cdc-coteauxdegaronne
» » Guns, Germs and Steel
eBook Guns, Germs and Steel ePub

eBook Guns, Germs and Steel ePub

by Doug Ordunio,Jared Diamond

  • ISBN: 141594296X
  • Category: Social Sciences
  • Subcategory: Politics
  • Author: Doug Ordunio,Jared Diamond
  • Publisher: Books On Tape (1999)
  • ePub book: 1800 kb
  • Fb2 book: 1156 kb
  • Other: mbr rtf doc mobi
  • Rating: 4.9
  • Votes: 388

Description

Now must be added to their select number. Diamond meshes technological mastery with historical sweep, anecdotal delight with broad conceptual vision, and command of sources with creative leaps

Now must be added to their select number. Diamond meshes technological mastery with historical sweep, anecdotal delight with broad conceptual vision, and command of sources with creative leaps. No finer work of its kind has been published this year, or for many past.

Guns, Germs and Steel is the iconic 1998 work by Jared Diamond positing so clearly the argument that biogeographical factors are the determinant behind relative rates of progress and success among different human societies. His work argues in the very long-term it is ultimately biogeographic factors that are the ultimate cause of trends in human history.

Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies (previously titled Guns, Germs and Steel: A Short History of Everybody for the Last 13,000 Years) is a 1997 transdisciplinary non-fiction book by Jared Diamond, professor of geography and physiolog.

Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies (previously titled Guns, Germs and Steel: A Short History of Everybody for the Last 13,000 Years) is a 1997 transdisciplinary non-fiction book by Jared Diamond, professor of geography and physiology at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). In 1998, Guns, Germs, and Steel won the Pulitzer Prize for general nonfiction and the Aventis Prize for Best Science Book.

Discover new books on Goodreads. See if your friends have read any of Doug Ordunio's books. Doug Ordunio’s Followers (1). Doug Ordunio. Doug Ordunio’s books. Polygon: A Non-Linear Exploration of Three Lives.

fp Jared Diamond-Guns Germs and Steel. Folkscanomy: A Library of Books. Additional Collections. Uploaded by Jason Scott on March 3, 2014. ark:/13960/t1xd3gd97.

Written by Jared Diamond, Audiobook narrated by Doug Ordunio. In his earlier best sellers Guns, Germs and Steel and Collapse, Jared Diamond transformed our understanding of what makes civilizations rise and fall

Written by Jared Diamond, Audiobook narrated by Doug Ordunio. In his earlier best sellers Guns, Germs and Steel and Collapse, Jared Diamond transformed our understanding of what makes civilizations rise and fall. Now, in the final audiobook in this monumental trilogy, he reveals how successful nations recover from crisis through selective change - a coping mechanism more commonly associated with personal trauma.

By Jared Diamond Read by Doug Ordunio. Diamond also dissects racial theories of global history, and the resulting work-Guns, Germs and Steel-is a major contribution to our understanding the evolution of human societies. Also by Jared Diamond. See all books by Jared Diamond. By Jared Diamond Read by Doug Ordunio. Category: History Audiobooks. Jared Diamond is a professor of geography at the University of California, Los Angeles.

by Jared Diamond (Author), Doug Ordunio (Narrator). Two decades ago a UCLA geography professor named Jared Diamond published Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies

by Jared Diamond (Author), Doug Ordunio (Narrator). Two decades ago a UCLA geography professor named Jared Diamond published Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies. The book won a 1997 Pulitzer Prize and quickly became a New York Times bestseller.

Guns, Germs and Steel is an extremely informative book that will make you question a lot of topics related to the development of society. Audio History Nonfiction.

Comments

Amarin Amarin
Two decades ago a UCLA geography professor named Jared Diamond published Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies. Diamond hypothesized that the arc of human history was dramatically shifted by geographic, environmental, biological, and other factors, resulting in the worldwide dominance of the leading industrial powers during the past 500 years. The book won a 1997 Pulitzer Prize and quickly became a New York Times bestseller.

Why is economic development so uneven around the world?

