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Sapiens: Book Review

Updated: 5 days ago

Original Article was published in my Medium Page

My Personal Thoughts on the Book ‘Sapiens’ written by Yuval Noah Harari

The book ‘Sapiens’ is written by Yuval Noah Harari. It’s a very extensive book on the history of human kind. It tells us a lot about the history of us, the Homo sapiens. Anyone reading this book will find oneself reading about things which dates back to 3, 00,000 years! The author mentions that about 70,000 years ago, organisms belonging to the species Homo sapiens started to form, from elaborate structures called cultures.

In subsequent pages the author takes us back to 3.8 billion years, when the emergence of organisms occurred and thus started the beginning of biology. In the later part of the book, the author gives a very good idea on the concept of money in ‘The scent of money’ chapter. Through his writings he brought in front of us the good as well as the bad of money. He mentions in his book that money has always tried to break through these barriers like water seeping through cracks in a dam. Through his writings, he showed the dark side of usage of money, right from the prehistoric times. He also mentioned in his book the agricultural revolution and how the crops like wheat utilized us i.e Homo sapiens! The interesting question he asked is, how did wheat convince the Homo sapiens to exchange a rather good life for a more miserable existence? What did it offer in return?

As per Yuval Noah Harari, wheat did not give people economic security. The life of a peasant is less secure than that of a hunter gatherer, he mentioned. He further added that foragers relied on dozens of species to survive and could therefore weather difficult years even without stocks of preserved food. He also spoke about the unification of mankind and at last he spoke on the scientific revolution and the art of happiness. In one of the chapters he mentioned that people who have health, diet and wealth may be happy, but is always not so. He further added that people assumed, if individuals were richer and healthier, then they must also be happier. But was it so, was his next question.

This book not only gives us an extensive idea through facts about the origin of human species but also, how it slowly dominated the globe. Homo sapiens are now also researching on artificial intelligence and sometimes trying to bypass natural selection. I found this book very interesting though it took almost one and a half months of time to complete reading the book. It has huge amount of facts and data to understand about the conquest of Homo sapiens over other species, the Cognitive revolution, the green revolution, the unification of humankind and finally the scientific revolution.

If I have to rate the book on 10 Stars and 10 being the highest, I will give the book 9 Stars. An excellent book to enrich one’s knowledge on our history, which I personally feel.

Thanks for visiting the Book Review website:

Thanks and Regards:

Mainakk Majumdar, Book Critic

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