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parsed(2024-05-29) - pubdate: 05/24
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pub date: 1716958800
today: 1718946000, pubdate > today = false

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Extinctions

From Dinosaurs to You

May 29, 2024 | Hardcover
ISBN: 9780226741017
$36.95
Reader Reward Price: $33.26 info
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Description

A compelling answer to an important question: Can past mass extinctions teach us how to avoid future planetary disaster?

On its face, the story of mass extinction on Earth is one of unavoidable disaster. Asteroid smashes into planet; goodbye dinosaurs. Planetwide crises seem to be beyond our ability to affect or evade. Extinctions argues that geological history tells an instructive story, one that offers important signs for us to consider. When the asteroid struck, Charles Frankel explains, it set off a wave of cataclysms that wore away at the global ecosystem until it all fell apart. What if there had been a way to slow or even turn back these tides? Frankel believes that the answer to this question holds the key to human survival.

Human history, from the massacre of Ice Age megafauna to today's industrial climate change, has brought the planet through another series of cataclysmic events. But the history of mass extinction together with the latest climate research, Frankel maintains, shows us a way out. If we curb our destructive habits, particularly our drive to kill and consume other species, and work instead to conserve what biodiversity remains, the Earth might yet recover. Rather than await decisive disaster, Frankel argues that we must instead take action to reimagine what it means to be human. As he eloquently explains, geological history reminds us that life is not eternal; we can disappear, or we can become something new and continue our evolutionary adventure.

About this Author

Charles Frankel is a science writer and lecturer specializing in geology and planetary exploration. His many books include Volcanoes and Wine: From Pompeii to Napa, also published by the University of Chicago Press.

ISBN: 9780226741017
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 288
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Published: 2024-05-29

$31.99

Reviews

"This unnerving study from science writer Frankel contextualizes the current climate crisis by comparing it to the extinction of the dinosaurs 66 million years ago. . . . This is an urgent wake-up call."

"This engagingly written book is a tour de force on the history and future of extinctions across the globe. Mastery of the subject matter is paired with clear appraisals of controversial topics in the field. This whirlwind tour of what we know and don't know about past and future extinctions will better arm everyone to deal with our rapidly changing world."

"As Frankel guides us through ancient mass extinctions, we see with frightening ease our own species take charge over evolution's dog-eat-dog, trial-by-fire way of forging new life. Even before we arrive at our present bind, Frankel demonstrates, past is prologue--at least if we don't learn from it. This book provides a road map of the cruel realities of past extinctions and a warning, lest history repeat itself."

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