This season Sierra Club Chinook Group is proud to join Sustainable Calgary, the Arusha Centre, Pages Bookstore, Green Calgary, Thrive, REAP Calgary and EcoLiving Events in organizing the Sustainability Book Club!
The goal of the Sustainability Book Club is to share books and discussions that help us understand the world and our place in it in a different way. This can change the way we experience the world and the way we act in our day-to-day lives, opening new possibilities for environmental sustainability, social justice and peace.
Feel free to join us and drop in – even if you have not read the book. It is the issues and themes that spark the discussion. Everyone is welcome to join in for one session or all of them. It is your opinion on the issues that builds an interesting discussion.
The first book is The Energy of Slaves by Andrew Nikiforuk. The author will be in person releasing the book at the Memorial Park Library! The book has been released and is already available at Pages Bookstore.
The Energy of Slaves by Andrew Nikiforuk
Ancient civilizations relied on shackled human muscle. It took the energy of slaves to plant crops, clothe emperors, and build cities. Nineteenth-century slaveholders viewed critics as hostilely as oil companies and governments now regard environmentalists.
Yet the abolition movement had an invisible ally: coal and oil. As the world’s most versatile workers, fossil fuels replenished slavery’s ranks with combustion engines and other labor-saving tools. Since then, cheap oil has transformed politics, economics, science, agriculture, and even our concept of happiness. Many North Americans today live as extravagantly as Caribbean plantation owners. We feel entitled to surplus energy and rationalize inequality, even barbarity, to get it. But endless growth is an illusion.
What we need, Andrew Nikiforuk argues in this provocative new book, is a radical emancipation movement that ends our master-and-slave approach to energy. We must learn to use energy on a moral, just, and truly human scale.