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: This book examines intellectual curiosity as the driving force in scholarly endeavor on the borderlands of geography, history, anthropology, and other disciplines. The premise is that curiosity is a salient trait of certain people past and present and that each field has its exemplars in this regard. For Carl O. Sauer (1889-1975), America’s leading geographer of the twentieth century, and his intellectual descendants, the inquisitive spirit stood high on the list of indispensable scholarly attributes. Their curiosity-driven studies converging space, time, ecology, and culture involved a fluid and unpredictable process of intellectual discovery. This book, combining the empirical with the philosophical and reflexive, describes how the power of intrinsic motivation and the thread of a romantic consciousness blend with the joy of polymathic exploration.