Resilience, Decline, and Revival from Ancient Times to the Present
Author: Federica Sulas,Innocent Pikirayi
Category: Water and civilization
As water availability, management and conservation become global challenges, there is now wide consensus that historical knowledge can provide crucial information to address present water crises. Moreover, water takes in different forms from rainfall to groundwater and soil moisture, and history offers unique opportunities to appreciate the array of solutions and mechanisms societies have developed over time to deal with water in all its forms. This volume explores how ancient water systems relate to resilience and sustainability in the present and inform the future. By eliciting historic water management systems and responses to, and impact of water-driven catastrophes in different environments in the past, contributors to this volume present historical knowledge about the long-term resilience and sustainable use of water resources. But rather than limiting the discussion to issue of the past in the context of that past, the volume goes further to address the resonance and legacy of water histories in the present and future. The volume speaks to an archaeological and non-archaeological scholarly audience, and is a primary reference text on the subject for researchers and graduate students from a variety of disciplinary and sub-disciplinary backgrounds including archaeology, anthropology, history, ecology, geography, geology, architecture, and development studies.
Freshwater shortages will affect 75% of the world’s population by 2050. Mithen puts this crisis into context by exploring 10,000 years of water management. Thirst tells of civilizations defeated by the water challenge, and of technological ingenuity that sustained communities in hostile environments. Work with nature, not against it, he advises.
The Epic Struggle for Wealth, Power, and Civilization
Author: Steven Solomon
Publisher: Harper Collins
Far more than oil, the control of water wealth throughout history has been pivotal to the rise and fall of great powers, the achievements of civilization, the transformations of society's vital habitats, and the quality of ordinary daily lives. Today, freshwater scarcity is one of the twenty-first century's decisive, looming challenges, driving new political, economic, and environmental realities across the globe. In Water, Steven Solomon offers the first-ever narrative portrait of the power struggles, personalities, and breakthroughs that have shaped humanity from antiquity's earliest civilizations through the steam-powered Industrial Revolution and America's century. Meticulously researched and masterfully written, Water is a groundbreaking account of man's most critical resource in shaping human destinies, from ancient times to our dawning age of water scarcity.
The Past, Present, and Future of the World's Most Vital Resource
Author: David Sedlak
Publisher: Yale University Press
Turn on the faucet, and water pours out. Pull out the drain plug, and the dirty water disappears. Most of us give little thought to the hidden systems that bring us water and take it away when we’re done with it. But these underappreciated marvels of engineering face an array of challenges that cannot be solved without a fundamental change to our relationship with water, David Sedlak explains in this enlightening book. To make informed decisions about the future, we need to understand the three revolutions in urban water systems that have occurred over the past 2,500 years and the technologies that will remake the system.div /DIVdivThe author starts by describing Water 1.0, the early Roman aqueducts, fountains, and sewers that made dense urban living feasible. He then details the development of drinking water and sewage treatment systems—the second and third revolutions in urban water. He offers an insider’s look at current systems that rely on reservoirs, underground pipe networks, treatment plants, and storm sewers to provide water that is safe to drink, before addressing how these water systems will have to be reinvented. For everyone who cares about reliable, clean, abundant water, this book is essential reading./DIV
A history of the role of water in shaping civilization covers the aqueducts of ancient Greece, the centuries-long efforts to tame rivers in China, the Industrial Revolution, and present-day efforts to solve sustainability problems.
Great Books of China offers concise introductions – each of them accompanied by generous quotation (in English) from the book in question – to sixty-six works in the canon of Chinese literature. The books chosen reflect the chronological and thematic breadth of Chinese literary tradition, ranging from such classics as The Book of Songs and the Confucian Analects, through popular dramas and novels (The Romance of the Western Chamber; The Water Margin), twentieth-century political and biographical works (Quotations from Chairman Mao, the autobiography of the last emperor) and modern novels that are little known in the West (Memories of South Peking, Six Chapters from a Cadre School Life). Frances Wood presents a comprehensive, accessible and richly informative primer for the uninitiated; a box of delights that opens up an entire literary culture to the inquisitive reader.
These three volumes present an original exploration of all aspects of water--social, cultural, political, religious, historical, economic and technological--from ancient times until the present day. Among the varied themes, the contributors examine the changing histories of water as a private or common good, the politics of water at local, urban, national and international level, water in cities, great river plans, dams, river biographies, and cultural constructions of water--images of water in religion, myth, literature and art. With empirical and ethnographic case studies from around the world the three volumes together represent one of the most complete and up to date accounts of the central role of water in the history and development of humanity.
Crime and punishment, criminal law and its administration, are areas of ancient history that have been explored less than many other aspects of ancient civilizations. Throughout history women have been affected by crime both as victims and as offenders. Yet, in the ancient world customary laws were created by men, formal laws were written by men, and both were interpreted and enforced by men.
