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About this book
About this book
Demonstrating how the story of our past can help us better understand the present, geographer Wood discusses the formation of the Earth's atmosphere, oceans, continents, and mountains; the origin of life; the evolution of the human species; the spread of agricultural production; and the growth of international trade.
Missing the Global in the Local and the Local in the Global. The Idea of Prehistory Makes It Hard to Think about Global Change. The Beginning of History: The Land (and This Book and You and Me) Is Made of Matter. The Land Is the Functioning Skin of the Planet. The Land Lives, Suspended in a Network of Unholy Complication. Emergent Land Turning Green: The Coevolution of the Continents and Atmospheric Oxygen. The Land Covers Itself with Plants and Animals (and the Human Animal Comes Down from the Trees). The Land Covers Itself with Humans. Humans Cover Themselves with the Land. The History Hidden by Paradise: A Case Study.
Five Billion Years of Global Change is a dazzling intellectual journey that has the potential to alter profoundly the ways in which we think about our planet, human history, and our own lives. The book depicts an intricately interwoven physical reality at a multiplicity of scales, from aeons to nanosecond, from cosmos to the subatomic. Commanding a prodigious range of knowledge, Denis Wood writes in a captivating style all his own.--Wilbur Zelinsky, Department of Geography (Emeritus), The Pennsylvania State University
"This book offers a deep meditation on the relation between place and time as the environments in which we live. Not since Hofstadter's "Godel, Escher, Bach" has a single text presented a thesis at once so radical and completely formed. Every section overturns popular preconceptions. Time and again, what at first seems an absurd statement becomes fully evident a few pages later. It is this type of inversion of the common wisdom that makes the book an important de