Responses to Climate and Weather Conditions throughout History brings together a set of case studies on living organisms' adaptation to the evolution of the climate and adjustments to extreme weather conditions. These were first presented at a conference in Lisbon in May 2012.
Aiming to go beyond concerns about recent and forthcoming climate change, which have dominated research in environmental studies, but without excluding them, this book adopts a long-term perspective on the adaptations and adjustments to nature. Although an important group of papers deal with the Portuguese territory and the Iberian Peninsula, in which a complex mosaic of Atlantic and Mediterranean climates helped to shape landscapes and history, Responses to Climate and Weather Conditions throughout History has a broader geographical scope from England, on one side to Italy, on the other. Overall, it aims to offer new contributions looking at the distribution and numbers of animal species and, material, social, cultural and religious responses to weather in the short term and to climate in the long term.
The common ground for the analyses is the reaction of living organisms to what we would call today "natural hazards". In the long term, these are cyclical, and nowadays predictable.
Responses to Climate and Weather Conditions throughout History which is, underpinned by environmental history, presents a holistic vision of the subject. It establishes a dialogue with other fields of knowledge within the humanities (geography, history of religion, and archaeology) and the natural sciences (ecology and biogeography) providing a multilayered interdisciplinary approach to the analysis.