Book review: The collapse of western civilization


So having just finished a post on climate futures and argued that we should look to climate fiction (cli-fi) for inspiration, last week I read the excellent fictional future history, The Collapse of Western Civilization: A View from the Future, by Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway. Both authors are probably well known to readers for their outstanding 2010 non-fiction treatise on the history of climate change denial, Merchants of Doubt, which explored how a number of contrarian scientists served the interest of tobacco companies and later the fossil fuel industry in promoting public skepticism and denial over the dangers of their sponsors’ products.

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Regional warlordism versus the digital panopticon

Visitors to this blog will know of my interest in climate futures, a subject I’ve published on in academic outlets. Recently I re-read British sociologist John Urry’s excellent article “Climate Change, Travel and Complex Futures”. I remember first reading this in 2008 and the future scenarios it outlined opened my eyes to the huge issue of climate change adaptation. Indeed, this article and Al Gore’s 2006 movie Inconvenient Truth were major influences in re-directing my research towards the issue of business responses to climate change (which this blog summarizes).

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