by Paul Hawkin
published by Viking
© 2007 by Paul Hawkin
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The profusion of good causes and the nonprofit groups that advance them
can seem laughably overwhelming, but without altruistic grass-roots
efforts, the world would be a far less merciful place. Environmentalist
Hawken believes that we are in the midst of a world-changing rise of
activist groups, all "working toward ecological sustainability
and social justice." Rather than an ideological or centralized
movement, this coalescence is a spontaneous and organic response to
the recognition that environmental problems are social-justice problems.
Writing with zest, clarity, and a touch of wonder, Hawken compares this
gathering of forces to the human immune system. Just as antibodies rally
when the body is under threat, people are joining together to defend
life on Earth. Hawken offers a fascinating history of our perception
of nature and human rights and assesses the role indigenous cultures
are playing in the quest for ecological responsibility and economic
fairness. Hawken also presents an unprecedented map to this new "social
landscape" that includes a classification system defining astonishingly
diverse concerns, ranging from farming to child welfare, ocean preservation,
and beyond. Fresh and informative, Hawken's inspired overview charts
much that is right in the world. --- Donna Seaman
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