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In this book, I show how understanding the collapse of civilizations can help us prepare for a troubled future.

Pandemic, climate change, or war: our era is rife with the indicators of doomsday. In movies, books, and more, our imaginations run wild with visions of dreadful, abandoned cities and returning to the land in a desperate attempt at survival.

In The Next Apocalypse, I argue that we completely misunderstand how disaster works. Examining past collapses of civilizations, such as the Maya and Rome, he argues that these breakdowns are actually less about cataclysmic destruction than they are about long processes of change. In short: it’s what happens after the initial uproar that matters. Some people abandon their homes and neighbors; others band together to start anew. As we anticipate our own fate, we see that it was communities, not lone heroes, who survived past apocalypses—and who will survive the next.

Fusing archaeology, survivalism, and social criticism, I think you will find

The Next Apocalypse an important read for anxious times.

Published by Basic Books

“Begley digs into cultural apocalyptic fantasies (as reflected in TV, movies, books, and survivalist subcultures) to see how such concepts compare to actual apocalyptic events. This sociological and scientific exploration is a quiet surprise of a book that will make readers question assumptions about civilizational collapse and apocalypses in general… Full of witty anecdotes about survivalism and prepper culture, Begley’s book is an absolute joy to read and a hidden gem.”
―Library Journal


“an insightful overview of the fantasies and realities of catastrophes . . . solid popular science.”―Kirkus


“An insightful look at the history of natural and man-made disasters and how people have survived them… Extensively researched and evenhanded, this is a valuable resource for preparing for the next crisis.”―Publishers Weekly

“Begley expertly explains how a doomsday can occur (and includes suggestions on short term survival) but goes easy on the doom, preferring knowledge and preparation over fear and panic.”―Booklist

“A calm, practical and fascinating look at the worst 'what if' scenario.”
―Tristan Gooley

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