The Vanishing Face of Gaia

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Lovelock, James, The Vanishing Face of Gaia, (New York: Basic Books, 2009) In The Vanishing Face of Gaia, James Lovelock details not only the foundations and history of his Gaia hypothesis, but also gives a detailed explanation as to the events that he believes will cause Earth, or Gaia, as he calls it to give a better name to what he considers something living, to be significantly altered to the point where droves of people will be forced to migrate to habitable areas for access to even a middling lifestyle in comparison to those enjoyed today, or simply perish as an effect of Gaia self-regulating. His argument is based off of observation and experimentation instead of the results of computer models, which he makes abundantly clear. His belief is that Gaia, due to the destructive forces of man and starting with the advent of fire will be drastically altered due to global warming, which he consistently refers to as global heating. He envisions a best case scenario world in which a large portion of currently habitable and densely populated lands, such as southeast Asia and southern North America, will become largely inhabitable due to atmospheric conditions, causing masses of people to migrate to areas whose climates shall serve as ‘lifeboats’ for the sinking ship that is a massive amount of continental areas. A theme of dire circumstance in which radical measures must be taken in an effort to save or at least prolong the lifespan of Gaia is presented early in the book. A mood of stark pessimism and doom are openly injected into the writing, as it is intended to have a whistle blowing effect to bring the threat of devastation to the masses. The need for action to be taken against the coming plight is compared to Britain’s need for entry into World War II, as Lovelock calls for ‘modern Churchills’ to lead in a war against the ‘business as usual’ approach to
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