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The liquid of life

Jun 21, 2011

Every human society has been shaped by its relationship to water and in his new book Elixir anthropologist Brian Fagan traces the history of our involvement with this vital resource. Fagan goes back to the most remote period of human existence chronicling our struggle to tame a resource so mysterious and unpredictable. He sweeps through time to the Industrial Revolution when water was no longer a mystery but something to be exploited and channeled for use by huge segments of the population. Currently, with the earth’s population approaching 9 billion, water scarcity is a reality and we return, in part, to a time when water was revered and considered highly precious. In Elixir, Brian Fagan explores the human connection to this vital liquid that we take for granted but that we are so dependent on to survive. Are we headed for a crisis in the worldwide availability of water? What is the future of the human relationship with water and are we going to come to terms with our need to conserve it?

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