Significant, and usually unwelcome, surprises, such as floods, financial crisis, epileptic seizures, or material rupture, are the topics of Extreme Events in Nature and Society. The book, authored by foremost experts in these fields, reveals unifying and distinguishing features of extreme events, including problems of understanding and modelling their origin, spatial and temporal extension, and potential impact. The chapters converge towards the difficult problem of anticipation: forecasting the event and proposing measures to moderate or prevent it. Extreme Events in Nature and Society will interest not only specialists, but also the general reader eager to learn how the multifaceted field of extreme events can be viewed as a coherent whole.
Although many of us feel we can prepare for our future by thinking, acting, and learning using present methods and values, nothing is farther from the truth, especially in todays rapidly changing world. A newborn child enters a world not of his or her own making. Each succeeding generation inherits the values, accomplishments, hopes, successes, and failings of previous generations. And they inherit the results of the decisions made by those generations.
From the author of Guns, Germs and Steel, Jared Diamond's Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Survive is a visionary study of the mysterious downfall of past civilizations. Now in a revised edition with a new afterword, Jared Diamond's Collapse uncovers the secret behind why some societies flourish, while others founder - and what this means for our future. What happened to the people who made the forlorn long-abandoned statues of Easter Island? What happened to the architects of the crumbling Maya pyramids? Will we go the same way, our skyscrapers one day standing derelict and overgrown like the temples at Angkor Wat? Bringing together new evidence from a startling range of sources and piecing together the myriad influences, from climate to culture, that make societies self-destruct, Jared Diamond's Collapse also shows how - unlike our ancestors - we can benefit from our knowledge of the past and learn to be survivors. 'A grand sweep from a master storyteller of the human race' Daily Mail 'Riveting, superb, terrifying' Observer 'Gripping ... the book fulfils its huge ambition, and Diamond is the only man who could have written it' Economist 'This book shines like all Diamond's work' Sunday Times Jared Diamond (b. 1937) is Professor of Geography at the University of California, Los Angeles. Until recently he was Professor of Physiology at the UCLA School of Medicine. He is the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of the widely acclaimed Guns, Germs, and Steel: the Fates of Human Societies, which also is the winner of Britain's 1998 Rhone-Poulenc Science Book Prize.
In these essays honoring ethicist Max Stackhouse, leading Christian scholars consider the historical roots and ongoing resources of public theology as a vital element in the church s engagement with global issues. / Public Theology for a Global Society explores the concept of public theology and the challenge of relating theological claims to a larger social and political context. The range of essays included here allows readers to understand public theology as both theological practice and public speech, and to consider the potential and limits of public theology in ecumenical and international networks. / The essays begin by introducing the reader to the development of public theology as an area of study and to the historical interrelationship of religious, legal, and professional categories. The later essays engage the reader with emerging problems in public theology, as religious communities encounter shifting publics that are being transformed by globalization and sweeping political and technological changes. / The breadth and scholarship of Public Theology for a Global Society make this volume a fitting tribute to Stackhouse a central figure in Christian ethics and pioneer in the church s study of globalization.
The discussion on arsenic in the environment is complex and must grasp the importance of very many, mostly unrelated works on individual aspects. This volume represents one of the first comprehensive and interdisciplinary examinations into arsenic's behaviour in air, water, soils, sediments, plants and the human body. Based on state-of-the-art investigations into the global arsenic cycle, the related human toxicology and available remediation technologies, arsenic is assessed holistically in all the environmental compartments. Using the results of primary research, the authors offer concrete suggestions for risk reduction and management of environmental pollution that allow the reader to successfully tackle similar problems and find sustainable solutions. The book consists of three essential parts: Review of the current knowledge of arsenic behaviour in the environment (global biogeochemical cycles), toxicology, remediation techniques, immobilization technologies and environmental legislation Case studies for mining-related arsenic problems Discussion of mitigation and remediation technologies and approaches such as environmental education, hygiene training, backed by real experience and successful implementation in the study area In a highly coherent manner, the book makes use of 120 tables and figures, a large number of literature citations, and very detailed subject index (that encompasses references) to provide rapid and up-to-date access to all relevant information. Cross-references provide a great manoeuvrability between the chapters. The book delivers very insightful and hands-on approaches for graduate students and professionals working on arsenic questions not only in environmental science, but also in the fields of environmental engineering, medicine and social science.
A prevalent and increasingly important issue, arsenic removal continues to be one of the most important areas of water treatment. Conventional treatment plants may employ several methods for removing arsenic from water. Commonly used processes include oxidation, sedimentation, coagulation and filtration, lime treatment, adsorption onto sorptive media, ion exchange, and membrane filtration. However, in the most affected regions, large conventional treatment plants may not be appropriate and factors such as cost and acceptability as well as performance must be considered. This book, published in cooperation with leading experts in this field, provides a thorough analysis of the problems, solutions, and possible alternatives to achieve safe water production on a global scale.