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A History of Weed Science in the United States

A History of Weed Science in the United States

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A History of Weed Science in the United States

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432 pagine
6 ore
Pubblicato:
Feb 4, 2010
ISBN:
9780123815026
Formato:
Libro

Descrizione

It is important that scientists think about and know their history - where they came from, what they have accomplished, and how these may affect the future. Weed scientists, similar to scientists in many technological disciplines, have not sought historical reflection. The technological world asks for results and for progress. Achievement is important not, in general, the road that leads to achievement. What was new yesterday is routine today, and what is described as revolutionary today may be considered antiquated tomorrow.

Weed science has been strongly influenced by technology developed by supporting industries, subsequently employed in research and, ultimately, used by farmers and crop growers. The science has focused on results and progress. Scientists have been--and the majority remain--problem solvers whose solutions have evolved as rapidly as have the new weed problems needing solutions. In a more formal sense, weed scientists have been adherents of the instrumental ideology of modern science. That is an analysis of their work, and their orientation reveals the strong emphasis on practical, useful knowledge; on know how. The opposite, and frequently complementary orientation, that has been missing from weed science is an emphasis on contemplative knowledge; that is, knowing why. This book expands on and analyzes how these orientations have affected weed science’s development.

  • The first analytical history of weed science to be written
  • Compares the development of weed science, entomology and plant pathology
  • Identifies the primary founders of weed science and describes their role
Pubblicato:
Feb 4, 2010
ISBN:
9780123815026
Formato:
Libro

Informazioni sull'autore

Robert L. Zimdahl is a Professor of Weed Science at Colorado State University. He received his Ph.D. in Agronomy from Oregon State University. Among his many honors and awards, Dr. Zimdahl was elected a Fellow of the Weed Science Society of America in 1986 and currently serves as editor of that society’s journal, Weed Science. He has been a member of several international task forces and has authored a number of books and articles on the subject of weed science. He is the author of Fundamentals of Weed Science, and Six Chemicals that Changed Agriculture both from Elsevier.

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Anteprima del libro

A History of Weed Science in the United States - Robert L Zimdahl

Zimdahl

Brief Table of Contents

Front-matter

Copyright

Acknowledgments

Preface

Chapter 1. Why write a history?

Chapter 2. The development of entomology and plant pathology and their societies in comparison to weed science

Chapter 3. Beginning the study of weeds

Chapter 4. The founders

Chapter 5. Creation and development of university weed science programs

Chapter 6. Development of herbicides after 1945

Chapter 7. Creation and development of weed societies

Chapter 8. Weed science and changes in agricultural practice

Chapter 9. Weed science and the agrochemical industry

Chapter 10. The consequences of weed science's pattern of development

Table of Contents

Front-matter

Copyright

Acknowledgments

Preface

Chapter 1. Why write a history?

Chapter 2. The development of entomology and plant pathology and their societies in comparison to weed science

Entomology

Plant Pathology

Chapter 3. Beginning the study of weeds

A Brief Story of Agriculture

The blood, sweat, and tears era

The mechanical era

The chemical era

The Beginning of the Study of Weeds

Chapter 4. The founders

Henry Luke Bolley

Wilfred W. Robbins

Alden Springer Crafts

Charles J. Willard

James W. Zahnley

Thomas K. Pavlychenko[3]

Erhardt P. (Dutch) Sylwester

Robert Henderson Beatty

Marion W. Parker

William B. Ennis, Jr.

Warren Cleaton Shaw

Francis Leonard Timmons

Robert D. Sweet

Oliver Andrew Leonard

Clarence I. Seeley

George Frederick Warren III[13]

Kenneth P. Buchholtz

Ellery Louis Knake

Fred W. Slife

Boysie Eugene Day

Leroy George Holm

William R. Furtick

Donald E. Davis

Chester Gray McWhorter

Fanny Fern Davis

Chapter 5. Creation and development of university weed science programs

Chapter 6. Development of herbicides after 1945

2,4-D, The Phenoxyacetic Acids, and the Beginning of Rational Herbicide Development

Amino Triazole

2,4,5-T

The Substituted Urea Herbicides[8]

The Triazine Herbicides

The Dinitroanilines[9]

Paraquat and Diquat[10]

Monsanto Herbicides and the Roundup Story[11]

