The publication of Rachel Carson’s book Silent Spring (1962) is widely regarded as one of the key moments in the development of the global environment movement. In the wake of Silent Spring, science fiction writer Frank Herbert published the first of the Dune series in 1965. Herbert presented complex descriptions of alternate planetary ecologies, with influential characters known as ‘planetologists’ (a new film version is due out this year). In 1972, the image of the ‘Blue Marble’ was released, a photo of Earth taken by the Apollo 17 crew on their way to the moon, also widely considered to be critical in influencing public understandings of our finite planet. Each of these developments extended a long history of exploratory research, experimentation and imagination about the deep and complex connections of Earth systems. Sarah Dry’s Waters of the World investigates six critical figures in this history.... (read more)
To complement the reviews and commentaries in our Environment issue, we invited a number of writers and scholars to nominate a book that will give readers a better appreciation of the environment.... (read more)
Humans live on the Blue Planet: seventy per cent of ‘Earth’ is covered by oceans. We increasingly hear these descriptions: that oceans are the largest habitat, that eighty per cent of all species live there, that they determine weather and climate. All of which, and much more, is true ...... (read more)
Each year, ABR’s prestigious Calibre Essay Prize, one of the world’s leading prizes for a new essay, attracts some of the finest writers from Australia and overseas.
To complement our coverage of new books on the subject, we invited a number of writers, scholars, and environmentalists to nominate the books that have had the greatest effect on them from an environmental point of view.... (read more)
The Calibre Essay Prize, now in its eleventh year, has played a major role in the resurgence of the literary essay. This year we received almost 200 essays from fourteen countries. ABR Editor Peter Rose – who judged the Prize with Sheila Fitzpatrick (award-winn ...
It is quiet and cool and dark blue. At this depth the pressure on my body is double what it is at the surface: my heartbeat has slowed, blood has started to withdraw from my extremities and move into the space my compressed lungs have created ...... (read more)