Arts & Leisure

Book review: Under A White Sky: The Nature of the Future — by Elizabeth Kolbert

(Crown Publishing Group)
Pulitzer Prize-winning author Elizabeth Kolbert’s new book may have you shaking your head and chuckling, albeit grimly and under your breath. In the groundbreaking Silent Spring, Rachel Carson denounced the idea of the “control of nature,” unfortunately, this convenient approach to our environment continued, helping to create a new era, the Anthropocene, a period during which human activity has been the dominant influence on climate and the environment. And now, as Kolbert explores, we are faced with attempting to wrest control of the control of nature, an “effort begins with a planet remade and spirals back on itself… First you reverse a river. Then you electrify it.” That last is an actual ecological engineering project Kolbert investigates, many of which begin and end with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The book has three sections, each detailing processes, both implemented and in development, to reverse damage to water, earth and air, as we try to engineer our way out of disastrous climatic change. You will learn about biological efforts gone awry (Asian carp and Cane toads), the land-loss crisis in Louisiana, genetic “rescue,” carbon dioxide turned to stone. The sheer scale of these attempts is astounding making this book a must-read.
— Reviewed by Jenny Lyons of The Vermont Book Shop in Middlebury.
 

8 Best Picks New Nonfiction
Four Hundred Souls: A Community History of African America, by 1619-2019, edited by Ibram X. Kendi and Keisha N. Blain
A Little Devil in America: Notes in Praise of Black Performance, by Hanif Abdurraqib
Dusk, Night, Dawn: On Revival and Courage, by Anne Lamott
The Three Mothers: How the Mothers of Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, and James Baldwin Shaped a Nation, by Anna Malaika Tubbs
Animal, Vegetable, Junk: A History of Food, from Sustainable to Suicidal, by Mark Bittman
The Agitators: Three Friends Who Fought for Abolition and Women’s Rights, by Dorothy Wickenden
Prey: Immigration, Islam, and the Erosion of Women’s Rights, by Ayaan Hirsi Ali
Four Lost Cities: A Secret History of the Urban Age, by Annalee Newitz

Share this story:

More News
Arts & Leisure

Have a good time line dancing at Woodchuck Cider

You might be surprised to know that every Thursday evening, the Cider House at Woodchuck C … (read more)

Arts & Leisure

Leigh Harder exhibit: ‘The Blue Between Day and Night’

‏Leigh Harder was “initially inspired as a young artist to try to catch the particular blu … (read more)

Arts & Leisure

‘Beyond Utopia’ to screen in Middlebury

Next Thursday, April 18, Middlebury New Filmmakers Festival Select Series will present “Be … (read more)

Share this story: