The Nutmeg's Curse by Amitav Ghosh audiobook

The Nutmeg's Curse: Parables for a Planet in Crisis

By Amitav Ghosh
Read by Sam Dastor

Blackstone Publishing 9780226815459
10.21 Hours 1
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In this ambitious successor to The Great Derangement, acclaimed writer Amitav Ghosh finds the origins of our contemporary climate crisis in Western colonialism’s violent exploitation of human life and the natural environment. A powerful work of history, essay, testimony, and polemic, Amitav Ghosh’s new book traces our contemporary planetary crisis back to the discovery of the New World and the sea route to the Indian Ocean. The Nutmeg’s Curse argues that the dynamics of climate change today are rooted in a centuries-old geopolitical order constructed by Western colonialism. At the center of Ghosh’s narrative is the now-ubiquitous spice nutmeg. The history of the nutmeg is one of conquest and exploitation—of both human life and the natural environment. In Ghosh’s hands, the story of the nutmeg becomes a parable for our environmental crisis, revealing the ways human history has always been entangled with earthly materials such as spices, tea, sugarcane, opium, and fossil fuels. Our crisis, he shows, is ultimately the result of a mechanistic view of the earth, where nature exists only as a resource for humans to use for our own ends, rather than a force of its own, full of agency and meaning. Writing against the backdrop of the global pandemic and the Black Lives Matter protests, Ghosh frames these historical stories in a way that connects our shared colonial histories with the deep inequality we see around us today. By interweaving discussions on everything from the global history of the oil trade to the migrant crisis and the animist spirituality of Indigenous communities around the world, The Nutmeg’s Curse offers a sharp critique of Western society and speaks to the profoundly remarkable ways in which human history is shaped by non-human forces.

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Summary

Summary

In this ambitious successor to The Great Derangement, acclaimed writer Amitav Ghosh finds the origins of our contemporary climate crisis in Western colonialism’s violent exploitation of human life and the natural environment.

A powerful work of history, essay, testimony, and polemic, Amitav Ghosh’s new book traces our contemporary planetary crisis back to the discovery of the New World and the sea route to the Indian Ocean. The Nutmeg’s Curse argues that the dynamics of climate change today are rooted in a centuries-old geopolitical order constructed by Western colonialism. At the center of Ghosh’s narrative is the now-ubiquitous spice nutmeg. The history of the nutmeg is one of conquest and exploitation—of both human life and the natural environment. In Ghosh’s hands, the story of the nutmeg becomes a parable for our environmental crisis, revealing the ways human history has always been entangled with earthly materials such as spices, tea, sugarcane, opium, and fossil fuels. Our crisis, he shows, is ultimately the result of a mechanistic view of the earth, where nature exists only as a resource for humans to use for our own ends, rather than a force of its own, full of agency and meaning.

Writing against the backdrop of the global pandemic and the Black Lives Matter protests, Ghosh frames these historical stories in a way that connects our shared colonial histories with the deep inequality we see around us today. By interweaving discussions on everything from the global history of the oil trade to the migrant crisis and the animist spirituality of Indigenous communities around the world, The Nutmeg’s Curse offers a sharp critique of Western society and speaks to the profoundly remarkable ways in which human history is shaped by non-human forces.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“With literary precision, [Ghosh] delves into the history and culture of conquest, drawing a direct line from actions committed hundreds of years ago to the planet’s current predicament. A singular achievement and a title of its time, The Nutmeg’s Curse reminds us why the land is crying.” Booklist
“Illuminating…[Ghosh] wants us to reckon with broader structures of power, involving ‘the physical subjugation of people and territory,’ and, crucially, the ‘idea of conquest, as a process of extraction.’ The world-as-resource perspective not only depletes our environment of the raw materials we seek; it ultimately depletes it of meaning.” New Yorker
“The effect of Ghosh’s archival research, far-flung travel reporting, deep thinking, and eloquent writing is at once enlightening and depressing. There are plenty of debates to be had with some of his analyses and conclusions, but I bet you will come away thinking he’s more right than he is wrong, and you will understand the climate catastrophe in a new way.” Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
“Diagnosing our intricately inter-linked political, economic, and environmental crises, The Nutmeg’s Curse is a book like no other in its combination of moral passion, intellectual rigor, and literary elegance. And from its effortless synthesis of contemporary scholarship and indigenous knowledge systems emerges an irrefutable argument—that we must rethink our fundamental assumptions about human history.” Pankaj Mishra, author of Age of Anger

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Amitav Ghosh

Author Bio: Amitav Ghosh

Amitav Ghosh is the multiaward–winning author of books of fiction and nonfiction. He has won France’s Prix Medici Etranger, India’s prestigious Sahitya Akademi Award, the Arthur C. Clarke Award, and the Pushcart Prize, among others.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, Digital Rental, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction/Nature
Runtime: 10.21
Audience: Adult
Language: English