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How four tools enabled humanity to control its destiny
What enabled us to go from simple stone tools to smartphones? How did bands of hunter-gatherers evolve into multinational empires? Listeners of Sapiens will say a cognitive revolution - a dramatic evolutionary change that altered our brains, turning primitive humans into modern ones - caused a cultural explosion. In Transcendence, Gaia Vince argues instead that modern humans are the product of a nuanced coevolution of our genes, environment, and culture that goes back into deep time. She explains how, through four key elements - fire, language, beauty, and time - our species diverged from the evolutionary path of all other animals, unleashing a compounding process that launched us into the Space Age and beyond. Provocative and poetic, Transcendence shows how a primate took dominion over nature and turned itself into something marvelous.
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- Kurt Leyendecker
Far too much bias and unsupported conclusions
This is a thought provoking book; however, from the very beginning a was concerned that the author was drawing unsupported conclusions from the studies and research she sighted. This in and of itself did not challenge the veracity of the conclusions but did little to support them either. In the end (literally, the last 10% of the book), Gaia unleashed her abject hate of conservatives serving up ridiculous assertions based on cherry picked research that supported her viewpoint. Very disappointing - this could have been a great book, but now I find myself wondering whether much of her assertions throughout the first 90% are equally suspect.
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Very informative, and coherent. Easy on the reader, while still being entertaining enough to effortlessly hold interest.