Saturday, June 15, 2019

The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History (Free PDF)

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Over the last half-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 prose that is at once frank, entertaining, and deeply informed, The New Yorker writer Elizabeth Kolbert tells us why and how human beings have altered life on the planet in a way no species has before. Interweaving research in half a dozen disciplines, descriptions of the fascinating species that have already been lost, and the history of extinction as a concept, Kolbert provides a moving and comprehensive account of the disappearances occurring before our very eyes. She shows that the sixth extinction is likely to be mankind's most lasting legacy, compelling us to rethink the fundamental question of what it means to be human.

Title Page
Copyright Notice
Author’s Note
I: The Sixth Extinction
II: The Mastodon’s Molars
III: The Original Penguin
IV: The Luck of the Ammonites
V: Welcome to the Anthropocene
VI: The Sea Around Us
VII: Dropping Acid
VIII: The Forest and the Trees
IX: Islands on Dry Land
X: The New Pangaea
XI: The Rhino Gets an Ultrasound
XII: The Madness Gene
XIII: The Thing with Feathers
Selected Bibliography
Photo/Illustration Credits
About the Author
Also by Elizabeth Kolbert

Author Details
"Elizabeth Kolbert"

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