When the Island had Fish is the story of a tiny island, Vinalhaven Maine, that offers a close look at the significant history of Maine fishing particularly, but also provides a meditation on America's past and future. Vinalhaven's fishing history is in every way America's history. It's a story of habitations by native peoples and European-American settlers, their use of natural resources, their communities and kin, and their efforts to find ways to live in a harsh environment. Anyone interested in creating a viable collective future will learn from reading about the Penobscot Bay fisheries and fishermen, and about Vinalhaven's citizens' expansive knowledge of craft, husbandry, self-governance and community independence, and interdependence.
About the Author
Janna Malamud Smith has lectured and has published widely nationally and internationally. She is the author of four books. The first two, Private Matters. (1997) and A Potent Spell. (2003) were chosen as "Notable Books" by The New York Times Sunday Book Review. Her third, "My Father is a book." (2006) was selected as a Washington Post Best Book of the Year, and a New York Times Editor's Choice. Two of her essays were reprinted in Best American Essays. Her most recent book is An Absorbing Errand: How Artists and Craftsmen Make their way to Mastery (2013). She writes regularly for Cognoscenti, an opinion website for WBUR a Boston NPR station.