68 pages 2 hours read

Ed. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson, Ed. Katharine K. Wilkinson

All We Can Save: Truth, Courage, and Solutions for the Climate Crisis

Nonfiction | Anthology/Varied Collection | Adult | Published in 2020

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Part 1Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Part 1: “Root”

Part 1, Introduction: “Begin” by Ayana Elizabeth Johnson & Katharine K. Wilkinson

Editors Ayana Elizabeth Johnson and Katharine K. Wilkinson introduce All We Can Save by highlighting an important female figure in early climate change science named Eunice Newton Foote. In 1856, Foote reached conclusions about carbon dioxide and planetary warming that reflect our current understanding of climate change (xvii). Her work was never formally recognized as hers, and the discoveries she made were ultimately attributed to a man named John Tyndall. Johnson and Wilkinson give Foote the title of a “climate feminist” (xviii), one who was involved in both women’s rights movements and climate research. In this introduction, the authors claim that the same patriarchal power that is destructive to “girls, women, and nonbinary people [and constricts and contorts boys and men]” is also destructive to the natural world (xviii). Likewise, without climate justice, there can never be justice for gender inequality, income inequality, and representation.

The authors list four key characteristics of a climate movement “renaissance” (xix). First, we must focus on making change rather than being in charge. Second, we must demonstrate a “commitment to responding to the climate crisis in ways that heal systemic injustices rather than deepen them” (xix). The third characteristic is a focus on “heart-centered” rather than “head-centered” leadership.