Government, Centralization, and the State Technology and Creativity Summary Analysis In the last 13, years or so, human history has proceeded in many different directions. Jared Diamond, the author of the book, has spent most of his career trying to understand why different human civilizations developed in different ways. The book will try to determine why certain societies became powerful and dominant on the global stage, while others did not.
Diamond tries to answer this question through his patented mixture of environmental determinism and sociobiology. It amounts to saying that global inequality is based on the luck of the draw.
This is from their introduction: Human beings evolved and eventually dispersed themselves throughout the earth. There were some who lived in geographical areas conducive to the development of agriculture and the domestication of animals, complex processes that were in no way beyond the intellectual capacities of any human group.
All people everywhere were equally intelligent, and members of any group, living in appropriate areas, would have developed agriculture and domesticated animals. However, once certain people did develop agriculture and domesticate animals, they had distinct evolutionary advantages deriving from the population expansion these new forms of food production allowed: And significantly, the more people there were, the more necessary arable land became and the more likely people were to go to war to get it.
Warfare, in turn, brought about the need for effective weaponry. Therefore, over time, those with certain mineral resources and with skilled craft specialists fashioned and employed superior weapons eventually made of steel to vanquish their neighbors.
Moreover, those who could utilize metal and support craft specialists had other advantages as well. First, as agriculturalists with high population densities, they had developed hierarchically organized social organizations. Second, as people living around others and around animals, they had developed immunities to certain germs.
Superior weapons and organizational skills technologies and techniquesalong with immunological resistances, enabled such groups, or apparently impelled them, to em-hark on ambitious programs of expansion, leading, repeatedly, to the conquest anc[ exploitation of others.
Especially vulnerable were those geographically cut off from such centers of innovation. Thus, eventually and inevitably, the native peoples of the New World and elsewhere were easily subjugated by a combination of guns, germs, and steel.
Rather, we learn that Yali was poor and relatively powerless in his own domain because his ancestors lacked access to the mineral resources, domesticable animals, and the other advantages that allowed some to conquer others. He was born, in terms of the luck-of-the-environmental draw, on the wrong side of the great geographical divide.
Such an answer would strike them as a perverse justification of colonial forms of inequality, part of a narrative that denied them moral worth in the past, to say nothing of the future. Indeed, as we shall soon see, the founding and development of RSL became part of a pressing narrative for reclaiming rightful worth in Papua New Guinea.
This ideology supports the status quo, the interests of the already powerful. For all of them, in other words, the inevitable and the inexorable are handily synonymous with the interests of the haves over the have-nots.
In fact, he sent copies of Guns, Germs, and Steel to members of the faculty as a model of the kind of book he admired.
All over the United States, we learned, deans and presidents of other pricey institutions applaud the book. At Cornell, it became assigned reading for all freshmen.
Moreover, many institutions pay Diamond generously to summarize his views in person, generally in packed lecture halls. We think educated haves like the book so well because it resonates deeply with their own concerns—in effect, because it so readily sustains them.
They come away from the book or lecture feeling pretty good about themselves—both enlightened and open-minded. They come away seeing the world without racial prejudice and having learned some important new facts and connections. Furthermore, and significantly, they come away comfortably convinced that they have their cargo unlike Yali and his people for inevitable and impersonal geographic reasons.
No one is to blame for the fact that some people are, and no doubt will continue to be, the haves and that others are, and will continue to be, the have-nots.
It is, as well, both retrospective and prospective. His depiction of the past provides a far from disinterested model for understanding the present and for shaping the future.
This is to say, he presents the world as one in which the have-nots, whether in Papua New Guinea or elsewhere, must seemingly forever deal with the haves under conditions of fundamental disadvantage.
But what exactly is wrong with this history? Must a history necessarily be disqualified because it conveys the perspectives and interests of the victors, of the haves? We certainly do not deny that certain forms of power had a significant role in effecting the kinds of historical events that Diamond delineates.
What we do challenge is his conflation of the necessary with the sufficient. This is to say, just because guns, germs, and steel were necessary to make certain historical outcomes possible, including those so upsetting to Yali, we do not have to assume that their possession was sufficient to explain these outcomes, lust because sources of power are available, we cannot conclude that the power will be used for certain ends, or even that it will be used at all.This question was posed by a local politician named Yali to Jared Diamond in the early s.
25 years later Diamond wrote Guns, Germs, and Steel to answer this question. Diamond seeks to understand why certain societies developed and grow to dominate other societies that are more stagnant.
Yali's direct question spurred Jared Diamond to research and write his fascinating study of the reasons behind varying development around the globe. Guns, Germs, and Steel Book Summary. Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies (also titled Guns, Germs and Steel: A short history of everybody for the last 13, years) is a transdisciplinary non-fiction book by Jared Diamond, professor of geography and physiology at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).
Jared Diamond has done a huge disservice to the telling of human history, distorting the role of domestication and agriculture in "Guns, Germs, and Steel." Jared Diamond has done a huge disservice to the telling of human history, distorting the role of domestication and agriculture in Guns Germs and Steel.
Yali's question is Why do white men have so much cargo and we New Guineans have so little? the answer is Geological differences causing different types of germs and also by luck, it was luck that. Guns, Germs, and Steel Analysis “Why is it that you white people developed so much cargo and and Steel features the work of the author Jared Diamond.
In his book, he mentions his answer to how different human societies became so diverse. Yurkiw Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies Jared Diamond W.