Alan Weisman | Countdown: Our Last, Best Hope for a Future on Earth?
The Overpopulation Podcast
by Population Balance
2d ago
In this episode with award-winning author and journalist Alan Weisman, we discuss his 2013 book Countdown: Our Last, Best Hope for a Future on Earth? capturing his journey to over 20 countries over five continents to ask what experts agreed were probably the most important questions on Earth, and also the hardest. ‘How many humans can the planet hold without capsizing?’ This wide-ranging and immensely stimulating interview captures how growth-biased cultures, religions, nationalities, tribes, and political systems are collectively undermining our ability to live within planetary limits, and al ..read more
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Jennifer Watling Neal and Zachary Neal | Getting the Numbers Right: The Childfree Choice More Prevalent than Reported
The Overpopulation Podcast
by Population Balance
2w ago
In this episode with Dr. Zachary Neal and Dr. Jennifer Watling Neal, we explore their research about the prevalence and characteristics of childfree adults in the US and globally. Despite the fact that people without children make up a significant portion of the population, both nationally in the US (20-25%) and globally, this group remains largely underrepresented in policymaking and demographic surveys. Driven by the desire for more inclusive representation of this group and for more objective demographic reporting, Zak and Jenna’s research tackles the inconsistency across various surveys ..read more
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Travis Rieder | Catastrophe Ethics: How to Choose Well in a World of Tough Choices
The Overpopulation Podcast
by Population Balance
1M ago
In this episode with bioethicist and moral philosopher Dr. Travis N. Rieder, we discuss his latest book Catastrophe Ethics, in which he explores how individuals can make morally decent choices in a world of confusing and often terrifying problems. We explore the morally exhausting and puzzling nature of modern life in which individual actions can often seem insignificant in the face of massive and complex systems. Rieder offers suggestions on how to overcome this sense of ‘moral dumbfounding’ so that we can better align our actions with our values towards ethical living. Among the small and la ..read more
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Christopher Ketcham | The Megamachine and Green Growth Delusions
The Overpopulation Podcast
by Population Balance
2M ago
In this interview with freelance writer Christopher Ketcham, we unpack the techno-industrial extractivism that plagues modern societies and the media’s complicity in failing to challenge the growth model on which it is based. We discuss Chris’ book This Land: How Cowboys, Capitalism, and Corruption Are Ruining the American West in which he outlines the environmental destruction caused by unregulated public lands livestock grazing, corruptly supported by the federal land management agencies, who are supposed to be regulating these industries. He tracks the Department of Interior’s failure to im ..read more
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Angela Saini | The Patriarchs: How Men Came to Rule
The Overpopulation Podcast
by Population Balance
2M ago
In this interview with award-winning science journalist Angela Saini, based on her bold and radical book The Patriarchs: How Men Came to Rule, we explore the roots and complex history of how patriarchy first became embedded in societies and spread across the globe from prehistory into the present. Angela discusses how gendered roles, pronatalism, and militarism – key features of patriarchies – are very recent phenomena, which emerged with the rise of the early states and empires, with pressure on women to have many children for the state and on men to defend the state. By detailing the diversi ..read more
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Diana Coole | The Toxification of Population Discourse: How Population Became a Dirty Word
The Overpopulation Podcast
by Population Balance
3M ago
When and why did population become a dirty word? And why are so many people shamed for advocating for population reduction? Despite innumerable scientific studies showing the impact of human overpopulation and overconsumption on mounting social and ecological catastrophes, including climate change, biodiversity destruction, ocean acidification, resource scarcity, and conflict, most policymakers, journalists, and academics are too afraid to discuss population. In this episode with political theorist and feminist scholar, Dr. Diana Coole, we unpack the history of the toxification of the populati ..read more
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Asher Miller & Rob Dietz | Navigating the Great Unraveling with Resilience
The Overpopulation Podcast
by Population Balance
3M ago
In this episode, we chat with Asher Miller and Rob Dietz of the Post Carbon Institute about their latest report "Welcome to the Great Unraveling", which explores ways to navigate the environmental and social breakdown resulting from multiple intersecting crises. Recognizing human supremacy and overshoot as the drivers of the polycrisis, we discuss the threat of increased polarization, techno-solutionism, conflict, and suffering as the situation worsens. We speak about the need to grapple with complexity, uncertainty, and conflicting priorities, while maintaining social cohesion within societie ..read more
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Hope Ferdowsian | Phoenix Rising: Pathways toward Animal and Human Liberation
The Overpopulation Podcast
by Population Balance
4M ago
Dr. Hope Ferdowsian, president of Phoenix Zones Initiatives (PZI) and a public health physician, discusses how she and her colleagues are working to dismantle the roots of oppression, exploitation, and domination harming humans and non-humans. She highlights the physical and psychological suffering and harm that animals face in food production and in research labs, and how this systematic exploitation of animals is linked to violence and conflict globally. These same systems, propped up through powerful lobbying efforts by corporate elites, also contribute to global issues like hunger, malnutr ..read more
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Kevin Bales | Population Growth, Modern Slavery, and Ecocide
The Overpopulation Podcast
by Population Balance
5M ago
Dr. Kevin Bales, world-renowned expert on contemporary global slavery, shines a light on the human rights violations and ecocidal impacts of modern day slavery, which tragically still exists in much of the world today. Dr. Bales discusses the history of slavery, from ancient civilizations to modern times, highlighting how it has evolved over time, including the role that population growth, patriarchal pronatalism, religion, political regimes, global and local economies, and conflict play in perpetuating it. With practices such as debt bondage, forced marriage, and labor exploitation, modern en ..read more
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Isabel Fassbender | Neoliberalism in the Womb: Japan’s Answer to its Baby-Shortage Panic
The Overpopulation Podcast
by Population Balance
6M ago
Japan-based feminist scholar, Dr. Isabel Fassbender, discusses her new book, Active Pursuit of Pregnancy: Neoliberalism, Postfeminism and the Politics of Reproduction in Contemporary Japan, and how a toxic mix of patriarchy, biomedical capitalism, and nationalism has emerged in response to Japan’s slightly declining population. As a country whose ecological footprint is nearly 8 times its biocapacity, and whose citizens chronically suffer from a culture of overwork and socio-economic and political disempowerment, Japan should be welcoming a decline in its population. However, in keeping with i ..read more
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