Trees and Forests of Tropical Asia: Exploring Tapovan (Paperback)

Trees and Forests of Tropical Asia: Exploring Tapovan By Peter Ashton, David Lee Cover Image

Trees and Forests of Tropical Asia: Exploring Tapovan (Paperback)


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Informed by decades of researching tropical Asian forests, a comprehensive, up-to-date, and beautifully illustrated synthesis of the natural history of this unique place.
Trees and Forests of Tropical Asia invites readers on an expedition into the leafy, humid, forested landscapes of tropical Asia—the so-called tapovan, a Sanskrit word for the forest where knowledge is attained through tapasya, or inner struggle. Peter Ashton and David Lee, two of the world’s leading scholars on Asian tropical rain forests, reveal the geology and climate that have produced these unique forests, the diversity of species that inhabit them, the means by which rain forest tree species evolve to achieve unique ecological space, and the role of humans in modifying the landscapes over centuries. Following Peter Ashton’s extensive On the Forests of Tropical Asia, the first book to describe the forests of the entire tropical Asian region from India east to New Guinea, this new book provides a more condensed and updated overview of tropical Asian forests written accessibly for students as well as tropical forest biologists, ecologists, and conservation biologists.
Peter Ashton is professor emeritus in the Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University, where he served as director of the Arnold Arboretum. He is also an honorary research associate at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Ashton has published more than 260 research papers and books and has field experience in the forests of all but three nations in the Asian tropics. He is a Japan Prize laureate and recipient of many other awards, including the Linnean Medal, the David Fairchild Medal for Plant Exploration, and the UNESCO Sultan Qaboos Prize for Environmental Preservation.

For over fifty years, David Lee has researched leaves, first in the Asian tropics and later at Florida International University, where he taught for thirty years and is professor emeritus in the Department of Biological Sciences. He is the author of many articles and several books.
Product Details ISBN: 9780226535692
ISBN-10: 022653569X
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication Date: October 14th, 2022
Pages: 448
“This profoundly inspirational book, a personal—almost autobiographical—deep-dive into the ecology, evolution, biogeography, and conservation of the forests of tropical Asia, is a lyrically written, instant classic, a page-turner natural history saga in the mold of a modern-day Alfred Russel Wallace.”
— Stephen P. Hubbell

“A fascinating, unique contribution to a scarce literature, and a book that perhaps could only have been written by these two authors. Ashton and Lee’s stories will inspire others to build a knowledgebase that the rich biodiversity of tropical Asian forests warrants, and that society seeks.”
— Kamal Bawa, University of Massachusetts, Boston, and ATREE, Bengaluru

“A major scientific treatise that will be an essential reference for those who study tropical forests.”
— Plant Science Bulletin, on "On the Forests of Tropical Asia"

“A monumental work. . . . For any tropical biologist on any continent, the book will provide an invaluable reference, a fascinating history, and a wellspring for novel ideas.”
— Biotropica, on "On the Forests of Tropical Asia"

“A masterpiece of scientific scholarship in an area that is of tremendous importance for the biosphere.”
— Biologist, on "On the Forests of Tropical Asia"