- Kai Kang in conversation with Salomon Kroonenberg and Sander Bais
Date: Wed 31 August Time: 02.00 pm Venue: BIBF
- Literature and the Elements
Date: Thu 1 September Time: 07.00 pm Venue: The Bookworm Beijing
Life and work
Salomon Kroonenberg (born in Leiden) studied physical geography at the University of Amsterdam and completed his doctorate there in 1976. Between 1972 and 1982 he worked as a geologist in Surinam, Swaziland and Columbia before becoming Professor of Geology and Mineralogy at the Agricultural University of Wageningen. In 1996 he left Wageningen to become Professor of Applied Geology at the Technical University of Delft. Until recently Kroonenberg was a columnist for weekly Intermediair. A collection of his columns was published as Stop the Continents! (1996).
De menselijke maat. De aarde over tienduizend jaar
The Human Scale sparkles with erudite iconoclasm. Salomon Kroonenberg tackles such explosive issues as climate change, the greenhouse effect and rising sea levels both unconventionally and incisively. His tone and line of reasoning demonstrate his aversion to doom-mongering; in fact he fires a formidable salvo of arguments at fashionable alarmist forecasts that suggest the earth is heading for man-made catastrophe.
Kroonenberg takes the reader the globe from the Caspian Sea (with its extreme changes in surface level) to Columbian volcano Nevado Del Ruiz, which spewed tons of mud over the small town of Armero in 1985, turning it into a necropolis. At the same time he produces chains of facts and correlations, which he binds together into a kind of geological Theory of Everything. He offers a surprisingly new and topical perspective by forcing the reader to look over the edge of a vast abyss of time, measured in billions of years.
Kroonenberg challenges politicians, scientists and other opinion makers to extend their models of the future, which often look ahead no more than a century, to at least the year 10,000. He wants them to measure events not only against a human scale but against that of the natural world.
Translation in Chinese
- Kroonenberg, Salomon. [(De menselijke maat)] Chinese. Shanghai: Shanghai Literature and Arts Publishing House, in preparation since 2010.