According to Jared Diamond, what are the forces that allow some societies to survive, and others to fail?

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In his book Collapse Diamond argues that inability to adapt to environmental changes, the inability to adapt to the loss of trading partners, and the strains put on the environment due to overpopulation are factors that lead societies to collapse. His underlying message is that failure to adapt to...

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In his book CollapseDiamond argues that inability to adapt to environmental changes, the inability to adapt to the loss of trading partners, and the strains put on the environment due to overpopulation are factors that lead societies to collapse. His underlying message is that failure to adapt to change, especially environmental change, can be lethal. One example he uses is the fate of the Norse, who successfully settled for some centuries in Greenland and succeeded for a time as farmers. When climate problems arose and ships that brought supplies from the homeland stopped coming, these European settlers couldn't adapt. The irony is that they had examples all around them in the form of indigenous Native peoples who had adapted to Greenland through, for example, fishing in kayaks to obtain the food they needed in the harsh winter months. The Norse could have followed suit, but simply refused to change their way of living. Instead, they gradually disappeared. Diamond warns the same could happen to us if we don't start taking population and climate concerns more seriously. Societies that survive are those like the indigenous people in Greenland who lived in harmony with their environment.

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