Not the Future We Ordered The Psychology of Peak Oil and the Myth of Eternal Progress

ISBN-10: 1780490887

ISBN-13: 9781780490885

Edition: 2013

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Description:

For well over half a century, since the first credible warnings of petroleum depletion were raised in the 1950s, contemporary industrial civilization has been caught in a remarkable paradox: a culture more focused on problem solving than any other has repeatedly failed to deal with, or even consider, the problem most likely to bring its own history to a full stop. The coming of peak oil—the peaking and irreversible decline of world petroleum production—poses an existential threat to societies in which every sector of the economy depends on petroleum-based transport, and no known energy source can scale up extensively or quickly enough to replace dwindling oil supplies. Resolute action on personal, local, national, and global levels over the decades just passed might have staved off a future of economic contraction, political turmoil, and immense human suffering. Instead, governments and populations of all the world’s industrial nations collectively closed their eyes to the impending crisis.Not The Future We Orderedis the first study of the psychological dimensions of that decision and its consequences, as a case study in the social psychology of collective failure, and as an issue with which psychologists and therapists will be confronted repeatedly in the years ahead. At the core of the modern world’s inability to come to grips with the challenge of peak oil are a set of beliefs that amount to a civil religion of progress, in which the concept of progress is credited with the invincibility and beneficence other religions assign to their gods. This civil religion of progress lends legitimacy to policies that subordinate all other values to economic growth, place blind faith in untested technologies, and rule out serious consideration of the long-term downsides of today’s trends.The religious faith in progress that makes such policies seem sensible, and provides justification for the marginalization of alternative views, has become one of the core factors driving contemporary societies headlong toward a wrenching confrontation with the hard limits of a finite planet. As the gap widens between today’s expectations of perpetual progress and tomorrow’s experiences, peak oil will become a significant mental health issue across the currently industrialized world. When the future we ordered fails to show up on schedule, cognitive dissonance and other psychological impacts common in times of severe cultural dislocation will likely show up as well, driving counterproductive responses on the personal and collective scales. Understanding the psychology that backed industrial civilization into a corner called peak oil is a crucial step in dealing with these consequences, and to this, Not The Future We Orderedoffers a clear and readable guide
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Book details

List price: $12.99
Copyright year: 2013
Publisher: Karnac Books
Publication date: 2/1/2013
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 160
Size: 5.00" wide x 7.75" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 0.396
Language: English

Shaun R. Harper is on the faculty in the Graduate School of Education, Africana Studies, and Gender Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, where he also serves as director of the Center for the Study of Race and Equity in Education. He is co�founder of the Penn GSE Black Male Grad Prep Academy, an initiative that prepares undergraduate men for doctoral study in education fields. Professor Harper maintains an active research agenda that examines race and gender in higher education, Black male college access and achievement, and college student engagement. He is author of over 80 peer-�reviewed journal articles and other academic publications. His 10 books include Student Engagement in Higher Education (2009, 2014), College Men and Masculinities (2010), and the 5th edition of Student Services: A Handbook for the Profession (2011). He is co-editor of the Stylus Actionable Research for Social Justice in Education series; editor-in-chief of the Routledge book series on Race and Racism in U.S. Higher Education; and associate editor of Educational Researcher, a journal of the American Educational Research Association (AERA). Dr. Harper is principal investigator of the New York City Black and Latino Male High School Achievement Study, a project that entailed individual interviews with 415 young men of color from 40 public high schools. Several associations have praised his scholarship, including the Association for the Study of Higher Education (2008 Early Career Award), AERA (2010 Early Career Award), and the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (2012 Robert H. Shaffer Award for Faculty Excellence).John Michael Greer is the author of four books on peak oil and the future of industrial society, The Long Descent, The Ecotechnic Future, The Wealth of Nature and Not The Future We Ordered, and also writes the widely cited peak oil blog "The Archdruid Report." He lives in Cumberland, Maryland, an old mill town in the Appalachian mountains, with his wife Sara.

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