The Sulfonylurea Herbicides

The Imidazolinone Herbicides

Chapter 7. Creation and development of weed societies

The Western Society of Weed Science

The North Central Weed Science Society

The Northeastern Weed Science Society

The Southern Weed Science Society

Canadian Weed Conferences

The Weed Science Society of America

Concluding Comments

Presidential Comments

Writing History

The Presidents

What the Presidents Said

The importance of agricultural production

The necessity of herbicides

Environmental concern

Excessive regulation

Education

Comparison to other plant protection disciplines[12]

The problem of resistance

Sustainability

Conclusion

Chapter 8. Weed science and changes in agricultural practice

Chapter 9. Weed science and the agrochemical industry

Chapter 10. The consequences of weed science's pattern of development

Herbicide Resistance

Biotechnology

Sustainability

Organic Agriculture

Ethics

Front-matter

A History of Weed Science in the United States

A History of Weed Science in the United States

Robert L. Zimdahl

AMSTERDAM • BOSTON • HEIDELBERG • LONDON • NEW YORK • OXFORD • PARIS • SAN DIEGO • SAN FRANCISCO • SINGAPORE • SYDNEY • TOKYO

Copyright

Elsevier

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First edition 2010

Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved

No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Details on how to seek permission, further information about the Publisher's permissions policies and our arrangement with organizations such as the Copyright Clearance Center and the Copyright Licensing Agency, can be found at our website: www.elsevier.com/permissions

This book and the individual contributions contained in it are protected under copyright by the Publisher (other than as may be noted herein).

Notices

Knowledge and best practice in this field are constantly changing. As new research and experience broaden our understanding, changes in research methods, professional practices, or medical treatment may become necessary.

Practitioners and researchers must always rely on their own experience and knowledge in evaluating and using any information, methods, compounds, or experiments described herein. In using such information or methods they should be mindful of their own safety and the safety of others, including parties for whom they have a professional responsibility.

To the fullest extent of the law, neither the Publisher nor the authors, contributors, or editors, assume any liability for any injury and/or damage to persons or property as a matter of products liability, negligence or otherwise, or from any use or operation of any methods, products, instructions, or ideas contained in the material herein.

British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data

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ISBN: 978-0-12-381495-1

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This book has been manufactured using Print On Demand technology. Each copy is produced to order and is limited to black ink. The online version of this book will show colour figures where appropriate.

Acknowledgments

This project has consumed many hours over 2 years. It has been interesting and challenging and I have learned a great deal. Much of what I have learned has been due to the help and counsel received from others. Without their help, what follows would be diminished and incomplete.

Dr. Thomas O. Holtzer, Head of the Department of Bioagricultural Sciences and Pest Management at Colorado State University, has supported me with office space, as a reviewer, and with administrative assistance. Frequent conversations have been invaluable.

Dr. James W. Boyd, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, Colorado State University, has been a long-time friend whose advice and counsel have been essential to my intellectual development.

Dr. M.D.K. Owen, Professor of Agronomy, Iowa State University and Ms. Tanya Zanish-Belcher, Chief of the Archival Section of Parks Library at Iowa State University, provided an opportunity for several days of reading in the archives of the four regional societies and the Weed Science Society of America stored in Parks Library at Iowa State University.

Dr. Henry Cross, Professor Emeritus of Psychology, Colorado State University; Dr. Cynthia S. Brown, Associate Professor of Bioagricultural Sciences and Pest Management, Colorado State University; Dr. Sue Ellen M. Charlton, Professor of Political Science, Colorado State University; Dr. Scott J. Nissen, Professor of Bioagricultural Sciences, Colorado State University; Dr. Edward E. Schweizer, retired USDA/ARS research scientist; Dr. Arnold P. Appleby, Professor Emeritus of Weed Science, Oregon State University; Dr. Douglas L. Murray, Professor of Sociology, Colorado State University; and Dr. James D. Anderson, Chair, Weed Science Society of America Publications Committee and research scientist, USDA/ARS Weed Science Laboratory, Fargo, ND; and several anonymous reviewers from the Weed Science Society of America who provided helpful comments on portions of the manuscript.

When I began the research for the manuscript, I solicited responses to a few questions from several retired weed scientists. I thank each of them for their assistance.

Perhaps of greatest importance have been the constant understanding, editorial assistance, and support from my wife Pam.

Preface

The preface opens the book with an explanation of how Professor Zimdahl’s career developed and led to this book and exploration of topics relevant to weed science. Early work led to a book length discussion of the ethics of agriculture (2006). That book led to interest in history of weed science, the subject of this book. The end of the preface acknowledges that observation of the past may alter what is observed. Objectivity as a consequence is difficult to attain Therefore the facts chosen and truths expressed are inevitably personal and a result of participation in life.

