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Walking Away from Empire: A Personal Journey Paperback – Sep 9 2011

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 230 pages
  • Publisher: America Star Books (Sept. 9 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1462638872
  • ISBN-13: 978-1462638871
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.3 x 22.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 340 g
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #489,241 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa506f864) out of 5 stars 14 reviews
19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4183a38) out of 5 stars A Brave, Powerful Read Nov. 5 2012
By Kitsapcamper - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
In "Walking Away from Empire: A Personal Journey", Guy presents the choices he made to live counter to the culture our generation believed as the 'right way' to both live and behave. We seem to be facing a binary choice - to live "on" or "off" the grid and as it's becoming clearer (with events such as Superstorm Sandy), this choice will be made for us if we don't make it ourselves.

While the news media is fixated on middle class America, the creation of jobs and "renewed economic growth", more people are waking up to the fact that we are but one of many species and that we have stolen more than our fair share from the planet (and even future generations of our species). Guy figured this out earlier than most and was branded as crazy and not realistic. A lonely existence ensues as he makes the choice to not only 'opt out' but to encourage others to see the fallacy of the way our human systems are run and are irreparably broken. It's a Personal Journey simply because he feels quite alone in this thinking. I call it brave.

Brutally honest, this book presents the reader with questions that will be deeply personal. How do we, as a species, survive? How did we get here? Who is to blame (and ultimately, does it matter)?? This isn't supposed to be a 'fun' read - like The Dog Stars is to fiction, Guy's story should make you feel a bit unsettled because it's real.

Bravery applauded.
15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4183c84) out of 5 stars Walking Away from Empire Sept. 6 2012
By Robin L. Westenra - Published on
Format: Paperback
I thoroughly recommend this book because it is extremely rare to encounter such self-deprecating honesty these days.

Guy McPherson shows that the future of life on the planet is threatened by global warming, population over-shoot - in short you can' have infinite growth on a finite planet.

The only hope in this is the rapid and complete collapse of industrial civilisation and return by those who survive the transition to tribalism.

If we are able to continue as before most life on earth could disappear within one generation.

"Optimism is the absense of realism"
13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4183ec4) out of 5 stars Walking Away from Empire Sept. 6 2012
By Jean M. McMahon - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I would have to rate the book as high as possible because such stark honesty is difficult to come by..The scientific info is out there to tell us how we are killing life on the planet.The book lets us know the reasons such massive denial is going on.You read it and have that feeling of knowing the Corporate media is lying to us all the time.Great to see humans can think and change as Dr McPherson has done..Readable book for all..
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4297084) out of 5 stars Very passionately written book June 1 2013
By Ramon C. Sevilla - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I like the general argument of the book because it echoes my own disillusionment of the greatest empire. The only slight weakness of the book is that some areas could have come out much clearer and cogent after careful editing. Otherwise, it is a heartfelt confessional and critique of the environmental dead end we are and have created for ourselves in our search for a particular kind of "modernity" that is anchored in industrialization without respecting the limits to growth.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4183f3c) out of 5 stars Heartbreaking Honesty Nov. 10 2013
By P. Schneider - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Walking Away From Empire is a moving collection of essays telling the why and the how conservation scientist and professor Emeritus of University of Arizona, Dr Guy McPherson decided to leave behind a comfortable life of status, prestige and ease for a life of hardship in the desert. Living off the grid and for the most part sustainably, means hard work, early mornings, and aching joints.

As a young man he fought forest fires in Idaho, which led to his love of forestry, nature and wilderness. His writing is funny at times, tragically moving at others. He does not insult the reader's intelligence, so if you're not well read you may find yourself hanging on by a thread to grasp the many allusions and references. Not to worry, this is great stuff easily understood by everyone.
I especially love the humorous story of the Nun and the knife that took place when he was a young fire fighter, around the age of 19.

Here's a comment from a reader of the book that I just saw on Facebook that I feel does it immense justice:
"And so... I finished Guy McPherson's book Walking Away from Empire. I'd like to reflect on it a bit before I write much... but it was a good read, some great pithy quotes. But I got it at noonish yesterday and finished it about two hours ago. It's a lot of angst and information distilled to about 151 proof... and when your done you see why perhaps your friends suggested mixing it with juice.
He explains his hiatus from academic life and his decision to eventually abandon it. I can see why people might be uncomfortable with Guy McPherson, he asks the questions people hesitate to ask, and sometimes states the answers, that no one feels comfortable admitting.
No, the future will not be "business as usual". We can't afford it to be. "

The professor now travels the country giving talks for free, teaching people about climate change, and the very real potential of Near Term Human Extinction this century due to habitat loss. If there is no habitat, there is no food. It's that simple.

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