HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The World Without Us by Alan Weisman
Loading...

The World Without Us

by Alan Weisman

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,1551391,206 (3.85)201
  1. 60
    Mannahatta: A Natural History of New York City by Eric W. Sanderson (SNS101)
  2. 30
    Dirt: The Erosion of Civilizations by David R. Montgomery (meggyweg)
  3. 20
    1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus by Charles C. Mann (aarti)
  4. 20
    After Man: A Zoology of the Future by Dougal Dixon (Carnophile)
  5. 20
    How It Ends: From You to the Universe by Chris Impey (spyrunner)
  6. 20
    Where the Wild Things Were by William Stolzenburg (Othemts)
  7. 10
    Future Evolution by Peter Ward (one-horse.library)
  8. 10
    Paradise Found: Nature in America at the Time of Discovery by Steve Nicholls (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: A look at the natural world from abundance in the past to scarcity in the present.
  9. 10
    Earth Odyssey by Mark Hertsgaard (wandering_star)
    wandering_star: Another jaw-dropping account of humanity's impact on the earth.
  10. 13
    A Scientific Romance by Ronald Wright (wandering_star)
    wandering_star: A Scientific Romance is a fictional, The World Without Us a non-fictional, look at what would happen to our cities in a future without human domination.
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 201 mentions

English (130)  Italian (2)  German (2)  Danish (1)  French (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (137)
Showing 1-5 of 130 (next | show all)
Really liked this book - but it can tough reading at times. Really made me think of water differently, and how damaging it can actually be and how it is always trying to get in, whereever that "in" may be. Weisman draws on a ton of different disciplines here and that's what draws me to this book. Rewarding read.
  zach_mosher | Aug 22, 2014 |
A nice, data-filled look at the ways humans do and do not have a lasting impact on the natural world. As someone trying to imagine what a pastoral future on an under-inhabited planet would look and feel like, I got a lot of compelling images from it.

The only thing missing here is the speculation--probably too abstract for a work like this--that it could indeed be indicative of a much larger system failure if we were not just this planet's, but this universe's only vehicle for self-consciousness and we blew it. Whether from our own actions or a passing asteroid--the phenomenon of something with such potential universal significance simply gone in a geological eye-blink would seem to indicate a much bigger FAIL.

Conscious beings somewhere else who already did know know how to live so harmoniously in their own environment that they could persist and evolve along with the universe could really take the pressure off us there. But until they are discovered, maybe it's worth discussing somewhere (else) what might be lost besides environmental degradation in the world without us. ( )
  CSRodgers | May 3, 2014 |
Because of the scientific terminology and the interlinked data amassed bit by bit, this is not an easy read for narrator or lay listener. But it's a fascinating book, and Grupper handles it well. Grupper's careful narration brings to life Weisman's judicious organization, unambiguous grammatical structure and vivid descriptions of what would become of land, sea, fish, flora and fauna should humans disappear from the face of the earth. Weisman explains the earth's capacity for self-healing. Unchecked by human intervention, a city like New York would flood within days, its buildings and infrastructure would collapse, and soon the city would revert to its original ecosystem. But the message of the book is our legacy to the universe: Every bit of plastic manufactured over the last 80 years or so still remains somewhere in the environment. Weisman and Grupper convert abstract environmental concepts into concrete ideas. Broadly and meticulously researched, finely interwoven journalism and imaginative projection, the book is an utterly convincing call to action.
  MarkBeronte | Mar 4, 2014 |
My expectations were too high. I would have enjoyed this more if I hadn't already read both [book: Guns, Germs, and Steel] and [book: Collapse]; as it was, the book felt both too short and unfocused. ( )
  sben | Feb 11, 2014 |
This book is really about the damage that we humans have done to the earth and it's environment. One only needs observe areas where humans have ceased to be and one can observe amazing changes. It also cites historical examples of change that is observable in the last few hundred years. We have also created some monuments that will last for millenia: Mt Rushmore and radio waves emitted into the universe are examples. Well researched and exampled, the book became boring as the author recounted multiple examples on his theme. I would have enjoyed it better at about half it's length. ( )
  buffalogr | Dec 9, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 130 (next | show all)
That said, the science and factual stuff is, almost invariably, mind-boggling. I did not know, for instance, that ships the length of three football pitches entering the locks of the Panama Canal have only two feet of clearance on each side; that there may well be at least one billion annual bird deaths from flying into glass in the United States alone; or that graphic designers have been called in to imagine what warnings against coming too close to nuclear waste containers will be comprehensible 10,000 or more years from now.
 