This historical study is the result of a career in weed science, a sub-discipline of agriculture. I hope it will be a story that will be read and thought about, affecting the future of weed science. It is important that weed scientists know the history of their discipline and think about where they came from, what they have accomplished, and how to create their future.

This history must begin with the life of one mind (mine) that worked in weed science for more than 40 years but ended elsewhere. While I must begin with and cannot avoid the influence of my journey, this history of weed science cannot and should not end there. Biography alone is not history. My story is part of this historical study but only a small part. I am aware that what is reported herein may have happened otherwise. Human knowledge, including history, is neither objective nor subjective. It is personal and a result of participation in life (Lukacs, 2009).

After completing my doctoral degree at Oregon State University in 1968, I arrived in Fort Collins, Colorado, to begin a new life as an Assistant Professor of Botany and Plant Pathology at Colorado State University, with a specific assignment in weed science. The job required teaching a class—the Biology and Control of Weeds—doing research on the soil degradation of herbicides, and developing a program on weed control in agronomic crops. It was a long desired opportunity and I knew I was ready to take full advantage of it.

The beginning of my career at Colorado State University in 1968 coincided with some major world events. The North Vietnamese TET Offensive began on January 31, 1968 and began to turn American public opinion against the Vietnam War. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated on April 4, Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated on June 5. The Soviet Union invaded and occupied Czechoslovakia in August. During the summer U.S. cities burned and students revolted. The Democratic party's August convention in Chicago nominated Hubert Humphrey as its Presidential candidate, as the city collapsed in violence with street demonstrations and fighting. Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the moon on July 20. These events, while very important, didn't directly affect me, my family, or my new career.

Then the stories and facts about the use of the herbicide 2,4,5-T during the Vietnam War intervened. My career's supports, created so carefully, began to loosen. I began to doubt if what I knew to be the foundational facts and the supporting myths of my science were adequate. It was, in a very real way for me, a crisis of faith; faith in what I had learned and in science, especially in my science—weed science.

In 1971, I presented a volunteer paper, Human Experiments in Teratogenicity, in the ecology section of the Weed Science Society of America meeting in Dallas, Texas. The major objective of the paper was to question the role weed scientists played and ought to play in an increasingly polluted world. I was troubled and asked my colleagues to help me think about under what conditions it was possible to say that any herbicide is so necessary to our food production system that any risk of human harm is acceptable. The paper suggested herbicides were means to the desirable end of food production. I proposed that those who work with herbicides must ask and answer questions about whether the means and ends were compatible. The paper argued that members of society must feel they are participants in determining the way things are ordered. They must think they have, and actually have, the power to choose. To make the sense of choosing and participation real, people must also have the evidence required to judge possible alternatives. People must also have, beyond the evidence, a sense of general purpose that serves as a context into which particular judgments can be fitted.

The room was partially full for my paper. A group of colleagues spoke to me after the paper to tell me how wrong I was. The essence of the rather unpleasant encounter was that they wanted to know why I was so eager to bite the hand that fed me and much of the rest of the world. Their comments assured me that something was wrong but it was something that was wrong with me and my thinking. In my colleagues’ view, there was nothing important wrong with agriculture, weed science, or with herbicides. They believed that weed scientists should continue the scientifically responsible quest for wise use of federally approved herbicides. I knew something was wrong but wasn't able to define it well, and I was beginning to doubt that the unquestioned development of herbicides for agriculture was a priori good. The philosophical supports of my elegant, ordered, satisfying, professional scientific life, which had not been created as carefully as the scientific foundation, began to crumble after that paper.

In a paper published in the Bulletin of the Entomological Society of America (Zimdahl, 1972), I elaborated the previous oral presentation and continued my quest not only to decide what I thought but also to see if any weed scientists cared. The issues didn't go away. I continued to read and think and tried to learn more about the issues when I wasn't doing the teaching and research my job required. A second paper published in the same journal (Zimdahl, 1978) argued that special knowledge and highly trained minds produce their own limitations. They tend to create an inability to accept views from outside the discipline, usually owing to a deep preoccupation with the discipline's methods, findings, and conclusions. For example, Holm (1978) asked weed scientists if they knew of anyone on their street, or down their road, who can document an illness, acute or chronic, or a death, from an agricultural chemical used according to label directions. The answer he expected to his rhetorical question was, No. He went on to state that if there is no appeal to reason, it has become an emotional issue, and our tactics will have been wrong. I was compelled to ask if Holm, a man whom all weed scientists respected, if not held in awe, was preoccupied with the discipline's own conclusions or was he right in all respects and, was I, a young weed scientist, just not able to see what others saw so clearly.

