Guns Germs & Steel Cl (Tv Tie-In

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  • Edition: 00
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2005-07-17
  • Publisher: W W NORTON

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With a new chapter. The phenomenal bestseller--over 1.5 million copies sold--is now a major PBS special. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, Guns, Germs, and Steel is a brilliant work answering the question of why the peoples of certain continents succeeded in invading other continents and conquering or displacing their peoples. This edition includes a new chapter on Japan and all-new illustrations drawn from the television series. Until around 11,000 BC, all peoples were still Stone Age hunter/gatherers. At that point, a great divide occurred in the rates that human societies evolved. In Eurasia, parts of the Americas, and Africa, farming became the prevailing mode of existence when indigenous wild plants and animals were domesticated by prehistoric planters and herders. As Jared Diamond vividly reveals, the very people who gained a head start in producing food would collide with preliterate cultures, shaping the modern world through conquest, displacement, and genocide. The paths that lead from scattered centers of food to broad bands of settlement had a great deal to do with climate and geography. But how did differences in societies arise? Why weren't native Australians, Americans, or Africans the ones to colonize Europe? Diamond dismantles pernicious racial theories tracing societal differences to biological differences. He assembles convincing evidence linking germs to domestication of animals, germs that Eurasians then spread in epidemic proportions in their voyages of discovery. In its sweep, Guns, Germs and Steel encompasses the rise of agriculture, technology, writing, government, and religion, providing a unifying theory of human history as intriguing as the histories of dinosaurs and glaciers. 32 illustrations.

Author Biography

Jared Diamond is professor of geography at the University of California at Los Angeles.

Table of Contents

Prologue Yali's Question
The regionally differing courses of history
PART ONE From Eden to Cajamarca
Up to the Starting Line
What happened on all the continents before 11,000 B.C.?
A Natural Experiment of History
How geography molded societies on Polynesian islands
Collision at Cajamarca
Why the Inca emperor Atahuallpa did not capture King Charles I of Spain
PART TWO The Rise and Spread of Food Production
Farmer Power
The roots of guns, germs, and steel
History's Haves and Have-Nots
Geographic differences in the onset of food production
To Farm or Not to Farm
Causes of the spread of food production
How to Make an Almond
The unconscious development of ancient crops
Apples or Indians
Why did peoples of some regions fail to domesticate plants?
Zebras, Unhappy Marriages, and The Anna Karenina Principle
Why were most big wild mammal species never domesticated?
Spacious Skies and Tilted Axes
Why did food production spread at different rates on different continents?
PART THREE From Food to Guns, Germs, and Steel
Lethal Gift of Livestock
The evolution of germs
Blueprints and Borrowed Letters
The evolutions of writing
Necessity's Mother
The evolution of technology
From Egalitarianism to Kleptocracy
The evolution of government and religion
PART FOUR Around the World in Five Chapters
Yali's People
The histories of Australia and New Guinea
How China Became Chinese
The history of East Asia
Speedboat to Polynesia
The history of the Austronesian expansion
Hemispheres Colliding
The histories of Eurasia and the Americas compared
How Africa Became Black
The history of Africa
EPILOGUE The Future of Human History as a Science
Who are the Japanese?
2003 Afterword: Guns, Germs, and Steel Today
Acknowledgments 465(1)
Further Readings 466(31)
Credits 497(2)
Index 499

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