The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money, and Power Themes

Daniel Yergin
This Study Guide consists of approximately 136 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Prize.
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Hydrocarbon Society

Hydrocarbons go far beyond the limited number of oil-based fuels sought by the pioneers of oil exploration in the 1850s. They looked to light their houses and businesses cheaply and safely; at the time, they used coal to heat and power their factories. Coal was modern society's most essential commodity. As the gasoline-fueled automobile caught on, the wider application of oil became apparent, and science increasingly improved the refining processes and applications. By the mid-1950s, coal coexisted with oil; soon oil began to prevail, and with the full array of plastics, synthetic fabrics, and other hydrocarbon products, the industrial world was converted into a "Hydrocarbon Society" and its inhabitants "Hydrocarbon Man." It was no longer possible to live comfortably without all that oil offered without returning to primitive way. The problem is that oil is a finite resource, no matter how vast it currently appears to...

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This section contains 685 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money, and Power Study Guide
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