The Upside of Down: Catastrophe, Creativity, And the Renewal of Civilization

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2008-02-15
  • Publisher: Island Pr

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In this groundbreaking exploration of crisis and revival, Thomas Homer-Dixon argues that the modern world has become increasingly vulnerable to breakdown-whether from terrorist attacks, environmental disasters, energy scarcity, or the widening gap between rich and poor. But it is also ripe for renewal. The Upside of Down shows how collapse can catalyze the renewal of our societies and our lives. Book jacket.

Author Biography

Thomas Homer-Dixon is Director of the Trudeau Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies and Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Toronto. He is author of the acclaimed books The Ingenuity Gap (Knopf, 2001) and Environment, Scarcity, and Violence (Princeton University Press, 1999).

Table of Contents

Prologue: Firestormp. 1
San Francisco, Thursday, April 19, 1906
Rome, Tuesday, May 13, 2003
The White Wall
Tectonic Stressesp. 9
Synchronous Failure
Beyond Management
From Crash to Creativity
The Prospective Mind
A Keystone in Timep. 31
The Thermodynamics of Empire
A Stone's Journey
Colosseum Calories
Energy Return on Investment
The Exigencies of Energy
We Are like Running Waterp. 57
Demographic Momentum
No Land Is an Island
Growth's Consequences
So Long, Cheap Slavesp. 77
From Geopolitics to Geoscarcity
Oil's Peak
Where Are the Giants?
"The World Economy Has No Plan B"
Earthquakep. 101
Negative Synergy
Connectivity and Speed
A Clausewitz of Complexity
Boundary Jumping
Flesh of the Landp. 129
Stages of Denial
Beyond the Horizon
Squeezed in a Vise
The Anthropocene
Hollow Societies
Closing the Windowsp. 153
Kilimanjaro's Retreat
Confidence Game
Back Casting
Momentum and Feedback
Walking toward a Cliff
Frayed Networks
No Equilibriump. 177
Heading for the Exits
Income Gap
The Dirty Little Secret of Development Economics
Curious Fixation
Cultivating Discontent
The Growth Imperative
Clouded Hope
Cycles within Cyclesp. 207
Licensing Denial
Why Don't We Face Reality?
Diminishing Returns
Overextending the Growth Phase
Disintegrationp. 235
Checkerboard Landscape
Energy Subsidy
Ruthless Extraction
Holland Times Ten
Motivation, Opportunity, and Framing
Power Shift
A Shattered Sphere
Catagenesisp. 265
A Watch List
Moments of Contingency
Open Source
Ballbek: The Last Rockp. 297
Notesp. 311
Illustration Creditsp. 405
Acknowledgmentsp. 413
Indexp. 417
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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