‘When the world changes faster than species can adapt, many fall out,’ writes Elizabeth Kolbert towards the end of her study on the mounting wave of extinction we are living through – and causing. The list of species dispatched by humans, directly or indirectly, is growing every day, yet Kolbert isn’t merely ringing alarm bells or giving a dour post-mortem. As the book’s subtitle suggests, she is interested in the history of extinction itself, from the very concept (which isn’t nearly as old as you might think) to its most dramatic examples to date.
The Sixth Extinction
The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History
by Elizabeth Kolbert
Bloomsbury, $29.99 pb, 319 pp, 9781408851227
Doug Wallen is a freelance arts writer based in Beechworth, Victoria.
If you are a single issue subscriber you will need to upgrade your subscription to view back issues.If you are already subscribed, click here to log in.
Leave a comment
Please note that all comments must be approved by ABR and comply with our Terms & Conditions.
NB: If you are an ABR Online subscriber or contributor, you will need to login to ABR Online in order to post a comment. If you have forgotten your login details, or if you receive an error message when trying to submit your comment, please email your comment (and the name of the article to which it relates) to firstname.lastname@example.org. We will review your comment and, subject to approval, we will post it under your name.