In Jared Diamond’s follow-up to the Pulitzer-Prize winning Guns, Germs and Steel, the author explores how climate change, the population explosion and political discord create the conditions for the collapse of civilization
Environmental damage, climate change, globalization, rapid population growth, and unwise political choices were all factors in the demise of societies around the world, but some found solutions and persisted. As in Guns, Germs, and Steel, Diamond traces the fundamental pattern of catastrophe, and weaves an all-encompassing global thesis through a series of fascinating historical-cultural narratives. Collapse moves from the Polynesian cultures on Easter Island to the flourishing American civilizations of the Anasazi and the Maya and finally to the doomed Viking colony on Greenland. Similar problems face us today and have already brought disaster to Rwanda and Haiti, even as China and Australia are trying to cope in innovative ways. Despite our own society’s apparently inexhaustible wealth and unrivaled political power, ominous warning signs have begun to emerge even in ecologically robust areas like Montana.
Brilliant, illuminating, and immensely absorbing, Collapse is destined to take its place as one of the essential books of our time, raising the urgent question: How can our world best avoid committing ecological suicide?
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
Jared Diamond's Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed is the glass-half-empty follow-up to his Pulitzer Prize-winning Guns, Germs, and Steel. While Guns, Germs, and Steel explained the geographic and environmental reasons why some human populations have flourished, Collapse uses the same factors to examine why ancient societies, including the Anasazi of the American Southwest and the Viking colonies of Greenland, as well as modern ones such as Rwanda, have fallen apart. Not every collapse has an environmental origin, but an eco-meltdown is often the main catalyst, he argues, particularly when combined with society's response to (or disregard for) the coming disaster. Still, right from the outset of Collapse, the author makes clear that this is not a mere environmentalist's diatribe. He begins by setting the book's main question in the small communities of present-day Montana as they face a decline in living standards and a depletion of natural resources. Once-vital mines now leak toxins into the soil, while prion diseases infect some deer and elk and older hydroelectric dams have become decrepit. On all these issues, and particularly with the hot-button topic of logging and wildfires, Diamond writes with equanimity.
Because he's addressing such significant issues within a vast span of time, Diamond can occasionally speak too briefly and assume too much, and at times his shorthand remarks may cause careful readers to raise an eyebrow. But in general, Diamond provides fine and well-reasoned historical examples, making the case that many times, economic and environmental concerns are one and the same. With Collapse, Diamond hopes to jog our collective memory to keep us from falling for false analogies or forgetting prior experiences, and thereby save us from potential devastations to come. While it might seem a stretch to use medieval Greenland and the Maya to convince a skeptic about the seriousness of global warming, it's exactly this type of cross-referencing that makes Collapse so compelling. --Jennifer BuckendorffFrom the Back Cover:
"Diamond’s most influential gift may be his ability to write about geopolitical and environmental systems in ways that don’t just educate and provoke, but entertain."
—The Seattle Times
"Extremely persuasive . . . replete with fascinating stories, a treasure trove of historical anecdotes [and] haunting statistics."
—The Boston Globe
"Extraordinary in erudition and originality, compelling in [its] ability to relate the digitized pandemonium of the present to the hushed agrarian sunrises of the far past."
—The New York Times Book Review
"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.
Book Description Penguin Books, 2011. Book Condition: New. Brand New, Unread Copy in Perfect Condition. A+ Customer Service! Summary: In this fascinating book, Diamond seeks to understand the fates of past societies that collapsed for ecological reasons, combining the most important policy debate of this generation with the romance and mystery of lost worlds. Bookseller Inventory # ABE_book_new_0143117009
Book Description Book Condition: New. Depending on your location, this item may ship from the US or UK. Bookseller Inventory # 97801431170010000000
Book Description Penguin Random House. Book Condition: New. Brand New. Bookseller Inventory # 0143117009
Book Description Penguin Books. PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0143117009 Brand New Book. Ships from the United States. 30 Day Satisfaction Guarantee!. Bookseller Inventory # 15454472
Book Description PENGUIN GROUP, 2011. PAP. Book Condition: New. New Book.Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000. Bookseller Inventory # IB-9780143117001
Book Description Paperback. Book Condition: BRAND NEW. BRAND NEW. Fast Shipping. Prompt Customer Service. Satisfaction guaranteed. Bookseller Inventory # 0143117009BNA
Book Description Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # 1500004
Book Description Penguin (Non-Classics). PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0143117009. Bookseller Inventory # Z0143117009ZN
Book Description Penguin (Non-Classics). PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0143117009 *BRAND NEW* Ships Same Day or Next!. Bookseller Inventory # SWATI2121944975
Book Description Softcover. Book Condition: New. New. This item is new unopened, never used and still in its original manufacturer condition. Tracking number will be provided to you so that you may track your order (for all USA orders). Bookseller Inventory # BAA-B-3663799