Review of The Dawn of Everything from LARB

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Published on: January 27, 2022

Came across this interesting review of book on human history – The Dawn of Everything, A New History of Humanity by Graeber and Wengrow. Recently had read the books from Y. Harari on this topic, which was refreshing. Looks like this could be an interesting book to check on.

Brief summary: “Nevertheless, The Dawn of Everything is a thoroughly mesmerizing book. Its new story about human history is provocative, if not necessarily comprehensive. The book’s great value is that it provides a much better point of departure for future explorations of what was actually happening in the past. There are almost unlimited possibilities here to build upon, and a much more fruitful critical perspective from which to think about human history.”

 

Also has a passage, which summarize the current thinking of human history, a teleological model. ” … Human societies varied a lot. Now they don’t vary as much, but the technology they employ is wildly more complex. People live longer, but they aren’t necessarily healthier or happier during their long lives. The overall average levels of violence may have decreased (although the massive variability in early human societies suggests that “average levels” is not a particularly useful way to think about violence, or really anything else in the archaeological record), but the violence that does happen is more spectacularly destructive. Most importantly: We can now fail on a global scale, and we seem to be in the process of failing.

 

More of this article from LARB here: [The Link]

 

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