The World Without Us, by Alan Weisman, is a book which demonstrates what the world would look like if all humans suddenly vanished, leaving everything else behind. The book delves into ideas about animals that would evolve and how our structures would deteriorate, and also explains how much we as a species have altered our planet. The book offers a hopeful look at the fate of the environment and shows us how powerful nature truly is. First, Weisman discussed the fate of our structures.
How our homes would be inhabited by animals and insects along with mold and water It is suggested that all of ur houses would be almost unrecognizable within a matter of days. Interestingly, Weisman touches on the fact that older materials tend to be more sustainable than newer materials, making the ancient structures long outlive our modern buildings. Along with our homes, the author talks about the future of the cities. He goes into Manhattan’s water problems and how the water always ends up getting into the subway system due to the lack of roots in this concrete Jungle.
Also, without human maintenance, many of our structures would be destroyed by nature, such as piping and bridges. Weisman says that the plants will learn to live with the imported plants and animals will return to their natural habitat, and get their land back. In the next chapter, he talks about how a glacier is due to form very soon based on the fact that the last one was 11,000 years ago. However, due to global warming, this may take extra time. He also discusses evolution and compares the lion to the ape. He then goes on to discuss Thomas Jefferson and describes him as the father of paleontology.
Jefferson did not believe animals could go extinct so was shocked of his findings of he bones of an extinct animal. Weisman talks about Paul Martin, whose studies have shown that climate change has been a huge factor in mass extinction. He relates this to how humans have pushed animals out of their homes and drove them into places unsuitable for them to live. However, some animals can adapt to change, such as the african wild life. The animals in africa have learned to survive amongst the humans because they evolved with them. Weisman discusses the future of our buildings and tell us what will last.
He says hat all the buildings built post WWII will crumble due to our use of cheaper materials. The oldest structures may be the ones that survive the longest. The author goes on to discuss the unsure future of plastic and how it has not yet been discovered to have a natural death, so no one is quite sure what will happen to it. Next, Weisman discusses what the world would like like without farms. He says the metals we left in the ground would be there for a long time afterward which would take the soil a very long to recover.
On another note, the fate of the architectural onders are diverse. The English Channel Tunnel is predicted to last long before flooding, so animals could most likely cross it. The Great Wall of China would not last without human maintenance due to tree roots. The Panama Canal would not last either and eventually the water will escape the locks set in place without anyone controlling it. welsman pre Icts a tne Dlras would ao netter wltnout numans Decause tne maln reason why birds die is due to running into towers, cars, and windows.
A less positive view of the future is due to nuclear plants. The author predicts that if a natural isaster occurred near one of these plants, it would contaminate the land and the animals around it. Weisman also says that without humans, the coal underground would stay there until the end of earth’s time, therefore ending the continued emission of carbon dioxide. Weisman then goes on to discuss the animals. Most would be much better off without us, but some, like the head lice, follicle mites, and bacteria species, that have evolved with us, would have a hard time without our presence.
Weisman hypothesizes that bronze sculptures have already last so long, hey will indeed survive long after us. Also, noble metals such as gold and copper, along with noble gases, will survive forever. He also says that radio waves will never stop broadcasting. Weisman concludes the novel in saying that earth would take a very long time to completely return to its original state, before humans, but that it is indeed possible. This book relates to the class because it discusses how we as humans have impacted the planet. In class we learn about invasive species and how they affect the species around them.
We can describe humans as invasive species because we are ery adaptable and grow quickly. We harm other organisms when we take over their habitat. We are killing off other species and growing. We have not yet learned to live amongst other species, and can only live off of them. This book shows us how much damage we have done to those around us and how the damage can only be completely undone by us simply disappearing forever. Also, in class we learn about biological diversity and why it is important. This book shows us that life would flourish without us, maintaining this biodiversity.
We as humans are not helping the ause by killing off thousands of species and taking over their land and food. We are not helping by polluting the environment and making this planet harmful to breathe. We are not helping by contaminating the water with our fertilizer and factory runoff. The World Without Us shows us that there needs to be a change to save the planet and make it a place where everyone can live, not Just humans. The editor of The Mindful World writes an article based on a video similar to Weismans book called “Life After People”. The author shares similar ideas to
Weisman in that he believes “it would appear that Earth can manage quite well without us.. ” He goes on to say, “the impact of the lack of people will be noticed right away, as most power grids shut down around the planet… Elsewhere, critters and plants will have their run of Manhattan and every other previously “civilized” spot. Inventive photography shows bears clambering out of subway stations and vines pulling down brownstones, then skyscrapers. It may not be a surprise when the Eiffel Tower and Space Needle meet their eventual fates, but the scenes nonetheless rovide a pleasant sting of shock. Next, a writer of The Independent discusses what he believes the world would appear to be without the existence of humans. Like Weisman he says “On the day after humans disappear, nature takes over and immediately begins cleaning house – or houses, that is. Cleans them right off the face of the Earth. They all go. No matter how hermetically you’ve sealed your temperature-tuned interior from the weather, InvlslDle spores penetrate anyway, exp1001ng In suaaen outDursts 0T mould – a when you see it, worse when you don’t, because it’s hidden behind a painted wall, unching paper sandwiches of gypsum board, rotting studs and floor Joists.
Or you’ve been colonised by termites, carpenter ants, roaches, hornets, or even small mammals. ” Lastly, author of a post on the site Imaginative Worlds, writes about what she believes the fate of earth would be post-humans. She has the same ideas as Weisman about Manhattan and states “city subways and underground networks would start filling with water. In New York City, 700 pumps shift 49,000 cubic metres of water out of the tunnels everyday; in London, 30,000 cubic metres are pumped out. The tunnels would flood in no time. Work Cited “LIFE AFTER PEOPLE: What Happens If All the People on Earth Disappear . “The Mindful word. N. p. , 20 sept. 2012. web. 03 Dec. 2013. “Life after Man: A Vision of the Future. ” The Independent. Independent Digital News and Media, n. d. web. 03 Dec. 2013. “Thread: Life After People. ” Imaginative Worlds Paranormal Metaphysical Conspiracy Theory Forum Art Bells Dark Matter C2CAM Other Related Media DiscussionLive Chat Discussion Information Portal RSS. N. p. , n. d. Web. 03 Dec. 2013.