End of the Year Book Lists
Most end-of-the-year lists of books comprise books that other smart people read earlier and many of the lists comprise the same books all time. Often the lists comprise the books that have topped the sales lists during the year. The underlying message is as “if you haven’t read these books, you are a cultural bar-bar, does not belong to the well-informed elite and not able to go along in conversations”.
Anyhow, this is passive, or if you like, even intellectual laziness, uncritically following main-stream media.
Interesting Reading Areas for 2021
Another, more active approach is to make a list by your own about Interesting Reading Areas (IRA), areas of your interest for developing and knowledge gaining. And then look for relevant writers, books and DVD’s belonging to that IRA. As we changed the focus of the blog a little, our Interesting Reading Areas for 2021 are mainly about new thinking about climate change and sustainability. Please note, we have not yet read the books!
However, we invite you to make your own IRA en to find interesting books and thinkers. By doing some searching at the internet for books in the categories Provocation and Alternatives. Just to challenge your thinking ,and to escape from books that classify as Mainstream (description, interpretation or explanations, defending the standard world view, confirming current thinking) or Improvements (suggestions for gradual, but cumulative betterment of more-of-the-same thinking).
Time-fulness: How Thinking Like a Geologist Can Help Save the World
Few of us have any conception of the enormous timescales in our planet’s long history, and this narrow perspective underlies many of the environmental problems we are creating for ourselves.
This interesting book presents a novel way of thinking about our place in time, enabling us to decide on multigenerational timescales.
False Alarm: How Climate Change Panic Costs Us Trillions, Hurts the Poor, and Fails to Fix the Planet
Hurricanes batter our coasts. Wildfires rage across the American West. Glaciers collapse in the Artic. Politicians, activists, and the media espouse a common message: climate change is destroying the planet, and we must take drastic action immediately to stop it.
In panic, world leaders have committed to wildly expensive but largely ineffective policies that hamper growth and crowd out more pressing investments in human capital, from immunization to education.
On Time and Water
In the next hundred years, the nature of water on Earth will undergo a fundamental change. These changes will affect all life on earth, everyone that we know, and everyone that we love. It is more complex than the mind can comprehend, greater than all of our experience, bigger than language.
What words can grasp an issue of this magnitude?
What a Plant Knows: A Field Guide to the Senses
How does a Venus flytrap know when to snap shut? Can an orchid get jet lag? Does a tomato plant feel pain when you pluck a fruit from its vines? And does your favourite fern care whether you play Bach or the Beatles? Combining innovative research with lively storytelling, biologist Daniel Chamovitz explores how plants experience our shared Earth–through sight, smell, touch, hearing, memory, and even awareness. This rare inside look at the life of plants will surprise and delight.
Planet of the Humans
“Planet of the Humans” is a documentary that dares to say what no one else will — selling out the green movement to wealthy interests and corporate America. Removed from the debate is the only thing that MIGHT save us: getting a grip on our out-of-control human presence and consumption. Why is this not THE issue? Because that would be bad for profits, bad for business.
A full-frontal assault on our sacred cows, this documentary generates danger, debate, and, hopefully, a willingness to see our survival in a novel way—before it’s too late.
The Secret Network of Nature: The Delicate Balance of All Living Things
Peter Wohlleben spent over twenty years working for the forestry commission in Germany before leaving to put his ideas of ecology into practice. He now runs an environmentally friendly woodland in Germany, where he is working towards the return of primeval forests, and caring for both wild and domestic animals.
They have celebrated Wohlleben for his distinctive approach to writing about nature; he brings to life groundbreaking scientific research through his observations of nature and the animals he lives amongst. He is also the author of international bestsellers including The Hidden Life of Trees and The Inner Life of Animals.
The Great Mental Models Project
The Great Mental Models project is the clearest way to change the way you see the world, avoid problems before they happen, and make better decisions. The series comprises four volumes that cover the core, timeless, ideas that you should have learned in school and applies them to real life.
This instant Wall-Street Journal bestseller is the breakthrough guide you need to improve your thinking.
Volume 1: General Thinking Concepts covers essential general thinking models.. This volume details nine of the most versatile, all-purpose mental models. Discover the forces governing the universe and how to focus your efforts so you can harness them to your advantage, rather than fight them or worse yet — ignore them.
Volume Two: Physics, Chemistry, and Biology explains the foundational concepts of physics, chemistry, and biology. . Each chapter explains the key concepts and then explores how to use them as a model by examining historical examples.
A Life on Our Planet: My Witness Statement and a Vision for the Future
Attenborough gives an impression of what could happen to the planet over the course of a lifetime beginning in 2020 and lasting as long as his own, were human activity to continue unchanged. The Amazon rainforest could degrade into a savanna; the Arctic could lose all ice during summer; coral reefs could die; soil overuse could cause food crises. These irreversible events would cause mass extinction and exacerbate climate change further.
Amongst other, Attenborough proposes that bringing countries out of poverty providing universal healthcare and improving girls’ education would make the growing human population stabilise sooner and at a lower level.
The Great Derangement: Climate Change and the Unthinkable
The Great Derangement: Climate Change and the Unthinkable by novelist Amitav Ghosh offers a new non-fiction work that aims to confront climate change by reflecting on our ‘deranged‘ modes of political and socio-economic organisation via three themes: literature, history and politics. For a long time, we have been talking about climate change as a scientific question but here fiction meets science. Amitav suggests that what lies at the heart of the climate crisis is a failure of imagination to confront what we can’t see. He predicts that our great-grandchildren will look back at our current period as one of denial.
Interesting Books? One can safely assume that most of the books published each year (approximately 2,200,000) belong to mainstream thinking. Let’s say 90%, so there will be left some 220,000 interesting books worthwhile to read. How to select these interesting books? Distinguish between the categories Mainstream, Improvement, Criticism, and Provocations and Alternatives,