The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History

The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History

Over the last half-billion years, there have been five mass extinctions, when the diversity of life on earth suddenly and dramatically contracted. Scientists around the world are currently monitoring the sixth extinction, predicted to be the most devastating extinction event since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs. This time around, the cataclysm is us.

In prose that is at once frank, entertaining, and deeply informed, The New Yorker writer Elizabeth Kolbert tells us why and how human beings have altered life on the planet in a way no species has before. Interweaving research in half a dozen disciplines, descriptions of the fascinating species that have already been lost, and the history of extinction as a concept, Kolbert provides a moving and comprehensive account of the disappearances occurring before our very eyes. She shows that the sixth extinction is likely to be mankind's most lasting legacy, compelling us to rethink the fundamental question of what it means to be human.

Title:The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9780805092998
Format Type:

    The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History Reviews

  • Amanda

    Seemed a good time to float this bad mama-jama (spoiler alert: we're screwed):Looking for a good horror novel that will keep you up late at night? One that features the most remorseless, inventive, an...

  • Emily (Books with Emily Fox)

    This is officially the most boring book I've read this year.There were some interesting moments but they were too few to compensate. You'll learn more about random rainforest frogs than you ever wante...

  • Riku Sayuj

    Dial M for Murder This is a dark and deeply depressing book, trying hard to be hopeful — on the lines of Douglas Adams' Last Chance to See.Kolbert's book reminds us that we could be the last couple...

  • David

    This book is a very engaging examination of extinctions of animal species through the ages. Elizabeth Kolbert adds a wonderfully personal touch to many of the chapters, as she describes her visits to ...

  • Helen 2.0

    *hides in apocalypse-safe bunker and cries*A goosebump-inducing nonfiction read! The Sixth Extinction is told in a part textbook, part narrative style; the author gives readers hard facts mixed into d...

  • Melki

    “When I hear of the destruction of a species I feel just as if all the works of some great writer had perished.” ~ Theodore RooseveltI don't recall ever reading a book that SO made me want to curl...

  • Jessaka

    "no snow, now ice" by photographer Patty Waymire, National GeographicEvery part of the earth is sacred to my people. Every shining pine needle, every sandy shore, every mist in the dark woods, every ...

  • Diane

    This book both awed and depressed me. From page one, Kolbert writes an impressive survey of how destructive mankind has been to the planet. She gives a brief history of the five mass extinctions that ...

  • Michael

    A well balanced tour of apparent causes for five past massive extinctions and for the current epoch of the human-caused “Sixth Extinction”. The relatively sudden acceleration of extinctions has a ...

  • Bradley

    I've read a lot of non-fiction books that are dry and sometimes gets bogged down in details and others that are very engaging but rather light on the meat. And then sometimes, you get a very cogent wo...