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The Story of Stuff | [Annie Leonard]

The Story of Stuff

We have a system in crisis, but Annie Leonard shows us that this is not the way things have to be. It's within our power to stop the environmental damage, social injustice, and health hazards caused by polluting production and excessive consumption, and Leonard shows us how. Expansive, galvanizing, and sobering yet optimistic, The Story of Stuff transforms how we think about our lives and our relationship to the planet.
Regular Price:$27.93
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Publisher's Summary

How Our Obsession with Stuff is Trashing the Planet, Our Communities, and Our Health - and a Vision for Change

We have a problem with Stuff. With just 5 percent of the world's population, were consuming 30 percent of the world's resources and creating 30 percent of the worlds waste. If everyone consumed at U.S. rates, we would need three to five planets!

This alarming fact drove Annie Leonard to create the Internet film sensation The Story of Stuff, which has been viewed over 10 million times by people around the world. In her sweeping, groundbreaking book of the same name, Leonard tracks the life of the Stuff we use every day where our cotton T-shirts, laptop computers, and aluminum cans come from, how they are produced, distributed, and consumed, and where they go when we throw them out. Like Rachel Carson's Silent Spring, The Story of Stuffis a landmark book that will change the way people think and the way they live.

Leonard's message is startlingly clear: we have too much Stuff, and too much of it is toxic. Outlining the five stages of our consumption-driven economy from extraction through production, distribution, consumption, and disposal, she vividly illuminates its frightening repercussions. Visiting garbage dumps and factories around the world, Leonard reveals the true story behind our possessions why it's cheaper to replace a broken TV than to fix it; how the promotion of "perceived obsolescence" encourages us to toss out everything from shoes to cell phones while they're still in perfect shape; and how factory workers in Haiti, mine workers in Congo, and everyone who lives and works within this system pay for our cheap goods with their health, safety, and quality of life. Meanwhile we, as consumers, are compromising our health and well-being, whether it's through neurotoxins in our pillows or lead leaching into our kids food from their lunch boxes and all this Stuff isn't even making us happier!

©2010 Annie Leonard (P)2010 Simon & Schuster

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What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (57 )
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  •  
    Meghan De Beque, CO, United States 04-24-10
    Meghan De Beque, CO, United States 04-24-10 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A wonderful eye opening book everyone should read!"

    Annie Leonard does a wonderful job of laying out the truth of many environmental and social issues and how they are all tied together. She does a wonderful job of laying out facts without loading them down with technical jargon and without a the major guilt trip. It has motivated me to make significant changes in my lifestyle and to encourage friends and family to do the same, for themselves and the planet!

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John sImpsonville, SC, United States 11-29-10
    John sImpsonville, SC, United States 11-29-10
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    "College course Reading Assignment"

    I had to read this book for my Eng 101 class, with six papers to write and only three weeks to read this book i didn't have the time (or energy), so when i found this site with this audio-book i jumped at the chance.
    The narrator is a little corny but she does a good job of reading. The only major down side of this Audio-book is its not separated in to chapters, so you have to remember the time you left off and continue from there. Other then that totally worth a good listening

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Wilmington, DE, United States 11-22-10
    John Wilmington, DE, United States 11-22-10 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Sample is misleading"

    If I had paid more attention to Ashesh's review I might have saved myself some money - I have to agree word for word with that assessment:
    "I really wanted to like this audiobook, but unfortunately the author/narrator made it impossible. Ms. Leonard is clearly passionate about the topic, and the information is quite interesting, but her delivery is just "off", and hence made it impossible to complete. I'm sad to say that I'm going to stop listening to it halfway through"
    In my case I also felt that the sample misleads one to believe the book would be similar to Jame Burke's "Connections" - a fascinating history of the sometimes odd links that lead to the things we see and use today.
    It's not.
    It might be fascinating if you love listening to a bunch of statistics, but I don't. A pity because her topic is vitally important for our future.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    shah 07-19-10
    shah 07-19-10
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    "written word better than spoken"

    I really wanted to like this audiobook, but unfortunately the author/narrator made it impossible. Ms. Leonard is clearly passionate about the topic, and the information is quite interesting, but her delivery is just "off", and hence made it impossible to complete. I'm sad to say that I'm going to stop listening to it halfway through...

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Clare B. Gerber Penfield, NY 10-29-12
    Clare B. Gerber Penfield, NY 10-29-12 Member Since 2010

    cbg

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    "A Must Read Book"
    What made the experience of listening to The Story of Stuff the most enjoyable?

    Reading The Story of Stuff made me feel like I was living in another world. I do not educate myself to the harmful tradgic events surround me. I carelessly live my life unaware of the damage I could be causing my mind or body. Change is difficult but I am seriously working on some issues.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The whole book was an adventure in awareness, growth and society.


    Which character – as performed by Annie Leonard – was your favorite?

    No one character comes to mind. All references were worthwhile.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes! I may not have wanted to listen to this book but it was one that I needed to listen too.


    Any additional comments?

    How do we educate other about the abuses going on in our society and in third world countries.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shannon Sault Ste Marie, ON, Canada 06-19-12
    Shannon Sault Ste Marie, ON, Canada 06-19-12
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    "A book that everyone needs to read!"

    What a great book! Whether you are already an environmental activist, or if you are completely new to the concept, this story will draw you in. Annie Leonard dives into the issues that we like to ignore about our own consumer culture, while making a convincing argument to re-consider the way that we treat our 'stuff', and challenges us to understand the implications of our choices as a consumer. Most importantly, she urges us to consider how we can collectively make a change in the system. It is a story that everyone needs to hear, or can act as a reminder to those of us who may get caught up in the North American way of life - our possessions influence our health, our way of life, and cause social injustices that none of us should find acceptable. She does a wonderful job of conveying the message through her performance in this audiobook, and makes references to sources that will discuss these issues more in-depth. I suggest this book to everyone!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joanie C 07-15-11
    Joanie C 07-15-11 Member Since 2010
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    "Good info, bad presentation"

    I read the previous reviews and thought to myself "surely there is enough good information in this book to outweigh whatever narration issues there might be." And I was wrong. I am happy that the author is passionate about her subject but her overemphasis of every other word makes her sound like a cheerleader on speed, and distracts from her message in a significant way. It's like trying to listen to a book written in CAPSLOCK. Perhaps I will read the book in physical form, because I had to stop listening to the audiobook about halfway through. Heed the reviewers and don't get this as an audiobook.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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