Diamond posed questions fundamental to the experience of the human race. “Why did wealth and power [among nations] become distributed as they now are, rather than in some other way?” “[W]hy did human development proceed at such different rates on different continents?” “[W]hy were Europeans, rather than Africans or Native Americans, the ones to end up with guns, the nastiest germs, and steel?” In his award-winning book, Diamond posited a “unified synthesis”—a unified field theory of history. Drawing from his wide-ranging knowledge of medicine, evolutionary biology, physiology, linguistics, and anthropology as well as geography, he surveyed the history of the past 13,000 years and identified plausible answers to the questions he had posed. In the process, he wrote what I consider to be the single most illuminating book on the history of the human race.

Academic critics howled

However, academic critics howled shortly after the publication of Guns, Germs, and Steel:

They referred to supposed errors in geography and history, which I find largely pointless. For example, geographers complained that Diamond referred to Eurasia as a single continent rather than separately to Asia, North Africa, and Europe. That’s nitpicking, as far as I’m concerned. And many of these “errors” could simply be differences of opinion. Academics are unbearably dogmatic and dismissive of those who reject their pet theories.

Some accused him of racism, although he rejected racist explanations early, forcefully, and often. That criticism is not only unsupported by Diamond’s book, it’s insulting to the reader.

The most common and far-reaching complaint was that Diamond had succumbed to the heresy of “environmental determinism.” Understandably, Diamond grounded his argument in geographic and environmental factors—but he repeatedly cited numerous other influences as well. Ultimately, of course, everything we humans do, and everything we’ve done in the millions of years since our ancestors first climbed out of the trees, has been environmentally determined.

There were complaints that Diamond had overlooked the contrast between temperate and tropical zones (he didn’t) and that he had only explained what happened 500 years ago but not subsequently (untrue). It might appear that at least some of Diamond’s critics never read the book.

However, the most aggravating criticism was that he had ignored the motives that led the industrial nations to undertake colonialism and imperialism on a broad scale. Diamond addressed only the means that enabled the colonial powers to dominate, not the reasons why they chose to do so. To my mind, that’s no error. He didn’t pretend to explain colonialism and imperialism, merely to describe how it had become possible.

Is it possible that most of these academic critics were simply bitter that Diamond hadn’t cited their own specialized research?

The roots of academic criticism

Though the critics undoubtedly uncovered a misplaced fact or unwarranted conclusion here and there through the book, the errors were exceedingly minor in the context of Diamond’s expansive hypothesis. It should be clear to any dispassionate reader that the academic reaction stemmed, above all, from narrow-mindedness and jealousy. The world of academia today is atomized. Specialties, sub-specialties, and sub-sub-specialties abound. It’s not unusual for a scholar to build a career on the study of a single obscure question that, when answered, will be of interest to virtually nobody. Interdisciplinary studies are frowned upon in most academic circles. Generalists are regarded as “not serious.” And scholars who write popular books, must less bestsellers, can expect a chilly reception from their peers.

A wealth of meaning behind the title

To understand where the academic critics went wrong, it’s useful to look at what Diamond signified by his title, Guns, Germs, and Steel. Early in his book, he dwells on the confrontation between the Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro and the Inca god-king Atahuallpa. “The immediate reasons for Pizarro’s success included military technology based on guns, steel weapons [such as swords and daggers], and horses; infectious diseases endemic in Eurasia; European maritime technology; the centralized political organization of European states; and writing. The title of this book will serve as shorthand for those proximate factors.”

Diamond’s argument in a nutshell

In a Prologue, Diamond poses the question at the heart of this book. He quotes a friend in what is now Papua New Guinea from a conversation in 1972, when he was studying bird evolution there: “‘Why is it that you white people developed so much cargo [goods] and brought it to New Guinea, but we black people had little cargo of our own?'” To answer the question, Diamond begins his story around the year 11,000 BCE, when the last Ice Age was drawing to a close and human beings were beginning to form villages in a few places around the world. It’s unclear whether the formation of villages preceded the deliberate cultivation and production of food, or vice versa. However, regardless of the sequence, that shift from hunter-gatherer society to agriculturally based settlements set in motion the course of events that have led to the “civilization” in which we live.

