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Obras por Jay Owens


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You just never know what you might find out when you make a deep dive into something you generally barely notice and often take for granted.

Such is what Jay Owens, no doubt, learned about dust.

Dust: The Modern World in a Trillion Particles is the fruit of such a deep dive into what proves all pervasive: the tiny particles of the world we call dust.

Most dust out there has no real human origin; it’s the result of all sorts of natural forces, and the author does spend some time discussing how such dust influences climate and weather and such things. The author’s primary focus is on the dust which is caused by human efforts: the dust in our homes, the dust created by human works of engineering, etc.

The author speaks of her experience living in London and visiting California, Greenland, New Mexico, the Panhandle of Oklahoma, and even Uzbekistan, and learning about what dust can do: the origins of industrial-scale dust, the ash of fires, the fine dust of chemicals blowing off of the dry Owens Lake bed and what was the Aral Sea, the Dust Bowl, radioactive dust, and what dust does in and to ice. She considers the “intimate dust” of the never-ending dust in our houses, the result of the slow decomposition of every item in a house, and the constant striving to remove said dust, who is supposed to do that removal, and how impossible it proves to be.

Dust might seem small and trivial, yet it proves far more important than we might imagine - to our health, to the health of our environment, and how we relate to the world. We don’t think about it, but our efforts are responsible for a good amount of it, and a lot of it in unhealthy forms. A worthy consideration of something we’d rather not consider much about.
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deusvitae | Nov 20, 2023 |