Why did the Roman Empire collapse? Kyle Harper’s very readable book The Fate of Rome makes a persuasive case that this was much to do with climate change and epidemic disease, both of which were consequences of the process of Empire itself.
It is salutary to reflect that such a political system is a process that has consequences on its environment and its citizens and their well-being. The parallels with today’s climate change and threatening global pandemic are obvious.
We could see this fatalistically in cataclysmic terms, or we can see it optimistically as being a story in need of constant renewal and redirection. It’s our choice.
My notes below outline the Empire’s story.Read More »