There’s No Place Like Home

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“There’s no place like home.”

The saying “No place like home” is originally from the 1822 song written by John Howard Payne “Home! Sweet Home!” It’s also a famous quote from the 1939 adaptation of Frank L. Baum’s book “The Wizard of Oz”. Ever since, it has been used as a brief yet precise way of expressing special affinity for one’s home.

In 1972, the possible most widely spread photo in history was taken from outer space by an astronaut on board in Apollo 17. The image dubbed as “The Blue Marble” is the first photograph of the Earth’s spherical shape. Lunar module pilot Harrison Schmidt of Apollo 17 remarked “Even the first generation to settle on the Moon will think of the Earth as home.”

However, some experts have decided to call this era “Anthropocene” from the word “anthropo” which means “man” and “cene” for “new”. This suggests that the planet has been altered by human hands, making it less inhabitable for other organisms, and eventually for humans themselves. As Will Steffen, the head of Australia’s National University’s Climate Change Institute puts it, (It) will be another strong reminder to the general public that we are now having undeniable impacts on the environment at the scale of the planet as a whole, so much so that a new geological epoch has begun.

In 1994 non-fiction book by Carl Sagan, he verbalised Earth’s incomparable value as mankind’s one and only place for survival: “The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.”

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