Before Gillen Wood came to speak to us and before his book was introduced in the class, Weather, Climate, and Society. I had not known about Tambora and its significant impact on the world. I am very thankful to have been informed as I was introduced to something with as much significance as a genocide does in history. I am also grateful to have been introduced to Gillen’s way of teaching us about Tambora, he has written scientific history in connection to human affairs, a way he knew this information could reach many people. Thus, not only has Gillen helped to shine light on a world changing event, but also, a whole new way of engraining scientific history in all people, even those like me, who do not naturally gravitate to the sciences.
Tambora not only affected the people and climate in it’s immediate surroundings but all over the world due to its particles that spread when they dispersed into the stratosphere. The resulting climate shock caused sympathy and violence. As Wood informed us, Tambora caused communities to fall apart. In England, for example, there was a mentality of bread or blood. It was the1st demographic hit where agriculture could not be done. People had to go far to reach markets for food but some couldn’t even make it because of the condition they were in. The wholesale grain prices over the years shows the tragic shortage of food: (in the U.S). year 1815: 100, year 1816: 124, year 1817: 154, year 1818: 127, year 1819: 86, and year 1820: 59. In addition, to not see children suffer from starvation and other suffering mother’s would end the lives of their own children. According to Wood, in China, children were even sold and in Indonesia they were entered into slavery for the same reasons, because at least they would be fed. There is no question what a huge impact Tambora had on the world.
Thus, Wood had a big mission, to inform others about this historical moment that is more than science but also, a part of human’s history. He made this event significant and worthy to everyone with his book by showing us that Tambora has shaped who we are and our atmosphere in some way. This was particularly a new approach for me that I am very grateful for, I believe this is the way to reach people and make them care. Furthermore, through this mission he has also helped people think teleconnectedly. As Wood said, we miss a lot of our world unless we think this way. Everything is teleconnected, just look at what he has accomplished with connecting social systems and climate to Tambora. Wood has not only brought Tambora to our attention as a revolution, he has brought us a new approach that can get our world more involved with what is going in our atmosphere.