The Seasons Alter by Philip Kitcher
How to Save Our Planet in Six Acts

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The result is a superbly rational, entirely futile exchange of ideas. “Fruitful discussion” did little to resolve slavery or segregation, and it’s largely absent from America’s debate on global warming.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

A landmark work of environmental philosophy that seeks to transform the debate about climate change.


As the icecaps melt and the sea levels rise around the globe—threatening human existence as we know it—climate change has become one of the most urgent and controversial issues of our time. For most people, however, trying to understand the science, politics, and arguments on either side can be dizzying, leading to frustrating and unproductive debates.


Now, in this groundbreaking new work, two of our most renowned thinkers present the realities of global warming in the most human of terms—everyday conversation—showing us how to convince even the most stubborn of skeptics as to why we need to act now. Indeed, through compelling Socratic dialogues, Philip Kitcher and Evelyn Fox Keller tackle some of the thorniest questions facing mankind today:



Is climate change real?
Is climate change as urgent as the “scientists” make it out to be?
How much of our current way of life should we sacrifice to help out a generation that won’t even be born for another hundred years?
Who would pay for the enormous costs of making the planet "green?"
What sort of global political arrangement would be needed for serious action?

These crucial questions play out through familiar circumstances, from an older husband and wife considering whether they should reduce their carbon footprint, to a first date that evolves into a passionate discussion about whether one person can actually make a difference, to a breakfast that becomes an examination over whether or not global warming is really happening. Entertaining, widely accessible, and thoroughly original, the result promises to inspire dialogue in many places, while also giving us a line of reasoning that explodes the so-far impenetrable barriers of obfuscation that have surrounded the discussion.


While the Paris Agreement was an historic achievement that brought solutions within the realm of possibility, The Seasons Alter is a watershed book that will show us how to make those possibilities a reality.

 

About Philip Kitcher

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Philip Kitcher (New York, NY) is John Dewey Professor of Philosophy at Columbia University. He is the author of twelve books, including Living with Darwin: Evolution, Design, and the Future of Faith; In Mendel's Mirror: Philosophical Reflections on Biology; Science, Truth, and Democracy; and The Lives to Come: The Genetic Revolution and Human Possibilities. Professor Kitcher was the first recipient of the Prometheus Prize awarded by the American Philosophical Association for "lifetime contribution to expanding the frontiers of research in philosophy and science." He is also the winner of many other awards, most recently the Award for Distinguished Service to the Columbia Core Curriculum, the Lenfest Distinguished Faculty Award from Columbia University, the Lannan Foundation Notable Book Award (given for Living with Darwin), and the Friend of Darwin Award (given by the National Committee on Science Education).
 
Published April 18, 2017 by Liveright. 288 pages
Genres: Nature & Wildlife, Science & Math. Non-fiction
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Kirkus

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on Jan 24 2017

The result is a superbly rational, entirely futile exchange of ideas. “Fruitful discussion” did little to resolve slavery or segregation, and it’s largely absent from America’s debate on global warming.

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