Book Reviews


Posted By October 19, 2005 No Comments

While there was much to object to in Jared Diamond’s Guns, Germs and Steel, it also made a number of points that were worthy of consideration. Diamond’s latest book Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed (Penguin Group, New York, 2005) yields the same result. Jared uses a five point framework to explore how human societies can overstrain their environment and collapse. These are the practices of any society with respect to their environment; climate change (a frequent occurrence throughout human history – heck, our species probably evolved as it did because of the rapid changes in climate over the past 600,000 years); the hostility of neighbors; the nature of friendlier ties with the same neighbors; and the ability to find and adopt changes when these are necessary. His book comes well armed with numerous examples of success and failure.