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Alex Ingman

Period 4

Humanities 1100

Hardy

Journal- The Conundrum of Consumption

1. The author of the work is Alan Thein Durning who was born in 1964 and is still alive

today. He graduated from Oberlin College, and after became a researcher at the

worldwatch Institute of Washington D.C.. After graduating he went back to Seattle and

founded the Northwest Environmental Watch, which focuses on promoting sustainable

environmental policies for the northwest region.

2. The title is The Conundrum of Consumption. The title is interesting because a

Conundrum is defined as a problem without a real solution, and associates that with

consumption. After reading this work it is a very accurate description of what the text is

about.

3. The was written in the early 1990s. Being a person of monitoring the environment, Alan

Thein would know as good as anybody about the problem of a rising population, and a

limited amount of resources.

4. The intended audience is everybody, but especially the consumer. Those who are

constantly consuming without any thought of conserving.

5. Sidney Quarrier contemplated the conundrum that is consumption. He thought of his own

impact, how much he bought, used, and wasted all sorts of things in his everyday life.

Then his pondering took him to the thought of the global industrial networks impact on
the world as they also are massive consumers. Sid thought of all the things wasted in the

world to get the new car, new tv, better clothes ect. While wasting the perfectly good

slightly older ones. The way most americans live cannot be practiced by the entire

worlds population. Our planet cant sustain such demand of resources. Sid emphasizes

the problem of over\consumption, but also of underconsumption. He gave an example of

farmers who if there wasnt a demand would abuse the land for themselves due to

economic impoverishment. The problem of consumption is a conundrum indeed.

6. The work makes the point that the way we (Americans) live cannot be openly practiced

by everyone on this planet. It would take several worlds to compensate for such a

demanding lifestyle for billions of people. The problem of consumption doesnt have a

clear solution, but somewhere to start is to recognize how much you affect the

environment and how much you really consume. If everyone were to do that then maybe,

just maybe, our planet could sustain everyone living at a level similar to most Americans

today.

7. I completely agree with this text. It explains the many problems associated with

consumption extremely well, from multiple angles. This problem is often times

overlooked, and yet it is something that if we dont do anything about will make the

situation even worse. The world is changing, as the gap between developed and third

world countries decreases, the worlds resources are also rapidly decreasing. Our world

cant sustain 7 billion consumers, but it can certainly sustain 7 billion conservers.