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Mike Hulme’s wise and well-crafted book encircles the idea of climate from a series of perspectives, showing its elusive nature from a welter of examples. As the argument develops, we see how climate is embedded in multiple cultures, histories, and knowledges about nature. We are shown how our views of climate depend on personal experiences, scientific models, inherited tropes, and political interest. Each chapter reflects a turn of the kaleidoscope, gradually making the reader see both the complexity and the singularity of each image.
Everybody may be talking about the weather, but how do we experience climate? While climate has mostly been left to the natural sciences, Mike Hulme’s book shows how climate is much more than the „average weather“. It is a cultural relationship between humans and the weathers they dwell in. How do cultures live with the weather? How does the experience of climate structure our sense of space and time?
In his bracing new book, Mike Hulme throws open cultural windows on climate, illuminating its history and geography as a powerful form of human experience and imagination. Through a series of frameworks, concerning knowledge, narrative, livelihood and policy, and a rich range of examples, from scientific modelling to impressionist painting, statistical mapping to song and dance, Hulme guides his readers, clearly and accessibly, through the cultural worlds of climate.
We desperately need a book like this one, a book that reorients our thinking about climate change from temperature and precipitation to culture, values, emotions, and social justice. Mike Hulme has delivered beautifully in this highly accessible, boldly insightful, and elegant book. Weathered divulges quite clearly the complex ways we think about weather and climate. And it also shows us that when we define or explain, study or represent, fear or blame, engineer or predict the climate, we are ultimately empowering some people while disempowering others.
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