Book Review: "Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind" by Yuval Noah Harari

This New York Times Bestseller has been given praise from Bill Gates, Barack Obama, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Sebastian Junger, Jared Diamond and Dan Ariely. The widely sold book in multiple languages shows a unique perspective on humankind and our rise to modern civil society. The contents comprises of four parts: the cognitive revolution, agricultural revolution, unification of humankind, and scientific revolution. The book discusses the wide spectrum of time that started with matter and energy appearing and the beginning of physics and chemistry to humans in space, nuclear weapons, and intelligent designs.

Mein Kampf: " The person who attempts to fight the iron logic of nature thereby fights the principles he must thank for his life as a human being, To fight against nature is to bring about one's own destruction."


This quotation talks about the rise of power between commerce, empires and their universal spread of religious beliefs. Today, we see people make their decisions on civil society through rationality and collective unity. In the rise of empires, there was only the will of the leader and the collection of followers that made harsh decisions on the regions they conquered to gain resources for their own people. In many ways Dr. Harari explains the gifts of historical revelation and the development of weapons that have changed the ways empires negotiate their new needs for resources. Although, technological advancements were being created, it did not stop the spread of poverty. The Freed parts of humankind were advanced from deprivation of essential resources. Yet, throughout history, societies have suffered from two kinds of poverty: social poverty which was created by the lack of opportunities and biological poverty which puts the lives of people at risk because the lack of food, water and shelter.


Food insecurity is still a major problem in our current world because there are people who starve and live off one USD a day to provide food and water to their families. In many cases these people live a life off the land and they do not associate with civil society in populous cities. These rural tribes have a rule of life and they stick to it. Regardless, it must be up to modern leaders to provide the resources that can make their lives easier and enhance the quality of their lives. It is marked as bad leadership or extremism of modern leaders to ignore the needs of their rural community members. These leaders should make efforts to expand the accessibility of essential resources like food, clean water, and resilient shelter to slums and tribal areas. Dr. Harari makes several points in his writings, stating that mankind was not meant to be loners and selfish people but to be open and constantly interacting with each other.


Dr. Harari describes groups of people that are of the same religion, ethnicity, race, gender, politics, science, and other significant ties. There are relevant necessities that people must have that provide the comfort of cooperating with each other. Several of these needs are common languages, historical relevance, deep cognitive understanding, and collective community agreement. For instance, scientific research can be created with the idea of a religious question or common question that must be answered through scientific methods. The scientific methods are used to keep logical and rational track of each discovery to make a educated guess and determine the common validity of this answer. Human beings mark our everyday challenges by our observations locally and what we know is happening in other places around the world. We progress by the nature of competition, which is innate and explained by Charles Darwin and the survival of the fittest. Yet, human beings only truly progress by community interactions and through the intelligent gaining the resources they needed to make real discoveries.


Dr. Harari explains the modern advancements that were created through the ideology of credit. Empires began exploring new worlds on a bonded credit that their voyage would bring back exotic resources that could be used by the empire that loaned them the money and ships. When human beings first began to map out the world it was because we longed for adventure. Humans began to become more industrialized with the advancements in technologies they discovered.

This book is a new revelation in the human past and present. I highly recommend this book and the new lessons you can learn and apply to any field of work.


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