Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Origins of the Modern World: A Global and Ecological Narrative

Robert Marks

Doesn’t go as far with the main premise as it could, or indeed as the author seems to think he did. Fundamentally this is a work too slim and too general to really deliver the force of ecohistory promised in the main argument, and to an extent it runs into similar tension of the McNeil work of beign uncertain who the history is marketed towards. That notwitstanding there is a lot of value in here, and the focus on human history as told through impact on the environment, diffusion of diseases and overall ecological processes is a compelling standpoint. In particular the definition of an "ecological ancient regime" to the planet and the way it was shifted by trade, travel and more direct material control over the environment is a compellin gone.

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