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By the world-renowned seismologist, a surprising history of natural disasters, their impact on our culture, and new ways of thinking about the ones to come

Earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, volcanoes--these all stem from the same forces that give our planet life. It is only when they exceed our ability to withstand them that they become disasters. Viewed together, these events have shaped our cities and their architecture; elevated leaders and toppled governments; influenced the way we think, feel, fight, unite, and pray. The history of natural disasters is a history of ourselves.

In The Big Ones, renowned seismologist Dr. Lucy Jones offers a bracing look at some of our most devastating natural events, whose reverberations we continue to feel today. Spanning from the destruction of Pompeii in AD 79 to the hurricanes of 2017, it considers disaster's role in the formation of our religions; exposes the limits of human memory; and demonstrates the potential of globalization to humanize and heal.

With temperatures rising around the world, natural disasters are striking with greater frequency than ever before. More than just history or science, The Big Ones presents a call to action. Natural hazards are inevitable; human catastrophes are not. With this energizing and exhaustively researched book, Dr. Jones offers a look at our past, readying us to face down the Big Ones in our future.



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