Guns germs and steel book summary
Guns, Germs, and Steel Summary from LitCharts | The creators of SparkNotesWelcome sign in sign up. You can enter multiple addresses separated by commas to send the article to a group; to send to recipients individually, enter just one address at a time. History Upside Down from the May 15, issue. My focus is on trends over whole continents since the last Ice Age; his, on much smaller areas for shorter times. In 11, BC, all societies everywhere were bands of preliterate hunter-gatherers with stone tools. By AD, that was still true in all of Australia, much of the Americas, and some of sub-Saharan Africa, but populous Eurasian societies already had state governments, writing, iron technology, and standing armies. Obviously, that is why Eurasians especially Europeans conquered peoples of other continents.
Guns, Germs, and Steel - 5 Minute Book Reviews #1
Guns, Germs, and Steel Summary
The book begins with a preface in which Diamond claims that the main purpose of his text is to explain why different countries developed in different manners. Diamond mentions Yali , a New Guinean politician interested in the history of his country and the colonization of New Guinea. Yali asks Diamond why some societies flourished more than the others—this is the question Diamond will try to answer in the book. For a long time, the Europeans and those from advanced industrial nations believed that the reason why some nations were less developed was that some peoples were naturally inferior to others. However, Diamond argues, this view doesn't hold up to examination, and part of the point of his book will be to disprove that view.
O h, for more history written by biologists. The great thing about Guns, Germs and Steel is the detail: Jared Diamond starts with a proposition every good Guardian reader would wish to believe — that all humans are born with much the same abilities — and then proceeds to argue, through meticulous and logical steps, that the playing field of prehistory was anything but level. The inequalities kicked off with the development of agriculture in one small part of the world, the so-called Fertile Crescent in what is now western Asia. Agriculture stimulates increasing population density, which means disease, which means acquired immunity. Civilisation requires the food surplus only agriculture can provide, but it also imposes a need for specialisation, for technology, for ingenuity. Competing civilisations and they turned up soon enough in Europe and the Middle East provoke an arms race.
When two strong men stand face to face,though they come from the ends of the earth. The result is an exciting and absorbing account of human history since the Pleistocene age, which culminates in a sketch of a future scientific basis for studying the history of humans that will command the same intellectual respect as current scientific studies of the history of other natural phenomena such as dinosaurs, nebulas and glaciers. This is an ambitious project, and no reviewer can comment on all of it with equal authority. My own background as an historian of European expansion and Asian response over the last two hundred years requires me to take most of the account of prehistory on trust - which is a drawback since Diamond asserts that most of the really important influences on modern history had already occurred before the birth of Christ. To a non-specialist, the account of human prehistory presented here seems plausible and well-founded - the argument is that, as homo sapiens evolved in Africa and migrated to colonise first Asia, then Europe, then Australia, and finally the Americas, so a technical progression from hunting to settled agriculture, and a societal progression from warring bands to complex sedentary civilisations took place largely determined by the environmental conditions in which different branches of the same species found themselves.
The book attempts to explain why Eurasian and North African civilizations have survived and conquered others, while arguing against the idea that Eurasian hegemony is due to any form of Eurasian intellectual , moral , or inherent genetic superiority.
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Guns, Germs, and Steel
In Guns, Germs, and Steel , Jared Diamond outlines the theory of geographic determinism, the idea that the differences between societies and societal development arise primarily from geographical causes. The book is framed as a response to a question that Diamond heard from Yali , a charismatic New Guinean politician. In Part One of the book, Diamond sketches out the course of recent human history, emphasizing the differences between civilizations. Beginning about half a million years ago, the first human beings emerged in Africa, and eventually migrated around the rest of the world in search of game and other sources of food. About 11, years ago, certain human beings developed agriculture—a major milestone in human history. By the 15th century A. For example, when Francisco Pizarro led a Spanish expedition to the Inca Empire in the early 16th century, he was able to defeat the Incan Emperor, Atahuallpa , easily.
Print eBook Audiobook. Some environments provide more starting materials and more favorable conditions for utilizing inventions and building societies than other environments. This is particularly notable in the rise of European peoples, which occurred because of environmental differences and not because of biological differences in the people themselves. There are four primary reasons Europeans rose to power and conquered the natives of North and South America, and not the other way around: 1 the continental differences in the plants and animals available for domestication, which led to more food and larger populations in Europe and Asia, 2 the rate of diffusion of agriculture, technology and innovation due to the geographic orientation of Europe and Asia east-west compared to the Americas north-south , 3 the ease of intercontinental diffusion between Europe, Asia, and Africa, and 4 the differences in continental size, which led to differences in total population size and technology diffusion. My notes are informal and often contain quotes from the book as well as my own thoughts. This summary also includes key lessons and important passages from the book. This is a list of authors, books, and concepts mentioned in Guns, Germs, and Steel, which might be useful for future reading.
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