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The World Without Us Themes

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Words 977
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Kali Kinziger, Prottengeier, 12/8/15, 311

Carrying many themes, environmental literature builds off of cause and effect to create a solution. Alan Weisman, in “The World Without Us” presents his research chronologically to demonstrate visions of slow violence. In subtle ideas, it is made clear that the plastics created by humans are indeed the problem and that plastic is now a widespread, common household tool. Excerpts from the book, “The World Without Us,” convey messages of slow violence as a result of anthropocentric actions due to imperialism and globalization.
I have chosen several themes that illustrate how Weisman is able to provoke thought among his readers in order to have the desired effect of causing awareness of what humans
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Ever since the first plastics were made; around World War II, their use has consumed the global planet. Weisman informs us that plastic was being mass produced and consumed in the 1960’s, only increasing production from then on (Weisman 144). Evidence has shown that plastic doesn't biodegrade as well as its other landfill partners, and in fact, it floats (Weisman 144). Even when reducing the plastic to smaller fragments it shows no sign of dissolving (Weisman 145). This kind of problem festers a harmful habitat for wildlife, land and sea animals. Because of this, certain organisms will not be receiving the nutrients necessary for survival. In many cases, animals have died on behalf of ingesting indigestible plastic (Weisman 145). It appears there was no evidence conducted on the degradability of modern plastics and their detrimental effects to the environment. After thousands of years, it is assumed that plastic will still be filling landfills. The continuous addition to the plastic epidemic is creating negative balances to the life sustainability in our ecosystem. This specific part of the chapter is providing foundations to the potential effects of non-biodegradable plastic. Even in a dystopian paradox where humans ceased to exist, the culminations of plastic have long left their mark. Starting with the state of the environment as it is, Weisman chooses to stick to the affair prevailing. In relation to the ideas discussed in class, the theme of slow violence is apposite. Undoubtedly, plastic has left its “carbon footprint” since its creation, but the consequences have not been revealed until just recently. The globalization of use and misuse of plastics created an unassailable war with the earth. The violence occurring is human caused and

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