Tag Archives: environmentalism

We Are the Weather

We Are the Weather

Farrar, Straus & Giroux
Hardcover
288 pages • $25.00
ISBN: 9780374280000
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Saving the Planet Begins at Breakfast

Jonathan Safran Foer

“Jonathan Safran Foer’s second book of nonfiction is an eye-opening collection of mostly short essays expressing both despair and hope over the climate crisis, especially around individual choice.”

The New York Times Book Review

Some people reject the fact, overwhelmingly supported by scientists, that our planet is warming because of human activity. But do those of us who accept the reality of human-caused climate change truly believe it? If we did, surely we would be roused to act on what we know. Will future generations distinguish between those who didn’t believe in the science of global warming and those who said they accepted the science but failed to change their lives in response? In We Are the Weather, Jonathan Safran Foer explores the central global dilemma of our time in a surprising, deeply personal, and urgent new way. The task of saving the planet will involve a great reckoning with ourselves—with our all-too-human reluctance to sacrifice immediate comfort for the sake of the future. We have, he reveals, turned our planet into a farm for growing animal products, and the consequences are catastrophic. Only collective action will save our home and way of life. And it all starts with what we eat—and don’t eat—for breakfast.

Jonathan Safran Foer

© Jeff Mermelstein

Jonathan Safran Foer is the author of the novels Everything Is Illuminated, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, and Here I Am, and of the nonfiction book Eating Animals. His work has received numerous awards and has been translated into thirty-six languages. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

We Are the Weather has been adopted for First-Year Experience programs at:

Lenoir-Rhyne University (NC)

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Falter

Locking Up Our Own

Henry Holt and Co.
Paperback
304 pages • $17.00
ISBN: 9781250256850
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Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out?

Bill McKibben

“He has gathered the most vivid statistics, distilled history to its juiciest turns, and made the case as urgently and clearly as can be: The whole breadth of our existence—the ‘human game’—is in jeopardy.”

The Washington Post

Bill McKibben’s groundbreaking book The End of Nature 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—“a fresh perspective with surprising examples and an engaging writing style” (Jared Diamond, The New York Times Book Review)—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 forebearers built slip away. Falter is a powerful and sobering call to arms, to save not only our planet but also our humanity.

Bill McKibben

© Nancie Battaglia

Bill McKibben is the founder of the environmental organization 350.org and was among the first to have warned of the dangers of global warming. He is the Schumann Distinguished Scholar in Environmental Studies at Middlebury College, and the winner of the Gandhi Prize, the Thomas Merton Prize, and the Right Livelihood Prize. He is the author of fifteen books, including the bestsellers The End of Nature, Eaarth, and Deep Economy. He lives in Vermont.

The Poisoned City

The Poisoned City

Picador
Paperback
336 pages • $18.00
ISBN: 9781250181619
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Flint’s Water and the American Urban Tragedy

Anna Clark

“An exceptional work of journalism. Clark delivers a thorough account of a still-evolving public health crisis, one with an unmistakable racial subtext . . . Her book is a deeply reported account of catastrophic mismanagement. But it’s also a celebration of civic engagement, a tribute to those who are fighting back against governmental malpractice.”

San Francisco Chronicle

When the people of Flint, Michigan, turned on their faucets in April 2014, the water pouring out was poisoned with lead and other toxins. Through a series of disastrous decisions, the state government had switched the city’s water supply to a source that corroded Flint’s aging lead pipes. Complaints about the foul-smelling water were dismissed: the residents of Flint, mostly poor and African American, were not seen as credible, even in matters of their own lives. It took eighteen months of activism by city residents and a band of dogged outsiders to force the state to admit that the water was poisonous. By that time, twelve people had died and Flint’s children had suffered irreparable harm. The long battle for accountability and a humane response to this man-made disaster has only just begun. In the first full account of this American tragedy, The Poisoned City recounts the gripping story of Flint’s poisoned water through the people who caused it, suffered from it, and exposed it. It is a chronicle of one town, but could also be about any American city, all made precarious by the neglect of infrastructure and the erosion of democratic decision-making. Places like Flint are set up to fail—and for the people who live and work in them, the consequences can be fatal.

Anna Clark

© Philip Dattilo

Anna Clark is a journalist living in Detroit. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Politico, the Columbia Journalism Review, and other publications. Anna edited A Detroit Anthology, a Michigan Notable Book, and she has been a writer-in-residence in Detroit public schools as part of the InsideOut Literary Arts program. She has also been a Fulbright fellow in Nairobi, Kenya and a Knight-Wallace journalism fellow at the University of Michigan.

The Poisoned City has been adopted for First-Year Experience program at:

Rider University (NJ)

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Amity and Prosperity

Amity and Prosperity

Picador
Paperback
336 pages • $18.00
ISBN: 9781250215079
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One Family and the Fracturing of America

Eliza Griswold

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize

“This riveting book is very much about the contested practice of industrial fracking and how its deadly side effects— poisoned air and water—disrupted these congenial small towns and the larger social fabric around Washington . . . The story is a page-turner exposing corporate injustices, dishonesty and public malfeasance.”

Pittsburgh-Post Gazette

Stacey Haney is a local nurse working hard to raise two kids and keep up her small farm when the fracking boom comes to her hometown of Amity, Pennsylvania. Intrigued by reports of lucrative natural gas leases in her neighbors’ mailboxes, she strikes a deal with a Texas-based energy company. When mysterious sicknesses begin to afflict her children, she appeals to the company for help. But its representatives insist that nothing is wrong. So begins Haney’s transformation from a struggling single mom to a renegade activist. Against local opposition, Haney—with the help of her neighbors and a dogged husband-and-wife legal team—begins to expose the human cost of America’s energy boom. Drawing on seven years of immersive reporting, Amity and Prosperity reveals what happens when an imperiled town faces a crisis of values—and a family wagers everything on an improbable quest for justice.

