The book considers environmental history through the medium of the following themes:
Ms. Bhargava in her review points out the need to move away from a comparmentalisation of history by dividing it into distinct periods and instead aim towards a seamless understanding of the transition of knowledge.
Precolonial ecological systems
The environmental challenges faced in premodern times are highlighted using the examples of the prevalence of Sal forests, and of wildlife history. The book makes the point that pre-industrial ecological systems were also 'transient, uncertain and constantly changing'.
Elephants, horses, hunters, tribes
The above elements are some of those that describe human-environment interactions especiallyas they relate to statecraft, politics and wars, and cultural life. The review takes a look at the various papers that examine these interactions.
Scholarship on diverse aspects
Volume 2 raises the issue of potential 'greyer dimensions' within colonialism while also looking at landscapes as both ecological entities and contested terrain.
Ms.Bhargava points out that the value of this book is in its ability to unify diverse aspects of environment. This will be valuable not only to those interested in environmental history, but also to those interested in south Asian history and social studies.