Collapse, Sustainability, and the Environment: How Authors Choose to Fail or Succeed
Reviews in Anthropology
Collapse is a perennial topic among historical scholars, and a favorite source of lessons for our future. Collapse literature often reflects contemporary fears and aspirations. The four books discussed here mirror today's concern with anthropogenic environmental degradation and climate change, and for better or worse, influence a reading public far beyond the academy. Two books focus on an individual collapse—the Classic Maya—and two aspire to a broader treatment. They are unequally successful in their outcomes.
Tainter, J. A. Collapse, Sustainability, and the Environment: How Authors Choose to Fail or Succeed. Reviews in Anthropology 37: 342-371