After doing weed science research and teaching for 20 years and making a further attempt to clarify my thoughts (Zimdahl, 1991) it was time to reflect on what had and had not been learned and plan my future. This led to work in the area of the values and ethics of agriculture, particularly those of weed science, which required examining a whole new area of learning. Exploring the ethical foundation of the science that had defined my professional life was what I decided to do. I developed and taught my university's first course on agricultural ethics, published a few journal articles, and a book—Agriculture's Ethical Horizon (Zimdahl, 2006).

However, I was still not satisfied that I had explored weed science adequately. Examination of its philosophical foundation was essential, but further exploration of how and why the science developed as it did was required. A study of its history was required. The result is this book. It has been a difficult and rewarding challenge. My quest to answer the essential question of whether my weed science colleagues and I were preoccupied with our discipline's conclusions has led to an exploration of the discipline's conclusions, how they were derived, and their supporting reasons. Understanding the past and knowing where we came from is essential to interpretation of the present and exploration of routes to the future. It is my intent to present the history of weed science, primarily in the United States, in its own terms. How I evaluate that history, however, reflects my judgments based on years of thought and study. I have tried to think like others and have listened to the stories of many con-cerning the development of weed science. It is my intent to carry out the historian's task as described by Gilderhus (1992, p. 36): to elucidate the past, not merely to condemn it. It is also important that one who attempts to write history recognize that a version of W. Heisenberg's uncertainty principle is involved (Gaddis, 2002, p. 29). Heisenberg proposed that one could never know the precise location and speed of a particle because the act of observation affected what was observed. Gaddis proposed that the act of observing the past alters what is being observed. This means that objectivity as a consequence is difficult, and therefore, truth is often personal and a result of participation in life.

Bibliography

References

Gaddis (2002) Gaddis J.L., The Landscape of History—How Historians Map the Past 2002 Oxford University Press Oxford, UK 192 pp.

Gilderhus (1992) Gilderhus M.T., History and Historians—A Historiographical Introduction second ed 1992 Prentice Hall Englewood Cliffs, NJ 132 pp.

Holm (1978) Holm L., Some characteristics of weed problems in two worlds Proc. Western Soc. Weed Sci. 31 1978, 3-12

Lukacs (2009) Lukacs J., Putting man before Descartes Am. Schol. 78 1 2009, 18-29

Zimdahl (1972) Zimdahl R.L., Pesticides—A value question Bull. Entomol. Soc. Am. June 1972, 109-110

Zimdahl (1978) Zimdahl R.L., The pesticide paradigm Bull. Entomol. Soc. Am. 24 1978, 357-360

Zimdahl (1991) Zimdahl R.L., Weed Science—A Plea for Thought 1991 USDA/CSRS Washington, DC 34 pp.

Zimdahl (2006) Zimdahl R.L., Agriculture's Ethical Horizon 2006 Academic Press San Diego, CA 235 pp.

Chapter 1. Why write a history?

The book is guided by an attempt to answer three questions: where has weed science come from, what are we, and where are we going? Historical reflection is not a characteristic of many sciences. Scientists are forward-looking and they know a lot about how to do things but do not frequently question why things are done in a particular way. Weed science lacks an analytical/interpretive history that identifies and explores fundamental hypotheses that address why questions and their consequences. None of the available historical chronologies addresses fundamental hypotheses that should be understood in their historical context when one attempts to answer the three questions.

The chapter claims that a good history is one that reconstructs and interprets the past. This work attempts to be objective and to describe as accurately as the available information allows what happened, where it happened, and who was involved. It uses three analytical schemes commonly used by historians. The chapter ends with a brief summary of the following chapters.

