Marxist environmental essays … Science and the Anthropocene … Is disaster avoidable? … Capitalism at sea … Beef and class struggle … Climate and the biggest volcano
Climate & Capitalism can’t review every book we receive, but this column lists and links to those that seem relevant to Climate & Capitalism’s mission, along with brief descriptions. Titles described here may be reviewed in future. Inclusion of a book does not imply endorsement, or that we agree with everything (or even anything!) these books say.
Martin Empson, editor
SYSTEM CHANGE NOT CLIMATE CHANGE
A Revolutionary Response to Environmental Crisis
Marxist essays on the global crisis. Ian Angus on Metabolic Rift; Kohei Saito on Marx’s Ecosocialism; Camilla Royle on the Anthropocene; Martin Empson on agriculture; Amy Leather on plastic; Sarah Ensor on biodiversity; Ian Rappel on ‘Natural Capital’; Suzanne Jeffery on social movements; Michelle Robidoux and Carolyn Egan on tar sands and Indigenous rights. Available July 1.
Jan Zalasiewicz, Colin N. Waters, Mark Williams, Colin P. Summerhayes, editors
THE ANTHROPOCENE AS A GEOLOGICAL TIME UNIT
A Guide to the Scientific Evidence and Current Debate
Cambridge University Press, 2019
Top international experts detail the scientific case that a new epoch in Earth history has begun. The scale, manner and rate of global environmental change are placed within the context of planetary processes and deep geological time. An essential guide to the latest findings of Geology and Earth System science about the radical transformation of the planet in our time.
Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out?
Macmillan/Henry Holt, 2019
Environment activist Bill McKibben says we’re at a bleak moment in human history: we’ll either confront that bleakness or watch civilization slip away. Drawing on his experience in building 350.org, the first global citizens movement to combat climate change, he suggests possible ways out of the trap.
Penny McCall Howard
ENVIRONMENT, LABOUR AND CAPITALISM AT SEA
‘Working the ground’ in Scotland
Manchester University Press, 2018
Drawing on personal experience working on fishing boats in Scotland, Howard explores how fishers make the sea productive through their labor, using technologies ranging from wooden boats to digital GPS plotters to create familiar places in a seemingly hostile environment. It shows how their lives are affected by capitalist forces in the markets they sell to, forces that shape even the relations between fishers on the same boat. (See Review)
RED MEAT REPUBLIC
A Hoof-to-Table History of How Beef Changed America
Princeton University Press, 2019
In the late 1800s, beef production in the U.S. went from small local operations to a giant centralized industry, with cattle bred on ranches in the West, slaughtered in Chicago, and shipped nationwide. Violent conflicts determined who would reap the benefits of this new industry and who would bear its heavy costs.
TAMBORA AND THE YEAR WITHOUT A SUMMER
How a Volcano Plunged the World into Crisis
Polity Books, 2019
The largest volcanic eruption ever recorded took place in Indonesia in April 1815 — and no region on earth was untouched by its effects. This comprehensive account of the impact of one of the greatest environmental disasters in human history offers a case study for how societies and individuals respond to climate change, what risks emerge and how they might be overcome.