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Published May 2012 | Published
Journal Article Open

Eruptions That Shook the World [Book Review]


Geological and biological evolution and epic myth are punctuated by such catastrophic events as massive volcanic eruptions that shake Earth, change the climate, cover a continent with ash, and reset evolution. The term super volcano, popularized by the Discovery Channel, does not begin to describe the phenomenon, which leaves some evidence in geological, archaeological, and DNA records, but blows most of it away. Civilization, certainly, and humankind, probably, will not survive the next one. Clive Oppenheimer's Eruptions That Shook the World makes the case that we should understand these events. It also inadvertently makes the case that contemporary theories about the ultimate causes of world-class eruptions are as myth-driven as those involving Hades and Poseidon.

Additional Information

© 2012 American Institute of Physics. Book review of: Eruptions That Shook the World, Clive Oppenheimer, Cambridge U. Press, New York, Year: 2011. (408 pp.). ISBN 978-0-521-64112-8.

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