What we, or at any rate what I refer to confidently as memory—meaning a moment, a scene, a fact that has been subjected to a fixative and thereby rescued from oblivion is really a form of storytelling that goes on continually in the mind and often changes with the telling. Too many conflicting emotional interests are involved for life ever to be wholly acceptable, and possibly it is the work of the storyteller to rearrange things so that they conform to this end. In any case, in talking about the past we lie with every breath we draw.Maxwell (1980)

The introduction to Wright's (2004, pp. 1, 2) A Short History of Progress relates a story about the French Post-Impressionist artist Paul Gauguin (1848–1903). In the 1890s, Gauguin left Paris for Tahiti. In 1897, a mail steamer brought the news that his favorite child, his daughter, Aline, had died from pneumonia. After months of depression he produced his masterpiece, the title of which is an appropriate beginning and an answer to the question—Why write a history? The work's French title is—D'Où Venons Nous? Que Sommes Nous? Où Allons Nous? The English translation is: Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going? Gauguin's intent, in the post-impressionist tradition, was to use his art to produce an emotional experience dependent on personal impression. My goal is not to ask existential questions, as Gauguin did, but to use his questions as a guide to an exploration of the development of weed science in the United States.

The questions Gauguin asked seem to have easy answers. If one regards them as personal questions, it is easy to assume that all people with reasonable intelligence know where they came from, where they are, and quite a bit about their career and life destination. If Gauguin's questions are larger, societal questions then the answers are not as easy or obvious. When I ask Gauguin'Why write a history?What we, or at any rate what I refer to confidently as memory—meaning a moment, a scene, a fact that has been subjected to a fixative and thereby rescued from oblivion is really a form of storytelling that goes on continually in the mind and often changes with the telling. Too many conflicting emotional interests are involved for life ever to be wholly acceptable, and possibly it is the work of the storyteller to rearrange things so that they conform to this end. In any case, in talking about the past we lie with every breath we draw.Maxwell (1980)The introduction to Wright’s (2004, pp. 1, 2) A Short History of Progress relates a story about the French Post-Impressionist artist Paul Gauguin (1848–1903). In the 1890s, Gauguin left Paris for Tahiti. In 1897, a mail steamer brought the news that his favorite child, his daughter, Aline, had died from pneumonia. After months of depression he produced his masterpiece, the title of which is an appropriate beginning and an answer to the question—Why write a history? The work’s French title is—D’Où Venons Nous? Que Sommes Nous? Où Allons Nous? The English translation is: Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going? Gauguin’s intent, in the post-impressionist tradition, was to use his art to produce an emotional experience dependent on personal impression. My goal is not to ask existential questions, as Gauguin did, but to use his questions as a guide to an exploration of the development of weed science in the United States.The questions Gauguin asked seem to have easy answers. If one regards them as personal questions, it is easy to assume that all people with reasonable intelligence know where they came from, where they are, and quite a bit about their career and life destination. If Gauguin’s questions are larger, societal questions then the answers are not as easy or obvious. When I ask Gauguin’s questions about my discipline—weed science, they become difficult and the answers are elusive and perhaps absent. Some of the difficulty is explained by the words of Knüsli (1970), a chemist who was intimately involved in herbicide development with J. R. Geigy S. A. in Basle, Switzerland: Technology does not like historical reflections. The technological world asks for results and for progress. Achievement is important not, in general, the road that leads to achievement. What was new yesterday is routine today, and what is described as revolutionary today may be considered antiquated tomorrow. Our age is a daily challenge, beloved or hated, depending on where we stand.

Knüsli's point is similar to that made by Pollan (2008, p. 46) who wrote about food 38 years later. Pollan notes that few scientists ever look back to see if they or their paradigms might have gone astray. As Knüsli said, achievement is important. Pollan, sounding a lot like Kuhn's (1970, p. 35) description of normal science as puzzle solving, says that scientists are trained to keep moving forward, doing yet more science to add to the increments of our knowledge, patching up and preserving whatever of the current consensus can be preserved until the next big idea comes along. Or in Kuhn's terms, until a new paradigm appears.

Weed science has been strongly influenced by technology developed by supporting industries, employed in research by weed scientists, and, ultimately, used by farmers. Weed scientists similar to scientists in many technological disciplines have not sought historical reflection. They have focused on results and progress. They have been problem solvers whose solutions have evolved as rapidly as have the new weed problems to be solved. In a more formal sense, weed scientists have been adherents of the instrumental ideology of modern science. That is an analysis of their work and their orientation reveals the strong emphasis on practical, useful knowledge—on know-how (Dear, 2005). The opposite and frequently complementary orientation that has been missing from weed science is an emphasis on contemplative knowledge, which one might call knowing why.

