Book Review – The Sixth Extinction

The Sixth ExtinctionThe Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History by Elizabeth Kolbert

Review: Elizabeth Kolbert’s heartbreaking work is both a history of previous mass extinctions and a look at the future of the mass extinction currently happening. She details many human causes of the current extinction event including: climate change, outright killing through over-hunting/fishing and poaching, isolating habitats through clear-cutting and infrastructure building, and intentional/accidental introduction of foreign species. In literary terms, the writing of this book was decent but the chapters seemed to end abruptly. However, Kolbert’s main point, that humans have and are still changing the evolutionary landscape through our actions and inactions, clearly resonates. Even without meaning to, we are deciding the fate of many other species and that will have a profound and enduring legacy even after humans evolve or go extinct.

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