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Additional Book Discussions > 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus

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message 1: by Leonardo (last edited Aug 28, 2013 12:41PM) (new)

Leonardo Noto (leonardonoto) | 113 comments I started reading this fascinating book two days ago and I highly recommend it for anyone who is interested in the evolution of human societies and/or in archaeology. The book explores Native American civilizations and there rather profound impact on the environment before 1491 (1492 = the year of the arrival of Columbus).


1491 New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus by Charles C. Mann
1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus

Charles C. Mann
Charles C. Mann


message 2: by Betsy, co-mod (new)

Betsy | 1669 comments Mod
Leonardo, we read that book as a monthly group read in January of 2011. Here is the thread where it was discussed:

http://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/4...

I wasn't very involved with the group back then and disn't read it, but it's on my To-Read list or on my Maybe list, can't remember which. It definitely sounds fascinating.


message 3: by Leonardo (new)

Leonardo Noto (leonardonoto) | 113 comments Oops, I should have searched for it first. Thanks for pointing that out, Betsy. It's one of the better books that I've read in a long time (I also have a giant stack of TBR books in a closet in my house!).

Leo


message 4: by Tom (new)

Tom | 2 comments Both 1491 and the follow up 1493 were very good. So was Guns, Germs and Steel in that genre.


message 5: by David (new)

David Rubenstein | 873 comments Mod
I read both 1491 and 1493. Both are excellent--I liked 1491 a little better. Lots of fascinating--and sometimes surprising--insights into a topic that doesn't get much press.


message 6: by Leonardo (new)

Leonardo Noto (leonardonoto) | 113 comments The sequel to Guns, Germs and Steel is also great -- "The World Until Yesterday" by Jared Diamond.

The World Until Yesterday What Can We Learn from Traditional Societies? by Jared Diamond


message 7: by Graham (new)

Graham | 5 comments I've heard good things about Collapse by Jared Diamond. I think it was published sometime between 'Guns, Germs and Steel' and 'The World Until Yesterday".

Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed


message 8: by Leonardo (new)

Leonardo Noto (leonardonoto) | 113 comments I'll have to check that one out -- just what I need, to keep adding things to the "Leaning Tower of Leo" (my TBR pile)!


message 9: by Steve (new)

Steve Van Slyke (steve_van_slyke) | 372 comments Yes, Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed is every bit as good as Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies.

I haven't yet read The World Until Yesterday: What Can We Learn from Traditional Societies?...have heard mixed reviews.

I recently read Before the Dawn: Recovering the Lost History of Our Ancestors by Nicholas Wade, which some reviewers have said takes issued with Diamonds theory that geography and agriculture were what determined where the first settled communities and civilizations arose. I didn't see it that way. Wade proposes that settlement occurred before agriculture or animal domestication, but he doesn't argue with Diamond on where they first settled or why--the abundance of easily domesticated plants and animals.


message 10: by Tom (new)

Tom | 2 comments I enjoyed The World Until Yesterday, but I'm a big fan of Diamond.


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