The Long Descent: A User's Guide to the End of the Industrial Age

Overview

SeattleOil.com  The Internet writings of John Michael Greer - beyond any doubt the greatest peak oil historian in the English language - have finally made their way into print. Greer fans will recognize many of the book's passages from previous essays, but will be delighted to see them fleshed out here with additional examples and analysis.The Long Descent is one of the most highly anticipated peak oil books of the year, and it lives up to every ounce of hype. Greer is a captivating, brilliantly inventive ...

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The Long Descent: A User's Guide to the End of the Industrial Age

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Overview

SeattleOil.com  The Internet writings of John Michael Greer - beyond any doubt the greatest peak oil historian in the English language - have finally made their way into print. Greer fans will recognize many of the book's passages from previous essays, but will be delighted to see them fleshed out here with additional examples and analysis.The Long Descent is one of the most highly anticipated peak oil books of the year, and it lives up to every ounce of hype. Greer is a captivating, brilliantly inventive writer with a deep knowledge of history, an impressive amount of mechanical savvy, a flair for storytelling and a gift for drawing art analogies. His new book presents an astonishing view of our society's past, present and future trajectory--one that is unmatched in its breadth and depth. Reviewed by Frank Kaminski

Wired.com  The Long Descent is a welcome antidote to the armageddonism that often accompanies peak oil discussions. "The decline of a civilization is rarely anything like so sudden for those who live through it" writes Greer, encouragingly; it's "a much slower and more complex transformation than the sudden catastrophes imagined by many soical critics today."
The changes that will follow the decline of world petroleum production are likely to be sweeping and global, Greer concludes, but from the perspective of those who live through them these changes are much more likely to take gradual and local forms. Reviewed by Bruce Sterling

Americans are expressing deep concern about US dependence on petroleum, rising energy prices, and the threat of climate change. Unlike the energy crisis of the 1970s, however, there is a lurking fear that now the times are different and the crisis may not easily be resolved.

The Long Descent examines the basis of such fear through three core themes:

  • Industrial society is following the same well-worn path that has led other civilizations into decline, a path involving a much slower and more complex transformation than the sudden catastrophes imagined by so many social critics today.
  • The roots of the crisis lie in the cultural stories that shape the way we understand the world. Since problems cannot be solved with the same thinking that created them, these ways of thinking need to be replaced with others better suited to the needs of our time.
  • It is too late for massive programs for top-down change; the change must come from individuals.

Hope exists in actions that range from taking up a handicraft or adopting an “obsolete” technology, through planting an organic vegetable garden, taking charge of your own health care or spirituality, and building community.

Focusing eloquently on constructive adaptation to massive change, this book will have wide appeal.

John Michael Greer is a certified Master Conserver, organic gardener, and scholar of ecological history. The current Grand Archdruid of the Ancient Order of Druids in America (AODA), his widely-cited blog, The Archdruid Report (thearchdruidreport.blogspot.com) deals with peak oil, among other issues. He lives in Ashland, Oregon.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780865716094
  • Publisher: New Society Publishers
  • Publication date: 9/1/2008
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 662,056
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author


John Michael Greer is a certified Master Conserver, organic gardener and scholar of ecological history. His widely-cited blog, The Archdruid Report, deals with peak oil. He is the author of The Long Descent and lives in Ashland, Oregon.
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Table of Contents


Preface     ix
The End of the Industrial Age     1
The Stories We Tell Ourselves     35
Briefing for the Descent     73
Facing the Deindustrial Age     113
Tools for the Transition     157
The Spiritual Dimension     191
Afterword     221
How Civilizations Fall: A Theory of Catabolic Collapse     225
Bibliography     241
Notes     249
Index     255
About the Author     259
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    John Michael Greer is a very wise man

    This is a wonderful book for people that are wondering what challenges are in store for human beings and the planet we inhabit at this ending of the age of seemingly endless resources. Lots of down to earth advice and resources. An inspiring book; bravo.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted July 23, 2011

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