The Earth Transformed

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A major history of how a changing climate has dramatically shaped the development—and demise—of civilisations across time, from the international bestselling author, Peter Frankopan

About the Author

Peter Frankopan is Professor of Global History at Oxford University and Senior Research Fellow at Worcester College, Oxford. The Silk Roads: A New History of the World, published by Bloomsbury in 2015, was a No. 1 Sunday Times bestseller and remained in the top 10 for nine months after publication. It was named one of the ‘Books of the Decade’ 2010–2020 by the Sunday Times. The New Silk Roads: The Present and Future of the World was published by Bloomsbury in 2018 and won the Human Sciences prize of the Carical Foundation in 2019.


Frankopan shows you how everything fits together . . . vast, learned and timely . . . The Earth Transformed is Sapiens for grown-ups . . . it holds lessons for a world grappling with rapid climate change caused by human industry
*Sunday Times*

Frankopan has brought all this scholarly work together into a massive book that is comprehensive, well-informed and fascinating. It has the intellectual weight and dramatic force of a tsunami . . . This is an endlessly fascinating book, an easy read on an important issue
*The Times*

Frankopan demonstrates an impressive mastery of anthropological, historical, and meteorological literature, and his scrupulously evenhanded analysis carefully notes uncertainties in scientific and historical evidence. Elegant and cogently argued, this illuminates an age-old and urgently important dynamic
*Publishers Weekly*

[Frankopan] succeeds in mastering a seemingly impossible challenge, distilling an immense mass of historical sources, scientific data and modern scholarship that span thousands of years and the entire globe into an epic and spellbinding story. Humanity has transformed the Earth: Frankopan transforms our understanding of history
*Financial Times*

This is epic, gripping, original history that leaps off the page. I wanted to buy everyone I know a copy
*Sathnam Sanghera*

All Historians aiming to tell a narrative face the problem of when exactly to start it. Only Peter Frankopan would go back 2.5 billion years to the Great Oxidation Event
*Tom Holland*

Vast, learned and timely work
*Sunday Times*

A dazzling compendium of global research . . . The value of this book is as an act of deep understanding, recognising not only scientifically but culturally and philosophically that we are epiphenomena – not dominators of the Earth but products of it

The Earth Transformed is an epic masterpiece. There are many 'big ideas' books out there, but often are beset by wafer-thin scholarship, and few stand up to scrutiny. This absolutely does. It's a book for the ages, and I cannot recommend it enough
*Adam Rutherford*

[Frankopan] has attempted successfully, and deftly, what few others have and provided an overarching perspective of the way climatic events and trends, geography and human opportunism have intertwined and defined Homo sapiens’ relationship with the planet

The Earth Transformed makes a major contribution to raising awareness and concern, and hopefully will reach those decision makers, in the political and commercial spheres, who might have the power and means to do something about it. In many ways, this fascinating and thoughtful book’s lack of an overt political message—and its clear focus on the lessons we can learn from past civilisations and their response to climate change—make it all the more powerful a weapon, for which Prof Frankopan deserves credit and thanks
*Country Life*

Importantly, Frankopan shows our modern concerns about the environment are no modish fad: they were shared by ancient thinkers and leaders. Anyone with an interest in building a more sustainable world would do well to read his book
*New Scientist*

Peter Frankopan reveals how our lives have been shaped by environmental changes since the emergence of Homo sapiens in this sweeping, riveting study

Extraordinary . . . a work of vast scholarship. This is the first wide-ranging account of humanity's relationship with the natural world — both climate and environment . . . If this book does not make us think, then nothing will. The Earth Transformed could hardly be more timely
*Daily Mail*

Frankopan has done the sterling, even heroic job of making readily available much of the bountiful harvest of research in climate and environmental history. For thousands of aficionados of door-stopper history books, this one is likely to be their introduction to climate and environmental history

A wise, well-researched and essential study for our precarious times

A vital, epic history of climate change . . . Marries a serious, timely subject – the story of humanity from the perspective of climate change, both natural and man-made – with thumpingly readable prose. Frankopan may be an Oxford professor, but this is an exercise in scholarship worn gossamer-lightly. The Earth Transformed is a testament to the awesome value of in-depth research. Frankopan’s skill is to create a new genre: the ecological epic history
*Daily Telegraph*

Peter’s book is an incredible, must read, magnum opus on the history of humanity and the environment, and I THOROUGHLY suggest you read it
*Greg Jenner*

Raises fresh and urgent questions . . . in characteristically pacey style . . . Above all, his work will encourage readers to think differently about the past

Unputdownable. Seriously good and mind altering
*Emily Maitlis*

The Earth Transformed aims for nothing less than the history of the world . . . A rewarding book

Frankopan’s discussion flows effortlessly, buoyed by novel connections . . . The scale of Frankopan’s ambition is admirable . . . There’s nothing so infectious as the curiosity and wonder of a talented author delighting in the details of his research . . . Must read . . . I remained engrossed until the end
*Perspective Magazine*

Epic . . . profound analysis; an amazing insight into how climate influenced history . . . This is a book every academician and policymaker must read. It is a book that students interested in climate change will find enthralling

An immense work of scholarship . . . I know of no volume that tells the story with the breadth and depth of Frankopan’s The Earth Transformed. The book’s scope is extraordinary

A remarkable piece of work
*New Indian Express*

On almost every page in The Earth Transformed Frankopan summons and weighs vast scientific literatures . . . Here we see the historian as an expert reader of scientific archives – databases, genetics, climate records
*Sydney Morning Herald*

This is a history book with a purpose, for the age of climate emergency and nature crisis . . . A great work
*Politics Home*

Like a vast, twisted but very fascinating gothic novel . . . One of the many things I admired about this work was the easy, confident way in which Peter Frankopan encompasses every region of the Earth
*History Today*

Sweeping in ambition and scale, Peter Frankopan’s The Earth Transformed tackles the history of climate change and how it has shaped human history over a 5,000-year period. Lest this sound too forbidding, be assured that the book is brilliantly shaped throughout by the human touch
*BBC History Magazine, 2023 Books of the Year*

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