The Long Emergency Analysis

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James Howard Kunstler’s The Long Emergency is the stuff of suburban nightmare. As someone who has lived her entire life in the comforts and trappings of suburbia, the events that have been laid out in this text have raised several levels of alarm inside myself. Many suburbanites schlep their reusable bags into their hybrid or flex-fuel vehicles and regularly run their several mile journey to the grocery store multiple times a week. In the absence of fossil fuels, not only would this trip for one’s chief resource for continued survival be impossible from every angle, but additionally the idea of having electricity, heat, water, and all of the other basic “necessities” would fall completely flat. While I considered myself someone who was …show more content…
The main takeaway I gleaned from this text is that it’s not about finding a way to maintain the American standard of living to what it is today, it is that Americans need to adapt to simpler lifestyles in order to meet as many of their own needs as possible. I have thought about this idea often even before reading The Long Emergency, and I admittedly have mixed feelings about the proposal Kunstler made as the solution. Perhaps I’ve subscribed to the idea of individualism for too long. The author suggests that “American life in the twenty-first century has the best chance of adjusting to the Long Emergency in a physical pattern of small towns surrounded by productive farmland” (Kunstler, 250). He then goes on to describe how our continued survival basically hinges on the cooperation of all people involved. While I think that is an …show more content…
We can debate with ourselves ad nauseam about whether or not our daily activities are destroying the planet, but the truth is that I would lament for days about things like our economic structure or the excessive use of oil while I benefit daily from both of those things. The Long Emergency has definitely lit a fire within me to take a good look at how I operate on a day to day basis and to think about what changes I can make in my everyday life to make a transition into the Long Emergency more smoothly if the brunt of it were to happen in my lifetime. Overall, this text caused me to take a step back and assess all of the bounty that we have in this very moment, because it seems completely certain that it won’t be like this for much

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