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Some meandering thoughts on:

Sapiens, Yuval Noah Harari

Posted: 1/7/2021

My dad got me Sapiens from the library while I was home during Christmas time. Getting Library books for other people is one of my dad's principle hobbies. Every time I come home there's a dozen or so waiting for me. Usually I don't find the time to read them but it so happened I was interested in reading the book after listening to some podcasts with Harari. There are definitely some things about Harari that make some of my 'grifter' alarm bells go off, like following up his best seller with a listicle and talking about things like big data and meditation. But in all his interviews he comes across as so earnest and I found Sapiens to be a very interesting and engaging book.

There's a lot of human history so the book is sort of a whirlwind tour. It definitely raises more questions than answers, as any book so ambitious will. Some fun facts I picked up along the way:

Some passages which stuck in my mind:

Overall I love the perspective Yuval gives. Reading the book you get the sense of how strange a world we've all gotten used to. How it all could have gone differently. Maybe some processes are inevitable, but many thing's prevalence seems purely accidental when you consider their origin.