by James C. Scott 

An Economist Best History Book 2017

“History as it should be written.”—Barry Cunliffe, Guardian

“Scott hits the nail squarely on the head by exposing the staggering price our ancestors paid for civilization and political order.”—Walter Scheidel, Financial Times

Why did humans abandon hunting and gathering for sedentary communities dependent on livestock and cereal grains, and governed by precursors of today’s states? Most people believe that plant and animal domestication allowed humans, finally, to settle down and form agricultural villages, towns, and states, which made possible civilization, law, public

Interview with the Author

New Books Network
James C. Scott, “Against the Grain: A Deep History of the Earliest States”
6/4/20      53 min

Podcast Art of the History Extra PodcastHistory Extra
The origins of civilization
12/18/17         37 min

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