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The Climate Pod

Oct 20, 2021

How did our ancestors handle catastrophic changes to their climate? Brian Fagan has been researching that very question for decades. As one of the world’s leading archaeological writers and recognized authorities on world prehistory, he has put together several great works on ancient climate change including the New York Times bestseller The Great Warming. Now, he's co-authored a new book Climate Chaos: Lessons on Survival from Our Ancestors with Cambridge University-trained archaeologist and writer Nadia Durrani. In this conversation with Fagan, we explore how ancient civilizations - from the Roman Emperors to Egyptian Pharaohs and many more - dealt with extreme environmental shifts and why climate change caused so many civilizations to eventually collapse. We explore the droughts, volcanoes, glacial melts, and other climate calamities that felled once-mighty civilizations and what we can learn from their example to lead us in our decisions today.

Brian Fagan is a Distinguished Emeritus Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

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