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Sixth Extinction An Unnatural History

ISBN-10: 0805092994
ISBN-13: 9780805092998
Edition: 2014
List price: $30.00 Buy it from $6.74
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Description: A major book about the future of the world, blending intellectual and natural history and field reporting into a powerful account of the mass extinction unfolding before our eyes Over the last half a billion years, there have been five mass  More...

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Book details

List price: $30.00
Copyright year: 2014
Publisher: Henry Holt & Company
Publication date: 2/11/2014
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 336
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.75" long x 1.25" tall
Weight: 1.518
Language: English

A major book about the future of the world, blending intellectual and natural history and field reporting into a powerful account of the mass extinction unfolding before our eyes Over the last half a billion years, there have been five mass extinctions, when the diversity of life on earth suddenly and dramatically contracted. Scientists around the world are currently monitoring the sixth extinction, predicted to be the most devastating extinction event since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs. This time around, the cataclysm is us. In The Mastodon's Molars , two-time winner of the National Magazine Award and New Yorker writer Elizabeth Kolbert draws on the work of scores of researchers in half a dozen disciplines, accompanying many of them into the field: geologists who study deep ocean cores, botanists who follow the tree line as it climbs up the Andes, marine biologists who dive off the Great Barrier Reef. She introduces us to a dozen species, some already gone, others facing extinction, including the Panamian golden frog, staghorn coral, the great auk, and the Sumatran rhino. Through these stories, Kolbert provides a moving account of the disappearances occurring all around us and traces the evolution of extinction as concept, from its first articulation by Georges Cuvier in revolutionary Paris up through the present day. The sixth extinction is likely to be mankind's most lasting legacy; as Kolbert observes, it compels us to rethink the fundamental question of what it means to be human.

Elizabeth Kolbert is a staff writer for The New Yorker. Her series on global warming, The Climate of Man, won the American Association for the Advancement of Science's magazine writing award and a National Academies communications award. She is a two-time National Magazine Award winner. She has written several books including Catastrophe: Man, Nature, and Climate Change and The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History.

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