The book Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond attempts to answer the question, “Why is it that you white people developed so much cargo and brought it to New Guinea, but we black people had so little cargo of our own?” This question was asked by Yali, a New Guinean politician talking to Jared Diamond. Jared Diamond answers this question by analyzing the development of civilization across the globe, from the deserts of Africa to the woodlands of North America. Each of these civilizations progressed in different ways, some slower than others. Mr. Diamond shows how different aspects of society were developed in different parts of the world, like how 13 large mammals were domesticated in Eurasia, but none were domesticated in Sub-Saharan Africa or Australia. These small details end up compiling together to explain exactly why different societies developed so differently. The author uses clear ideas and thoughts to explain the course of history. He systematically explores different pieces of human development, from domesticating plants and animals to creating different types of weapons. There is a certain need for this book because no one had set out to answer this question before, even though many have asked it in different ways. Scholars had always been arguing about the development of civilizations, and having one book compile information from hundreds of sources allows for a distinct answer. The author used many different types of graphs to help explain his reasoning. His thesis is that certain conditions allowed certain civilizations to develop technology and weapons more than others, allowing them to conquer other civilizations. In his words: “Technology, in the form of weapons and transport, provides the direct means by which certain peoples have expanded their realms and conquered other peoples.”
Jared Diamond uses a variety of resources to answer Yali’s question. He uses radio carbon evidence to show when and where certain plants or animals were...
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