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1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus

di Charles C. Mann

Altri autori: Vedi la sezione altri autori.

UtentiRecensioniPopolaritàMedia votiConversazioni / Citazioni
6,3661781,260 (4.16)1 / 264
Mann shows how a new generation of researchers equipped with novel scientific techniques have come to previously unheard-of conclusions about the Americas before the arrival of the Europeans: In 1491 there were probably more people living in the Americas than in Europe. Certain cities--such as Tenochtitlán, the Aztec capital--were greater in population than any European city. Tenochtitlán, unlike any capital in Europe at that time, had running water, beautiful botanical gardens, and immaculately clean streets. The earliest cities in the Western Hemisphere were thriving before the Egyptians built the great pyramids. Native Americans transformed their land so completely that Europeans arrived in a hemisphere already massively "landscaped" by human beings. Pre-Columbian Indians in Mexico developed corn by a breeding process that the journal Science recently described as "man's first, and perhaps the greatest, feat of genetic engineering."--From publisher description.… (altro)
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» Vedi le 264 citazioni

Inglese (173)  Francese (2)  Finlandese (1)  Spagnolo (1)  Olandese (1)  Tutte le lingue (178)
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Insightful!
  RonSchulz | Jun 24, 2022 |
True confession? I have a rather large obsession with pre-history land masses. "Pre-history" meaning: before being found by "civilized" white folks. My obession started in Washington State and checking out glacial mounds there, fasicnating. Living in Louisiana and checking out Poverty Point, not realizing from this book that there was an even larger one closer to me.... Living in Illinois and dragging my family to Cahokia Mound by the Mississippi River. Traveling to Ireland to check out Newgrange. I do have it rather bad. Then this book mentions SO. MANY. MORE! I must admit I skimmed the first parts as they were more in South and Central America, but boy do I want to go to Belize even more now! Then, the chapters about North America, and it was right where I have been before. So exciting! I just love this stuff and really try to hold in the urge to recreate these things in my backyard but it is getting harder to do that. Anyway....I won't recommend this book to any of my friends because they will think I am crazier than I am. But, if any friends read this review and have their interests piqued, please let me know. :) ( )
  BarbF410 | May 22, 2022 |
A super interesting and in-depth look at the 2 American continents before they were colonized. The author brings a lot of new information suggesting the civilizations were much more abundant and advanced then thought. It is a very insight read and a new way to look at history at this part of the world. I highly recommend it. ( )
  renbedell | Apr 17, 2022 |
There was a lot of new information for me to chew. If Charles Mann had just stuck with what happen in the Americas before Columbus I would not have suffered any mental indigestion. But he inserts his own experiences, way to long descriptions of researchers and their quarrels, and references to Eurasian ancient history.
I admire Mann's premise of setting the record straight about human presence in the Americas before Columbus. It is certainly necessary that the larger public gets educated on this subject. A less complex text would have helped a great deal. ( )
  Marietje.Halbertsma | Jan 9, 2022 |
fascinating book about the pre-columbus western hemisphere

a much more populous and advanced set of societies than i learned about as a kid ( )
  austinburns | Dec 16, 2021 |
Mann has written an impressive and highly readable book. Even though one can disagree with some of his inferences from the data, he does give both sides of the most important arguments. 1491 is a fitting tribute to those Indians, present and past, whose cause he is championing.
 
Mann has chronicled an important shift in our vision of world development, one our young children could end up studying in their textbooks when they reach junior high.

 
Mann does not present his thesis as an argument for unrestrained development. It is an argument, though, for human management of natural lands and against what he calls the "ecological nihilism" of insisting that forests be wholly untouched.
 
Mann's style is journalistic, employing the vivid (and sometimes mixed) metaphors of popular science writing: "Peru is the cow-catcher on the train of continental drift. . . . its coastline hits the ocean floor and crumples up like a carpet shoved into a chairleg." Similarly, the book is not a comprehensive history, but a series of reporter's tales: He describes personal encounters with scientists in their labs, archaeologists at their digs, historians in their studies and Indian activists in their frustrations. Readers vicariously share Mann's exposure to fire ants and the tension as his guide's plane runs low on fuel over Mayan ruins. These episodes introduce readers to the debates between older and newer scholars. Initially fresh, the journalistic approach eventually falters as his disorganized narrative rambles forward and backward through the centuries and across vast continents and back again, producing repetition and contradiction. The resulting blur unwittingly conveys a new sort of the old timelessness that Mann so wisely wishes to defeat.
 

» Aggiungi altri autori (21 potenziali)

Nome dell'autoreRuoloTipo di autoreOpera?Stato
Charles C. Mannautore primariotutte le edizionicalcolato
Boraso, MarinaTraductionautore secondarioalcune edizioniconfermato
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Preface: The seeds of this book date back, at least in part, to 1983, when I wrote an article for 'Science' about a NASA program that was monitoring atmospheric ozone levels.
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Mann shows how a new generation of researchers equipped with novel scientific techniques have come to previously unheard-of conclusions about the Americas before the arrival of the Europeans: In 1491 there were probably more people living in the Americas than in Europe. Certain cities--such as Tenochtitlán, the Aztec capital--were greater in population than any European city. Tenochtitlán, unlike any capital in Europe at that time, had running water, beautiful botanical gardens, and immaculately clean streets. The earliest cities in the Western Hemisphere were thriving before the Egyptians built the great pyramids. Native Americans transformed their land so completely that Europeans arrived in a hemisphere already massively "landscaped" by human beings. Pre-Columbian Indians in Mexico developed corn by a breeding process that the journal Science recently described as "man's first, and perhaps the greatest, feat of genetic engineering."--From publisher description.

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