- Hardcover: 128 pages
- Publisher: Amereon Ltd (June 19, 1998)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 089190235X
- ISBN-13: 978-0891902355
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 55 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,826,208 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth
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About the Author
Buckminster Fuller was a Research Professor at Southern Illinois University beginning in 1959. In 1968 the Board of Trustees appointed him University Professor, the second faculty member so honored in the University's history.
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Fuller wants us to all think clearly, make good choices, be conscious and get the big picture. This book moves fast but delivers a punch. Even if you've read it before, read it again.
Spaceship Earth provides a justification, based on Fuller's unique and compelling narrative of the history of western civilization, to reject specialization as harmful to the survival of our species. He reveals the great deception of shortages (energy, jobs, money) as a boldfaced lie by the world's most powerful interests (the "great pirates") and backs his assertion with compelling evidence. By putting boundaries on our thinking, e.g. the common prefaces to verbal expression we often hear, like "I'm not a lawyer," or "I'm not an engineer," that unfairly diminish the value of people's mental capacity to make moral judgments, we facilitate the "divide and conquer" strategy of the great pirates.
Original thinkers do not always command attention. People tend to refer to them as "ahead of their time," or "impractical," or even "dishonest." Amazingly, Buckminster Fuller enjoyed the opposite during his lifetime. A master of many disciplines, he received no less than 41 honorary PhDs., yet described himself as a "non-conforming misfit" and was expelled from Harvard University, twice!
The introduction is written by Fuller's grandson, Jamie Snyder, who lived and worked with Fuller for 28 years. He admits that Bucky's writing style can be complex due to his tendency to invent words and spin dynamic phrases when nothing else could express his thoughts. Snyder's suggestion is to just read through sections that are not immediately clear to get a sense of meaning, then after consideration, reread them. I found this technique very effective towards gaining an understanding Fuller's system-dynamical thinking style where it became complex in the later chapters.
Spaceship Earth conveys a vital message for humanity. Do not leave solutions to those supposedly "in charge" (politicians). Fuller advocates empowering everyone, literally, in the activity of innovating ways to do more with less in order to save our planet from the insatiable drive to consume every single drop of oil, every fish in the sea, and every breath of fresh air, before it is too late.
This book is suitable for all audiences, yet I think that young people may be especially able to embrace its message and integrate Fuller's concepts into their educational plans and life styles. If Amazon had a six-star category, this is the one book I'd place in it.
Bucky starts out by giving us his version of the great man theory of human development. Then he moves into our present world. Showing us how it developed and the great opportunities we have before us at this very moment and the very real power we have developed to wipe out all life. Bucky, however, is optimistic of our future. He says that we have the power to transform the world right now. With a bit of engineering and the right frame of mind we can re-design our world as if were were living on a spaceship. Where we have to look after everything, from cleaning our water and our air. Look after the sea and life forms that accompany us. Even looking after each other. In this book Bucky lays presents us with a plan that will solve a lot of the world current big problems.
If ideas had weight then this thin book would be impossible to lift up