364 pages, colour photos, colour illustrations, colour tables
The Holocene refers to the period since the end of the last Ice Age some 12 000 years ago. Understanding the climatic and other environmental changes (both natural and anthropogenic) that have occurred over this period is of crucial importance to society. We cannot hope to manage future environmental change without learning the lessons of the past.
In its first and second editions, The Holocene: An Environmental History provided undergraduates with a much-needed coherent scientific account of the great transformation of nature that had taken place during the Holocene, the last 10,000 years in the history of the planet and the period in which we are all now living. This period has included major shifts in climate and human culture, and in the natural environment at every level.
"In conclusion, we find the new edition highly recommendable to students and researchers but to those who are interested in how our modern environment came about and how human kind interacts with nature."
– Geologos Journal, 1 August 2015
"All the sections are very well referenced, making this a good book for serious research or to dip into a particular area of interest to the reader. For a reference work it is surprisingly easy to just sit and read, which I did, and found it interesting through to the last page. I particularly liked the way a wide range of ideas and disciplines were brought together to form a coherent thread throughout the book."
– Proceedings of the Open University Geological Society, 1 April 2015
"The text makes enjoyable reading, and although the author introduces many technical terms, they are all covered in a glossary at the end and included in the index. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Lower-division undergraduates and above; general readers."
– Choice, 1 October 2014
"This excellent book should be mandatory reading for any student taking a palaeobased environmental change module, and academics will also very much enjoy reading Neil Roberts' fine prose."
– The Holocene, 1 October 2014
List of Technical Boxes
Preface to the Third Edition
Chapter 1 INTRODUCTION
Chapter 2 RECONSTRUCTING HOLOCENE ENVIRONMENTS
Chapter 3 THE PLEISTOCENE PRELUDE (>11 700 Cal. yr BP)
Chapter 4 EARLY HOLOCENE ADAPTATIONS (11 700 - 6 000 Cal. yr BP)
Chapter 5 THE FIRST FARMERS
Chapter 6 THE TAMING OF NATURE (6 000 - 1 000 Cal. yr BP)
Chapter 7 THE IMPACT OF MODERN TIMES (1 000 - 0 Cal. yr BP)
Chapter 8 THE ENVIRONMENTAL FUTURE: A HOLOCENE PERSPECTIVE
Appendix: Radiocarbon calibration table
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Neil Roberts is Professor of Geography at Plymouth University in the UK and has been Visiting Senior Researcher at Stanford University, CA. His main research interests are in Holocene environmental change, especially lake sediment records of climate and human impact in Mediterranean regions. He is a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, and served on the US National Academies Committee on climate changes of the last 2 000 Years.