The Ends of the World

Volcanic Apocalypses, Lethal Oceans and Our Quest to Understand Earth's Past Mass Extinctions

Author: Peter Brannen

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 1786070081

Category: Science

Page: 320

View: 9874

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Apocalypse, now? Death by fire, ice, poison gas, suffocation, asteroid. At five moments through history life on Earth was dragged to the very edge of extinction. Now, armed with revolutionary technology, scientists are uncovering clues about what caused these catastrophes. Deep-diving into past worlds of dragonflies the size of seagulls and fishes with guillotines for mouths, they explore how – against all the odds – life survived and what these ominous chapters can tell us about our future.
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End Times

A Brief Guide to the End of the World

Author: Bryan Walsh

Publisher: Hachette UK

ISBN: 0316449601

Category: Science

Page: 416

View: 555

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Newsweek and Bloomberg popular science and investigative journalist Bryan Walsh explores the history of extinction and offers a cutting-edge examination of existential risk, the dangerous mistakes we have yet to pay for, and concrete steps we can take to protect ourselves and future-proof our civilization. What is going to cause our extinction? How can we save ourselves and our future? End Times answers the most important questions facing humankind End Times is a compelling work of skilled reportage that peels back the layers of complexity around the unthinkable-and inevitable-end of humankind. From asteroids and artificial intelligence to volcanic supereruption to nuclear war, 15-year veteran science reporter and TIME editor Bryan Walsh provides a stunning panoramic view of the most catastrophic threats to the human race. In End Times, Walsh examines threats that emerge from nature and those of our own making: asteroids, supervolcanoes, nuclear war, climate change, disease pandemics, biotechnology, artificial intelligence, and extraterrestrial intelligence. Walsh details the true probability of these world-ending catastrophes, the impact on our lives were they to happen, and the best strategies for saving ourselves, all pulled from his rigorous and deeply thoughtful reporting and research. Walsh goes into the room with the men and women whose job it is to imagine the unimaginable. He includes interviews with those on the front lines of prevention, actively working to head off existential threats in biotechnology labs and government hubs. Guided by Walsh's evocative, page-turning prose, we follow scientific stars like the asteroid hunters at NASA and the disease detectives on the trail of the next killer virus. Walsh explores the danger of apocalypse in all forms. In the end, it will be the depth of our knowledge, the height of our imagination, and our sheer will to survive that will decide the future.
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Necrogeopolitics

On Death and Death-Making in International Relations

Author: Caroline Alphin,François Debrix

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 0429855710

Category: Political Science

Page: 214

View: 3761

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Necrogeopolitics: On Death and Death-Making in International Relations brings together a diverse array of critical IR scholars, political theorists, critical security studies researchers, and critical geographers to provide a series of interventions on the topic of death and death-making in global politics. Contrary to most existing scholarship, this volume does not place the emphasis on traditional sources or large-scale configurations of power/force leading to death in IR. Instead, it details, theorizes, and challenges more mundane, perhaps banal, and often ordinary modalities of violence perpetrated against human lives and bodies, and often contributing to horrific instances of death and destruction. Concepts such as "slow death," "soft killing," "superfluous bodies," or "extra/ordinary" destruction/disappearance are brought to the fore by prominent voices in these fields alongside more junior creative thinkers to rethink the politics of life and death in the global polity away from dominant IR or political theory paradigms about power, force, and violence. The volume features chapters that offer thought-provoking reconsiderations of key concepts, theories, and practices about death and death-making along with other chapters that seek to challenge some of these concepts, theories, or practices in settings that include the Palestinian territories, Brazilian cities, displaced population flows from the Middle East, sites of immigration policing in North America, and spaces of welfare politics in Scandinavian states.
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Falter

Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out?

Author: Bill McKibben

Publisher: Henry Holt and Company

ISBN: 1250178274

Category: Nature

Page: 272

View: 9161

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Thirty years ago Bill McKibben offered one of the earliest warnings about climate change. Now he broadens the warning: the entire human game, he suggests, has begun to play itself out. Bill McKibben’s groundbreaking book The End of Nature -- issued in dozens of languages and long regarded as a classic -- was the first book to alert us to global warming. But the danger is broader than that: even as climate change shrinks the space where our civilization can exist, new technologies like artificial intelligence and robotics threaten to bleach away the variety of human experience. Falter tells the story of these converging trends and of the ideological fervor that keeps us from bringing them under control. And then, drawing on McKibben’s experience in building 350.org, the first truly global citizens movement to combat climate change, it offers some possible ways out of the trap. We’re at a bleak moment in human history -- and we’ll either confront that bleakness or watch the civilization our forebears built slip away. Falter is a powerful and sobering call to arms, to save not only our planet but also our humanity.
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Practicing Transcendence

Axial Age Spiritualities for a World in Crisis

Author: Christopher Peet

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 3030144321

Category: Religion

Page: 354

View: 1952

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This book introduces readers to the concept of the Axial Age and its relevance for a world in crisis. Scholars have become increasingly interested in philosopher Karl Jaspers’ thesis that a spiritual revolution in consciousness during the first millennium BCE decisively shaped world history. Axial ideas of transcendence develop into ideologies for world religions and civilizations, in turn coalescing into a Eurasian world-system that spreads globally to become the foundation of our contemporary world. Alongside ideas and ideologies, the Axial Age also taught spiritual practices critically resisting the new scale of civilizational power: in small counter-cultural communities on the margins of society, they turn our conscious focus inward to transform ourselves and overcome the destructive potentials within human nature. Axial spiritualities offer humanity a practical wisdom, a profound psychology, and deep hope: to transform despair into resilience, helping us face with courage the ecological and political challenges confronting us today.
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