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The Human Age by Diane Ackerman

Sue Baker's view...

For good or ill, Humans have changed Planet Earth, we are at a crossroads – will our vision, optimism and inventiveness allow us to find a way forward? Not just for us but for our fellow creatures, for our planet too? Diane Ackerman is a wise voice, looking at the world shaped by us, often very optimistic about our future, a less than mute witness to the evil we do. She also weighs the pros and cons of advancements, what if we can defeat bacteria with silver nano-technology, what happens to the good bacteria that inhabit our body, what if we can grow spare body parts, will we live longer lives, will we be more reckless if we can just replace the bits that wear out? For an elegant and wide-ranging look to the future, this is hard to beat.

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Adventures in the Anthropocene: A Journey to the Heart of the Planet we Made, Gaia Vince

The World Without Us, Alan Weisman

Who is Sue Baker


The Human Age by Diane Ackerman

In The Human Age award-winning nature writer Diane Ackerman confronts the fact that the human race is now the single dominant force of change on the planet. Humans have 'subdued 75 per cent of the land surface, concocted a wizardry of industrial and medical marvels, strung lights all across the darkness'. We now collect the DNA of vanishing species in a 'frozen ark', equip orang-utans with iPads, create wearable technologies and synthetic species that might one day outsmart us. Ackerman takes us on an exciting journey to understand this bewildering new reality, introducing us to many of the people and ideas now creating - perhaps saving - the future. The Human Age is a surprising, optimistic engagement with the dramatic transformations that have shaped, and continue to alter, our world, our relationship with nature and our prospects for the future. Diane Ackerman is one of our most lyrical, insightful and compelling writers on the natural world and The Human Age is a landmark book.

About the Author

Diane Ackerman has been the finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Non-fiction in addition to many other awards and recognitions for her work, which include the international bestsellers The Zookeeper's Wife and A Natural History of the Senses. She lives with her husband Paul West in Ithaca, New York.

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Book Info

Publication date

30th November 1999


Diane Ackerman

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