» Add other authors (9 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Alan Weismanprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lempinen, UllaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ohinmaa, TiinaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
In memory of Sonia Marguerite with lasting love from a world without you
First words
One June morning in 2004, Ana Maria Santi sat against a post beneath a large palm-thatched canopy, frowning as she watched a gathering of her people in Mazaraka, their hamlet on the Rio Conambu, an Ecuadoran tributary of the upper Amazon.
Quotations
Quoting Les Knight " The last humans could enjoy their final sunsets peacefully, knowing they have returned the planet as close as possible to the Garden of Eden"

" He now fears that the planet is suffering a high fever, and that we are the virus."
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language
Book description
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312347294, Hardcover)

A penetrating, page-turning tour of a post-human Earth
 
In The World Without Us, Alan Weisman offers an utterly original approach to questions of humanity's impact on the planet: he asks us to envision our Earth, without us.
In this far-reaching narrative, Weisman explains how our massive infrastructure would collapse and finally vanish without human presence; which everyday items may become immortalized as fossils; how copper pipes and wiring would be crushed into mere seams of reddish rock; why some of our earliest buildings might be the last architecture left; and how plastic, bronze sculpture, radio waves, and some man-made molecules may be our most lasting gifts to the universe.
The World Without Us reveals how, just days after humans disappear, floods in New York's subways would start eroding the city's foundations, and how, as the world's cities crumble, asphalt jungles would give way to real ones. It describes the distinct ways that organic and chemically treated farms would revert to wild, how billions more birds would flourish, and how cockroaches in unheated cities would perish without us. Drawing on the expertise of engineers, atmospheric scientists, art conservators, zoologists, oil refiners, marine biologists, astrophysicists, religious leaders from rabbis to the Dali Lama, and paleontologists---who describe a prehuman world inhabited by megafauna like giant sloths that stood taller than mammoths---Weisman illustrates what the planet might be like today, if not for us.
From places already devoid of humans (a last fragment of primeval European forest; the Korean DMZ; Chernobyl), Weisman reveals Earth's tremendous capacity for self-healing. As he shows which human devastations are indelible, and which examples of our highest art and culture would endure longest, Weisman's narrative ultimately drives toward a radical but persuasive solution that needn't depend on our demise. It is narrative nonfiction at its finest, and in posing an irresistible concept with both gravity and a highly readable touch, it looks deeply at our effects on the planet in a way that no other book has.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:53:28 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Journalist Weisman offers an original approach to questions of humanity's impact on the planet. Drawing on the expertise of engineers, atmospheric scientists, art conservators, zoologists, oil refiners, marine biologists, astrophysicists, religious leaders, and paleontologists, he illustrates what the planet might be like today if humans disappeared. He explains how our massive infrastructure would collapse and finally vanish without human presence; which everyday items may become immortalized as fossils; how copper pipes and wiring would be crushed into mere seams of reddish rock; why some of our earliest buildings might be the last architecture left; and how plastic, bronze sculpture, radio waves, and some man-made molecules may be our most lasting gifts to the universe. As he shows which human devastations are indelible, and which examples of our highest art and culture would endure longest, Weisman's narrative ultimately drives toward a radical but persuasive solution that needn't depend on our demise.--From publisher description.… (more)

» see all 5 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
14 avail.
850 wanted
6 pay8 pay

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.85)
0.5 2
1 8
1.5 4
2 50
2.5 11
3 213
3.5 80
4 364
4.5 54
5 227

Audible.com

Two editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

See editions

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 92,977,519 books! | Top bar: Always visible