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The Great Derangement: Climate Change and the Unthinkable-Released July 2016
Author: Amitav Ghosh

Publisher: Penguin Books
ISBN: 978-0670089130
Pages: 284
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Are we deranged? One of India’s greatest writers, Amitav Ghosh, argues that future generations may well think so. How else can we explain our imaginative failure in the face of global warming? In this groundbreaking return to non-fiction, Ghosh examines our inability at the level of literature, history and politics to grasp the scale and violence of climate change.
The extreme nature of today’s climate events makes them peculiarly resistant to the contemporary imagination. In fiction, hundred-year storms and freakish tornadoes simply feel too improbable for the novel and are automatically consigned to other genres. In the writing of history, too, the climate crisis has sometimes led to gross simplifications. Ghosh suggests that politics, much like literature, has become a matter of personal moral reckoning rather than an arena of collective action. But to limit culture and politics to individual moral adventure comes at a great cost. The climate crisis asks us to imagine other forms of human existence a task to which fiction, Ghosh argues, is the best suited of all forms. The Great Derangement serves as a brilliant writer’s summons to confront the most urgent task of our time.

For decades Amitav Ghosh has been telling us exquisite stories of unlikely human connection across geographical and historical boundaries. In The Great Derangement he goes a step further and sets us amidst the great collectivity of a living and dying planet. This intensely lyrical work from a visionary writer at his best calls for a restitution of the sacred- in its most inclusive form - so that we can face the climate crisis of our times with our finest remaining resources.” Leela Gandhi, Brown University

“Amitav Ghosh has written brilliant fiction, impactful essays. But this work on climate change is the most transformational and powerful piece of writing to come from his pen. The Great Derangement is a book on our burning planet for those who are burning it and are being burnt with it. Ghosh gives us, in scalding anguish, a masterpiece that reflects the Buddha's Adittapariyaya Sutta or 'The Fire Sermon' which T S Eliot so plangently re-affirmed in The Waste Land. We have here a book that seeks to chastise, challenge and change our brain's clogged circuitry.” Gopal Gandhi

"Climate change is one of the most important factors that has shaped human history. Much has been written about the science of climate change, but in his new book The Great Derangement, one of India's best known storytellers explores an interesting new question - the inability of the modern literary imagination to grasp the sheer scale of change that may await us." Sanjeev Sanyal