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The End is Nigh By Henrik Svensen

The End is Nigh by Henrik Svensen

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Summary

Presenting results from many scientific disciplines, including geology, anthropology and sociology, The End is Nigh explores the global history of natural disasters whilst investigating how these tragedies have changed us, the way that we live and how we think.

The End is Nigh Summary

The End is Nigh: A History of Natural Disasters by Henrik Svensen

Spanning more than 2,000 years and many continents, this history of natural disasters includes the Lisbon earthquake of 1755; the San Francisco earthquake of 1906; the South Asian tsunami of 2004; and hurricane Katrina, which devastated New Orleans in 2005; and explores many more. Instead of this book being a mere catalogue of the world's calamities, however, Henrik Svensen has selected incidents that have in some way or other changed the course of history or the way that we view such tragedies: the Lisbon earthquake of 1755, for instance, is a fine example of how earthquake management became a part of new city planning. Svensen also relates gripping eyewitness accounts and individual destinies, investigating how these tragedies have changed us, the way that we live and how we think. When disaster strikes do we react differently today from how people did hundreds of years ago? Svensen shows that victims always seem to ask the same questions: why did this happen to us, and not to someone else? Does the cause lie in unruly natural forces, or are we being punished by God for our sins? Or are disasters perhaps caused by our abuse of the environment? Presenting results from many scientific disciplines, including geology, anthropology and sociology, The End is Nigh at the same time reveals the personal stories of the victims of natural disasters. The result is as instructive as it is affecting, and will appeal to a wide general audience.

The End is Nigh Reviews

'Faced with its catalogue of plagues, fires, earthquakes and tsunamis, one can only hope that The End is Nigh proves an inaccurate title. But Henrik Svensen's fascinating book is more than a catalogue of catastrophes. When crops failed in Sweden a 1,000 years ago, the solution, tempting to us republicans, was a human sacrifice - of the king.' 'Not so much "The end is nigh", more "The end has been nigh many times". Henrik Svensen tackles the topic of how natural disasters shape human society. Understandably, the interplay between religion and science is a prominent theme ... The book's strength is its wealth of examples, some as recent as hurricane Katrina ... The most gripping parts are when geologist Svensen relates his own experience finding spontaneous subterranean fires in Mali.' New Scientist 'an extended essay on the complex relationships among destructive Earth processes, religion, poverty, economics, politics, and popular culture ... The book's most important lesson is that natural disasters are deadliest to those people forced by economic and social circumstances to be the least prepared. Recommended' Choice 'More than anything else, [The End is Nigh] is a multi-faceted and scientifically vivid history of a phenomenon that is shaping our civilization more than we realize.' Aftenposten

About Henrik Svensen

Henrik Svensen is a senior researcher at the Physics of Geological Processes Centre, University of Oslo, Norway.

Additional information

GOR011058144
The End is Nigh: A History of Natural Disasters by Henrik Svensen
Used - Like New
Paperback
Reaktion Books
2012-02-01
224
1861898983
9781861898982
N/A
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
The book has been read, but looks new. The book cover has no visible wear, and the dust jacket is included if applicable. No missing or damaged pages, no tears, possible very minimal creasing, no underlining or highlighting of text, and no writing in the margins

Customer Reviews - The End is Nigh