Thursday, January 17, 2013
Davis on Diamond
Wade Davis is an anthropologist well-known for his accessible and thoughtful writing on how anthropology relates to all kinds of issues within the modern world. He is affiliated with the National Geographic Society (keeping him well supplied with breathtaking photographs), and keeps a busy schedule of public lectures across the USA and around the world. His review of Jared Diamond's new book is published in the Guardian. I haven't read Diamond's new book yet, but his work raises important questions about the relationships between geography, history and culture, that anthropologists ought to have opinions about. I think that Davis lays out some of the basics of these issues in the review, and demonstrates why many anthropologists (including myself) are uneasy with the conclusions that Diamond draws.