Guns Germs And Steel Critical Analysis

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The acclaimed award-winning Guns, Germs, and Steel first came to my attention during the 2012 presidential election, when Mitt Romney cited it as one of the main influences in his foreign policy thinking. Not the most delightful of recommendations - for the next three years, it was a book consistently brought up in class, but forever blighted in my mind. Flash-forward to this course, and upon seeing “Yali’s Question” listed in our assigned readings, I sighed, gritted my teeth, and began reading, determined to keep an open mind. What a relief to find that Jared Diamond exceeded my expectations. His posit that geography is the main source of inequalities between nations in our world is a unique, yet uneven one. Though seemingly a proficient study of the role geography has played in course of human history, Diamond’s refusal to view world events from any other disciplinary perspective – specifically cultural anthropology and sociology - dramatically weakens his argument.…show more content…
He is so focused on the HOW – how Europeans were able to conquer other civilizations – that he completely disregards the initial WHY of his question, a question I would read as – why they were so compelled to do so? What about European culture pushed for such a large scale conquering movement? It’s certainly possible that Diamond addresses these questions at some point in his book past this prologue, but I see them as central to the narrative, not just side-note. All the guns and steel in the world mean nothing unless they were in a position to use them against someone, which they would not be without the proper motivations. This can best be answered through a cultural

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