Credit: Hartman, Steven, Peter Norrman and Mahesh Rangarajan. Is decline an inevitable result of socio-ecological crisis? Originally published in bifrostonline.org, 30 November 2017 (CC BY-SA 2.0)
Is decline an inevitable result of socio-ecological crisis?
Through the ages societies have faced major crises. Historian Mahesh Rangarajan reminds us that, historically speaking, environmental and economic crises have resulted not only in societal decline or collapse, but in reform as well as social and political reorganization. Adopting broader historical perspectives of long-term change, he argues, can be one way to avoid the traps of paralyzing despair or naïve optimism in times of socio-ecological crisis.