Corona, Climate, Chronic Emergency
War Communism in the Twenty-First Century
Part of the Verso Pamphlets series
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224 pages / September 2020 / 9781839762154
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September 2020 / 9781839762178

What does the COVID 19 tell us about the climate breakdown, and what should we do about it?

The economic and social impact of the coronavirus pandemic has been unprecedented. Governments have spoken of being at war and find themselves forced to seek new powers in order to maintain social order and prevent the spread of the virus. This is often exercised with the notion that we will return to normal as soon as we can. What if that is not possible? Secondly, if the state can mobilize itself in the face of an invisible foe like this pandemic, it should also be able to confront visible dangers such as climate destruction with equal force.

In Corona, Climate, Chronic Emergency, leading environmental thinker, Andreas Malm demands that this war-footing state should be applied on a permanent basis to the ongoing climate front line. He offers proposals on how the climate movement should use this present emergency to make that case. There can be no excuse for inaction any longer.


“The prose crackles—this is an urgent book … Electrifying.”

“A remarkable work, a tour de force … Malm seems to have summoned the energies of the crisis and guided them onto the page. The prose crackles, this is an urgent book … electrifying.”

“Compared with most other books that discuss the crisis, its solutions are more realistic because they are more radical.”

“Eloquent and important … [Corona, Climate, Chronic Emergency] gets the origins and the scale of the cascading ecological crises we face exactly right. Compared with most other books that discuss the crisis, its solutions are more realistic because they are more radical.”

“There is a lot to discuss and debate in Corona, Climate, Chronic Emergency. It is a helpful revolutionary socialist contribution to understanding the political forms and strategies that are urgent for survival and revolution in a world on fire.”

“A bracing 224-page polemic written in the wake of Covid-19 … Malm elucidates the links between the climate crisis and pandemics.”

“Indisputably one of the most serious theorists writing about the crisis of nature today.”

“Few have connected the climate and capitalism crises with such acid clarity as Malm.”

“Darkly elegant and studded with recondite history.”

“The first publicly accessible book that connects pandemics, climate change, and capitalism … well-researched and beautifully written.”

“A forensic explanation of the combined impacts and barbarism of climate trashing and zoonotic plagues.”

“It is hard to argue with [Malm’s] central point, linking extractive capitalism, ecological collapse and the increased risk of pandemic.”

“A tour-de-force of academic writing.”

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