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"The Collapse of Western Civilization" Response

Marina's picture

My initial reaction when starting The Collape of Western Civilization, by Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway, was of confusion. Without reading the description I had no idea what the book was presuming to explain. Of course, the objective of the authors to alert readers to the serious state of crisis the Earth is currently undergoing became clear as I read on. I find this book's message alarming, however I cannot say I particularly enjoy reading it. The first page of every chapter displays a map and reminds me of a history textbook... Many of the scientific explanations are difficult for me to process without expending excessive amounts of time rereading them... Overall, the book is interesting in concept, and the scientific aspects give it a greater sense of reality, so I think that although it is not suited to my personal tastes, The Collapse of Western Civilization is extremely effective in terms of the authors' goal of raising public awareness of the environment.

Oreskes, Naomi, and Erik Conway. The Collapse of Civilization: A View from the Future. New York: Columbia University Press, 2014.