Diamond argues, convincingly, that the much greater availability of domesticable plants and large animals in Eurasia than in sub-Saharan Africa and the Americas. Furthermore, he explains that the east-west orientation of Eurasia from the Bering Strait to the Atlantic Ocean made it possible for the development of agriculture and animal husbandry to spread quickly to distant lands. By contrast, the north-south orientation of the Americas and sub-Saharan Africa—and the presence of barriers such as the Sahara Desert, the Panamanian Isthmus, and the deserts of northern Mexico and southwestern United States—impeded the spread of these (and, later, other) new technologies to the extremities of those continents. The advent of food production enabled the development of ever-larger settlements. This, in turn, spelled the emergence of labor specialization and eventually the growth of empires as well as the appearance and spread of communicable diseases contracted from domesticated animals. Those differences in historical development eventually led to the “guns, germs, and steel” that made Eurasian dominance possible—and dictated the huge differences in economic development between what today we call East and West.

Guns, Germs, and Steel is crammed with facts and densely written. It doesn’t make for light reading. But if you have any interest in understanding how the world came to be as it is, you’ll find this book highly rewarding.
Skunk Black Skunk Black
Here is an author with an inquisitive mind. He searches, not how human races are different, but how they got there. What are the mechanisms that drove their various civilizations in such different trajectories? There exist only a limited number of plants and mammals that lend themselves to domestication and their availability determines the chances of hunter-gatherers to turn into a settled society and to progress in further advancement. In ancient times, if those essential domesticates were not present on your continent, you were indeed a have-not. In these pages you travel around the world and witness, how such factors have favored some sections of humanity more than others.
This book is a wellspring of information about where we come from and the author distributes it out of a basket of abundant knowledge. You witness the changing face of humanity, usually under the passionate hand of brutality, from Khoisans to Bantus in Africa, from Negritos to Austro-Asians and Austronesians in the Far East, from the Ainus to Japanese, and then of course in that collision of the white man with the Redskins. The incredible judgment dispensed by Francisco Pizarro upon the Incas, supposedly in honor of the Church and the Holy Roman Emperor, will make you shake your head for a long time.
In contrast to such scholarly research, it is hard to stomach the tasteless comments in some of the one-star reviews of this book. They remind you of what the Bible says about pearls and where you are not to cast them.
Fordregelv Fordregelv
Over the years I have read many books on science and/or history, some good, some not so good. GG&S ranks a one of the best and, for me, is a true classic. The author, Jared Diamond, is a first class writer and his text is extremely easy to follow even though he covers some highly complex concepts. As in his other books, Diamond's style is like taking a class in anthropology or sociology, only with out the mid-term finals. GG&S was a best seller and winner of many awards for science books; Aventis, Phi Beta Kappa and Pulitzer. All this attention did not prevent it from being controversial and, to this day, subject to intense debate among his peers in the scientific community. In GG&S you will read one mans interpretation and conclusions that may, or may not, differ from another writers point of view. We, as the interested layperson, can only benefit from this sort of exchange. Published over 15 years ago many of Diamond's conclusions may have changed, even for him, or possibly been overturned but his basic idea is still valid. (This edition includes a 2003 Afterword by Diamond: "G,G,&S Today" that addresses many of these issues) Prior to about 40 thousand years ago all humans were stone-age hunter-gatherers that lived in isolated bands or family groups that probably viewed all strangers with suspicion. What happened to change that simple beginning into the highly disparate societies that we have today? How is it that some groups seem to have so many advantages of modern life while others are still living as hunter-gatherers? But, whatever social system they are living under, people are basically the same. Australian Aborigines are just as intelligent and capable of coherent thought as any upper-class European, they only differ in their environmental life style. Racial differences do not play a part in who are the "haves" and who are the "have-nots". So, if race is not a factor, what is? Concepts like; continental axis orientation, geographical diffusion, domestication potential of plants and animals all help to clarify the issue. The development of agriculture led to a more settled life style and the beginning of complex societies. Domestication of animals for work or food resulted in exposure to new germs and, in some cases, immunity to certain diseases that were specific to the region of origin. The list goes on; pottery making, metallurgy, exploitation of maritime resources and trade options. All these factors, and more, have contributed to who, and when, will be the first to develop the guns, germs, and steel needed for their enterprising ventures into exploration and conquest. While I had no technical problems with this Kindle edition there are some "publisher omissions" that are unfortunate. Missing are the photo portraits of people from around the world as well as many of the maps and, lastly, the index. You would think that a high caliber publisher like W.W. Norton would put a little more effort and care into their e-reader releases.

LastRanger