Themes and implicationsWhat are the main themes of Collapse and what does Jared Diamond suggest are the overall implications of those themes for world history?

3 Answers

litteacher8's profile pic

litteacher8 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think the main theme is that there are consequences to our actions as a society. If we do not pay attention to issues of environment and the development of our society, we are likely to cause our own destruction. Sometimes ignorance is not bliss.
accessteacher's profile pic

accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Definitely the central implication for us today is to pay attention to what we are doing to the environment and to respond accordingly, making sure that we learn from history rather than dwell ignorance and repeat the mistakes of past civilisations that have collapsed through the environment.

pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I would say that the main theme of this book is that damage to the environment can help cause socities to collapse but that such damage cannot be the only cause.  Diamond argues that environmental damage is often present in socities that collapse.  However, what is more important is how they respond to the environmental crises that arise.  The implication for this is that we need to respond to our current ecological problems in constructive ways.  We cannot be like the Norse on Greenland who keep trying to live in unsustainable ways.