Global Life Systems / Edition 1

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"Humans did not begin as a global species; we had to expand to become one. And we could not have done so without other living organisms becoming global along with us." Robert P. Clark develops in this book a global life systems perspective that delineates how biological forces mutually reinforce one another—and what their globalization has meant for both human society and the biosphere. While he resists biological "determinism," Clark traces interconnected developments among population, disease, agriculture, trade, fuels, and other life systems to more thoroughly explore and elucidate the globalization of human endeavors within an ever evolving context of nature and environment. His lucid and richly documented book offers a fresh look at social evolution and a broader basis for understanding the contemporary context for global change.

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Editorial Reviews

Population Studies
This is a well-organized book, clearly argued, and the writing is accessible. The central story line is leavened with interesting examples and anecdotes to light and lighten the path.
Stephen K. Sanderson
In this important new book, Robert Clark shows that globalization is not a process that began twenty or even five hundred years ago, but rather has roots that are to be found thousands of years back into the human past. Moreover, it has been not just an economic process but a biological and demographic one as well. Those who wish to understand the current process of globalization in its proper historical context will do well to read this book.
Clark (government, George Mason University) develops a global life systems perspective that delineates how biological forces mutually reinforce one another, and what their globalization has meant for both human society and the biosphere. Resisting biological determinism, he traces interconnected developments among population, disease, agriculture, trade, fuels, and other life systems to explore the globalization of human endeavors within an evolving context of nature and environment. He examines case studies of the biology of the Silk Road, the biological impact of Europeans on eastern North America between 1600 and 1800, and feeding industrial cities. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780742500754
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 2/28/2001
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 362
  • Product dimensions: 0.81 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 6.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Robert P. Clark is professor of government at George Mason University.

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Table of Contents

Part 1 Global Life Systems Chapter 2 Life Systems and Globalization Chapter 3 Population Chapter 4 Food Chapter 5 Disease Part 6 Case Studies Chapter 7 Agriculture Comes to Europe Chapter 8 The Biology of the Silk Road Chapter 9 The Biological Impact of Europeans on Eastern North America, 1600-1800 Chapter 10 Feeding Industrial Cities Part 11 Consequences Chapter 12 Global Food Networks in the Information Age Chapter 13 Emerging (and Re-emerging) Infectious Diseases Chapter 14 The Loss of Biodiversity Chapter 15 Where Do We Go from Here?: Biological Dimensions of Interplanetary and Interstellar Migration

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