Weeds and their control are one of agriculture's enduring problems. Even if the claim that more human labor is expended to weed crops than for any other human activity is not true, it is indisputable that a great deal of human labor is expended to weed crops (see Holm, 1971). Modern agriculture in the world's developed nations has addressed but not eliminated most weed problems through extensive use of herbicides and the more recent development of herbicide resistant crops through genetic modification. These methods while undeniably successful for their intended purpose also have created manifold environmental, non-target species and human health problems. At the same time it is true, as Holm (1978) claimed, that "the western world has acquired so much wisdom and power over nature … that we squabble about it—while two thirds of the world are (sic) still screaming to get it. Farmers in the world's developing nations use some herbicides but newer herbicides and the necessary application technology are often unavailable or too expensive. Weeds are always present in these farmer's fields and the available, affordable control methods are mechanical weeding, usually with animal power, or by hand, and most of the labor is provided by women (see Chapter VIII). Neither Holm's (1971) hypothesis that more energy is expended for the weeding man's crops than for any other single human task," nor the corollary hypothesis that women do most of the world's weeding has been verified. Both are similar to many other agricultural hypotheses. They are not debated; they are accepted.

There is no analytical/interpretive history of weed science that identifies and explores its fundamental hypotheses and their consequences. Several useful chronologies of the creation and development of U.S. weed science societies (see Chapter VII) are available. However, none of these address the fundamental hypotheses of weed science that must be understood in their historical context, as an essential contribution to the desired goal of developing sustainable, environmentally, socially, and politically acceptable weed management methods for the world. A plausible reason for this is that weed science, among the agricultural sciences, is young. The Weed Society of America first met in New York City in 1956. The name was changed to the Weed Science Society of America in 1967 (Appleby, 2005). Volume 1 of the journal Weeds (changed to Weed Science in 1968), with nine articles, was published in October 1951. R. D. Sweet of Cornell University was the editor. That issue included 1,384 citations of publications on weeds that appeared from January to June 1951: Clearly, weed work had begun before the journal or society began. The citations compiled by the Division of Weed Investigations of the Agricultural Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture show that weed work was underway in many places. The lead article in the first issue (Willard, 1951) noted that there were only three full time weed men in 1934 and not too many part time ones. However, by late 1951, forty-six State Agricultural Experiment stations had active weed research projects.

A second reason for the lack of an analytical history of weed science may reflect the view among practitioners of progressive, applied sciences such as weed science that "history is a fiction that has little more relation to our lives than a story or novel (Fussell, 1945). If one knows or is quite certain that the weed management methods now available and those on the horizon are the best methods. It is neither logical nor necessary to study or explore the reasons (the history) for the creation of those methods and those who developed them because it is incredible to think that there is any intention of returning to them (Fussell, 1945). History, as Henry Ford told us, is more or less bunk" (quoted in the Chicago Tribune, May 25, 1916). It is tradition. We don't want tradition. We want to live in the present and the only history that is worth a tinker's damn is the history we make today. The British historian A. J. P. Taylor said, The only lesson of history is that there are no lessons of history (Murphy, 2007, p. 13).[¹] If Ford and Taylor are correct, then it is reasonable to ask, why study history? It seems to be not just unnecessary; it is a waste of time.

¹ This latter quote is attributed to an anonymous source in the 1970 International Thesaurus of Quotations, p. 417.

There is another view of history that is best expressed in a metaphor. Weed science is young among the sciences and has changed so rapidly in its young life that weed scientists have had a hard time just keeping up. The speed of change resembles the view one has when riding on a fast train. If one looks out the window at the edge of the track or at a nearby field or town, everything goes by so fast that it is nearly impossible to focus on anything except the blur of passage. A glimpse is all you get and that glimpse is gone almost as soon as it appears. It is similar to time where the present is gone as soon as it arrives. It is now history and the next moment passes as quickly. The present, the view of close things from the train window, is gone as soon as it arrives. All we have that we can retain is the thought of what we saw—but it is now past, it is history. We anticipate what may come into view—the future, but it has not appeared and when it does it is immediately gone. However, when one looks out the train window at the horizon, one is compelled to take a distant view and things become clearer and remain visible longer. They can be studied and thought about as they pass because they stay in the field of vision and in one's mind longer. It is the desirable clarity of the long view that history gives us and that this book will try to explore.

It is not uncommon to hear that history is just one damn thing after another, but if we don't pay attention to what has happened we may just keep solving the same problems and addressing the same issues over and over. Historical study, when it is done well, can be a useful chronology of what has happened, even though it is often told by the

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