Imagine that you are a castaway on a dead planet. You only have provisions for a few days and you are absolutely alone. How would you survive? Andy Weir turned this question into his best-selling novel, The Martian. It is a tale of man versus Mars.
Looking for some good reads about the environment and the Middle East? Then click yourself into the University of California Press (UCP) e-books collection (link here) offering free access to hundreds of books published by UCP and other academic presses.
Want to get close to Iraqi food traditions and culture? This cook book is for you. Lyrical memoirs of Nawal Nasrallah’s childhood in Iraq, and the place that food had in that culture, drift through the pages, pausing for sidebars that offer tidbits like four paragraphs on ancient wives in ancient kitchens. Or samples from a […]
Here are some green book gift giving ideas for Christmas: Whether you are buying for a business executive who needs to make the company more sustainable (hint, hint), a young environmental activist who wants to change the world, or an MBA student eager to be in the loop, here are some important book ideas.
In the Middle East, date palms are a natural element of the landscape. The towering trees adorn streets and march down road medians. They sprout out of private gardens and public parks. Come late summer, their gracefully swaying green heads send forth sturdy branches laden with heavy fruit clusters.
The “Field Guide to Jordan” is a fantastically comprehensive book that uses beautiful photographs and concise descriptions to introduce locals and visitors to the kingdom’s natural wonders. The guide is the end-product of four years of dedicated research and photography by author Jarir Maani and his band of contributors (composed mainly of friends and family).
Climate change is one of the most urgent issues of our time, yet most countries in the Middle East and North Africa continue to subsidize energy derived from fossil fuels. Seeking solutions, The Guardian launched a three part Global Public Leaders Series and sent us this recent lecture by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
We’ve posted about the Cafe Clock blog here, including the recipe for its famous camel burger. In this delightful cookbook, Stevens includes recipes from the Cafe Clock as well as some traditional Moroccan dishes that she discovered herself. Her warm, frank tone and the stories that introduce many of the recipes almost bring the reader […]
Working in Qatar has clearly given the academic Mari Luomi access to lots of information about the climate change rhetoric and reality of the Gulf. It also puts her in a rather awkward position in terms of being able to voice her criticism. After interviewing Luomi for Green Prophet around a year ago, however, I […]
A great collection of short stories inspired by the ecological crisis which are honest, creative and sometimes really funny I don’t know if it’s just me but whenever someone recommends a book that is for charity or even a song that is ‘worthy’ – alarm bells go off. Alarms that tell me to stay away […]
In the book “Racing Alone”, Nader Khalili pursues his own revolution using fire, earth, air and water. In “Racing Alone”, the late Iranian earth architect Nader Khalili who died in 2008 recounts the years leading to the realization of his dream; building a dwelling that infuses Persian culture, history, art, and ingeniousness, and a structure […]
Odeh Al-Jayoussi creates a great guidebook on Islam and sustainable development, although it’s a little overambitious in its reach at times Odeh Al-Jayoussi, the current vice president of Jordan’s Royal Scientific Society, has certainly had an interesting career. As well as working for the International Union for Conservation of Nature, he’s spent time at the City […]
Pink slime, an Egyptian muscleman with freakish biceps, and horse-burgers: what makes news go viral? Ages back, the day after actress Natalie Wood died, I got two phone calls from my brothers – each on an opposite American coast – with the same awful joke*. How could something so bad get near-instant attention of people […]
If you’re looking for some light reading from the Middle East, something peppered with the region’s wit and satire, then look no farther than Abu Dhabi and Sultan Saeed al Darmaki, presently a businessman running the construction-based Al Darmaki group. He has published his first official book, entitled Leave the Birds Alone. It was a […]
Eating sustainably can make a huge impact on our planet. We all know that eating sustainably, and eating local is good for the planet and good for the economy. Now that your New Year’s resolutions to eat better have come into effect, check out your local bookseller for seven recycled titles that will help bolster […]
Jewish American writer and illustrator Maurice Sendak died last week, at age 83. The acclaimed master of kid-lit once said, “I don’t write for children. I write. And someone says, ‘That’s for children.'” Best known for his 1963 book Where the Wild Things Are, Sendak spoke through guileless prose and vivid imagery. Simple messages beautifully imagined: […]
Framing climate-influenced migration as a threat is dangerous and counterproductive is author Gregory White Around the time of the Copenhagen Summit in 2009, there was a sense that climate change was finally transitioning from something which only concerned hippy do-gooders to an issue that affected the entire international community. Everywhere you looked people were talking […]
There are more Christians in Egypt than Jews in Israel. And few westerners might realize that there are Christian Arabs living in the Holy Land of Israel – some since the early beginnings of Christianity. There are Christians in Lebanon, in Syria, and until most of them were chased out, they were in Iraq too. […]
“Nature has provided ecosystems and their benefits to us for free… perhaps because this capital has been provided freely to us, we humans have tended to view it as limitless, abundant, and thus perhaps always available for our use, exploitation, and conversion.” (p.3) The modern economy’s obsession with competitive consumption and endless exploitation of natural […]
Pauline Masurel reviews a collection of literary and science fiction stories by world renowned authors that imagine the affects of climate change. Bill McKibben was arrested in August this year while protesting against TransCanada’s proposed plans to build a pipeline that would carry oil from the Alberta tar sands to Texas. McKibben has written: “This […]
Edgelands are the spaces outside of towns and cities that play host to a rough element. Largely considered no-man’s-land, they too deserve attention, Marion Shoard argues. Two poets respond to the call. The term edgelands was coined in 2003 by Marion Shoard. She wrote, “The expanses of no-man’s-land which have sprung up on the margins of […]
Stephen Gardiner argues that climate change is a combination of the ‘prisoners dilemma’ and ‘tragedy of the commons.’ Stephen M. Gardiner regards climate change more or less as an ethical failure on the part of the human race, something that implicates our institutions’ moral and political theories alongside ourselves as supposedly moral beings. He employs […]
Ken Finn is a passionate man. Sitting with him in his Brighton kitchen (which he built himself), our conversation ranges from his book, ‘My Journey With a Remarkable Tree’, to the current state of the economy: “We’ve got to decouple the juggernaut [of economic meltdown] that is hurtling towards us” is a memorable quote from […]
Locavore life on an almost invisible budget. Robin Mather has over 30 year’s experience working as a journalist with a passion for the truth behind food production. And she lets nothing get in her way. The head of Michigan’s largest dairy co-op once told her, “Young lady, if you write about rBST (a GMO hormone […]
How do you measure human well-being? How do you fully account for the impact of human interventions in poor regions like in Iraq? What costs are paid by the citizens of one country for the consumer demands of another? Renown economist Partha Dasgupta’s recent book, ‘Human Well-being and the Natural Environment’ is not for the […]