Robert Lee Maril, a professor at Texas Southmost College, has recently written a book that explores the Texas coast and the diverse people who call it home considering the many ways Texans have altered these lands. In Cannibals and Condos: Texans and Texas along the Gulf Coast Maril talks with rich, poor, and in between to show how today’s decisions will affect future lives.
For eons the Texas Gulf Coast stretched undisturbed for nearly four hundred miles of quiet wetlands and long beaches. The Karankawa Indians, often maligned as cannibals, once lived there in harmony with land and sea. Today the coast is rapidly being changed—being forced to give up its limited resources. At tremendous economic risk, condominiums and whole communities are being built there on shifting sands that offer little to support the demands of large, permanent populations.
Maril’s book is a personal exploration of that coastline as seen through the eyes of a professional researcher, traveler, and resident of the Texas Coast. He describes the region’s unique beauty and its appeal for those who want to escape crowded cities and colder climes. In exploring the coast, its people, and its social myths, Maril offers modest solutions to its problems: oil spills and toxic pollution, hurricanes, the displacement of those who make their living from the sea, and, most importantly, the destruction of the land itself in the name of development.
About the Author
Published by Texas A&M University Press