Eliza Griswold

© Guillermo Riveros

Eliza Griswold is the author of an acclaimed book of poems, Wideawake Field, as well as The Tenth Parallel, which won the 2011 J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize. Her translations of Afghan women’s folk poems, I Am the Beggar of the World, was awarded the 2015 PEN Award for Poetry in Translation. Currently a Distinguished Writer in Residence at New York University, she has published, most recently, Amity and Prosperity, winner of the Pulitzer Prize, and If Men, Then, a collection of poems.

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Losing Earth

9780374191337_FC

MCD Books
Hardcover
208 pages • $25.00
ISBN: 9780374191337
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Paperback available in March 2020

A Recent History
Nathaniel Rich

“A gripping piece of history . . . Rich’s writing is compelling and clear, even as he lays out details of 1980s international environmental policy.”

—NPR

By 1979, we knew nearly everything we understand today about climate change—including how to stop it. Over the next decade, a handful of scientists, politicians, and strategists, led by two unlikely heroes, risked their careers in a desperate, escalating campaign to convince the world to act before it was too late. Losing Earth is their story, and ours. The New York Times Magazine devoted an entire issue to Nathaniel Rich’s
groundbreaking chronicle of that decade, which became an instant journalistic phenomenon—the subject of news coverage, editorials, and conversations all over the world. In its emphasis on the lives of the people who grappled with the great existential threat of our age, it made vivid the moral dimensions of our shared plight. Now expanded into book form, Losing Earth tells the human story of climate change in even richer, more intimate terms. It reveals, in previously unreported detail, the birth of climate denialism and the genesis of the fossil fuel industry’s coordinated effort to thwart climate policy through misinformation propaganda and political influence. The book carries the story into the present day, wrestling with the long shadow of our past failures and asking crucial questions about how we make sense of our past, our future, and ourselves. Like John Hersey’s Hiroshima and Jonathan Schell’s The Fate of the Earth, Losing Earth is the rarest of achievements: a riveting work of dramatic history that articulates a moral framework for understanding how we got here, and how we must go forward.

Nathaniel Rich

© Meredith Angelson

Nathaniel Rich is a contributing writer at The New York Times Magazine and his essays have appeared in The New York Review of Books, The Atlantic, Harper’s Magazine, Rolling Stone, and The Daily Beast. He is also the author of three novels—King Zeno, Odds Against Tomorrow, and The Mayor’s Tongue—and a book about film noir, San Francisco Noir: The City in Film Noir from 1940 to the Present. He lives in New Orleans with his wife and young son.

Footprints

Footprints

Farrar, Straus & Giroux
Hardcover
320 pages • $27.00
ISBN: 9780374157333
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In Search of Future Fossils

David Farrier

Available in March 2020

In Footprints, the award-winning author David Farrier explores the traces we will leave for the very distant future. Modern civilization has created objects and landscapes with the potential to endure through deep time, whether it is plastic polluting the oceans and nuclear waste sealed within the earth or the 30 million miles of roads spanning the planet. Our carbon could linger in the atmosphere for 100,000 years, and the remains of our cities will still exist millions of years from now as a layer in the rock. These future fossils have the potential to reveal much about how we lived in the twenty-first century. Crossing the boundaries of literature, art, and science, Footprints invites us to think about how we will be remembered in the myths and stories of our distant descendants. Traveling from the Baltic Sea to the Great Barrier Reef, and from an ice-core laboratory in Tasmania to Shanghai, one of the world’s biggest cities, Farrier describes a world that is changing rapidly, with consequences beyond the scope of human understanding. As much a message of hope as a warning, Footprints will not only alter how you think about the future; it will change how you see the world today.

Farrier David

© Anneleen Lindsay

David Farrier teaches at the University of Edinburgh. In 2017, Footprints won the Royal Society of Literature’s Giles St Aubyn Award for Non-Fiction. He lives in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Confessions of a Recovering Environmentalist and Other Essays

Confessions of a Recovering Environmentalist

Graywolf Press
Paperback
208 pages • $16.00
ISBN: 9781555977801
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Paul Kingsnorth

“This book is refreshing in both a literary respect and an environmental one . . . Kingsnorth’s is a much-needed perspective in the environmental movement, recovering or otherwise.”

The Star Tribune (Minneapolis)

Paul Kingsnorth was once an activist—an ardent environmentalist. He fought against rampant development and the depredations of a corporate world that seemed hell-bent on ignoring a looming climate crisis in its relentless pursuit of profit. But as the environmental movement began to focus on “sustainability” rather than the defense of wild places for their own sake, and as global conditions worsened, he grew disenchanted with the movement that he once embraced. He gave up what he saw as the false hope that residents of the first world would ever make the kind of sacrifices that might avert the severe consequences of climate change. Full of grief and fury as well as passionate, lyrical evocations of nature and the wild, Confessions of a Recovering Environmentalist gathers the wave-making essays that have charted the change in Kingsnorth’s thinking. In them he articulates a new vision that he calls “dark ecology,” which stands firmly in opposition to the belief that technology can save us, and he argues for a renewed balance between the human and nonhuman worlds. This iconoclastic, fearless, and ultimately hopeful book, which includes the much-discussed “Uncivilization” manifesto, asks hard questions about how we’ve lived and how we should live.

Paul Kingsnorth (c) Clare McNamee

© Clare McNamee

Paul Kingsnorth is the author of the novels Beast and The Wake, which was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize. He is cofounder of the Dark Mountain Project, a global network of writers, artists, and thinkers in search of new stories for a world on the brink.