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Extended Audio Sample Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies, by Jared Diamond Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (91,691 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Jared Diamond Narrator: Doug Orduni Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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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

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Quotes & Awards

  • Winner of the 1998 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Cathy | 2/10/2014

    " I am glad there are people like Jared Diamond who are looking at us and asking the right questions. Then working very hard to find answers. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by David Fuller | 2/5/2014

    " Really loved this crystallization of some aspects of world history into an explanation of (not an apology for) why certain areas supported highly urban, technological societies and why others did not (or didn't need to). I had known about some aspects of the conflict between the Spanish and the Aztecs and Incas, but the degree to which animal husbandry and highly urban societies contributed to certain civilizations' resistance to disease is fascinating. Also, the geographic inconvenience in the Americas of the tiny strip of land at the equator that narrowed (or eliminated) the chances that draft animals from the southern hemisphere could have been used in conjunction with the wheel in the northern hemisphere is striking. A book well worth reading if you are interested in world history (and prehistory). "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Ad Samad | 1/25/2014

    " This is one of the most important book i've ever read. I hope my children will read this. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Krystyn Tully | 1/17/2014

    " Didn't love it and didn't find it that well-researched. I think the hype comes from an interesting premise. Disappointed in the final result. "

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