PROGRESS:
The Specter of Extinction: American Naturalists and Endangered Species, about the reactions of scientists toward the late-eighteenth-century decline of wildlife through the fault of humans; a cultural history of the American alligator.
Educator Mark V. Barrow, Jr.'s research focuses on the relationship between natural history, wildlife conservation, and pop culture, particularly in America. Barrow's first book, A Passion for Birds: American Ornithology after Audubon, examines the changes surrounding the study of birds in America from the death of renowned ornithologist John James Audubon in 1851 to 1940. A contributor to the Times Literary Supplement wrote that "Barrow's entertainingly informative work mines rich veins of archive material." Peter Stettenheim, in a review for Condor, stated that Barrow "brings the advantages of approaching his subject with the methodology of a historian and the dispassionate view of an outsider. His interest lies in the discipline of ornithology, not its subject matter." In an article for the Quarterly Review of Biology, Glen E. Woolfenden commented that "the title notwithstanding, the book gives only cursory treatment to bird enthusiasts, whose huge and ever-increasing numbers continue to surprise." Woolfenden went on to remark that the book favored the history of the American Ornithologists' Union, which was for many years a primarily eastern organization, thereby limiting the book's coverage. Walter J. Bock, writing for the Wilson Bulletin, said that "Barrow undertook a most intensive study of archives and the literature, as demonstrated by his citations, and presents a tremendous amount of information on the history of North American ornithology which is of interest to all ornithologists, professional and amateur alike."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Birder's World, June, 2000, review of A Passion for Birds: American Ornithology after Audubon, p. 86.
Condor, May, 2002, Peter Stettenheim, review of A Passion for Birds, p. 462.
Quarterly Review of Biology, Glen E. Woolfenden, review of A Passion for Birds, p. 235.
Times Literary Supplement, September 4, 1998, review of A Passion for Birds, p. 33.
Wilson Bulletin, March, 1999, Walter J. Bock, review of A Passion for Birds, p. 52.
Virginia Polytechnic Institute Web site,http://www.vt.edu/ (August 30, 2004), "Mark V. Barrow, Jr.".*