Solar Cataclysm : How the Sun Shaped the Past and What We Can Do to Save Our Future
The connection between solar activity and human history has been largely untold. With an engaging voice and never before seen research, bestselling author Lawrence Joseph offers evidence that changes in the sun's behavior not only provoke shifts in the climate, but also disrupt our personal lives, determine the course of history, and shape our destiny. More importantly, the sun continues to communicate with us and change our daily lives, and in 2012 scientists predict one of the greatest solar activity years in history, which could have a huge impact on our world.Connecting current research in solar physics to biology, politics, and culture, this book will force us to rethink our understanding of human history. According to Joseph, spikes in solar output have been correlated with drops in the stock market, and the Vikings would not have discovered North America if fluctuations in solar activity hadn't melted the formerly ice-choked North Atlantic. The sun does more than influence our climate and help plants grow.
Futurist and science writer Joseph (Apocalypse 2012) describes the fascinating and subtle science underlying his "Moody Sun Hypothesis," asserting that variations in the Sun's radiation output have influenced history, climate, birthrates, migration trends, even the stock market (sunspot and solar flare activity cause disturbances in the electromagnetic field that can affect the brain and one's judgment). Although ancient Babylonians recorded observations of sunspots around 1000 B.C.E., Aristotle's ideas of "heavenly perfection" led the Church to deny the existence of sunspots until early telescopes proved otherwise. Measurements show that decreases in solar activity coincide with declines in Earth's temperatures. Joseph discusses evidence for what scientists call the Medieval Warm Period (900-1200 C.E.) and the subsequent "Little Ice Age" (1300-1750), when long winters and damp, chilly summers brought crop failures, famine, and political collapse. After a strong argument that global warming, though largely the result of human activity, is partly due to the Sun's variability, Joseph looks at biological effects, such as skin cancer and the value of phototherapy (the use of light to treat skin diseases and mental disorders). Joseph's argument is provocative food for thought for science readers. Agent: Andrew Stuart, the Stuart Agency. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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September 25, 2012
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