Germs, Genes, & Civilization: How Epidemics Shaped Who We Are Today

Germs Genes Civilization How Epidemics Shaped Who We Are Today In Germs Genes and Civilization Dr David Clark tells the story of the microbe driven epidemics that have repeatedly molded our human destinies You ll discover how your genes have been shaped through

  • Title: Germs, Genes, & Civilization: How Epidemics Shaped Who We Are Today
  • Author: David P. Clark
  • ISBN: 9780137019960
  • Page: 179
  • Format: Hardcover
  • In Germs, Genes and Civilization, Dr David Clark tells the story of the microbe driven epidemics that have repeatedly molded our human destinies You ll discover how your genes have been shaped through millennia spent battling against infectious diseases You ll learn how epidemics have transformed human history, over and over again, from ancient Egypt to Mexico, the RomaIn Germs, Genes and Civilization, Dr David Clark tells the story of the microbe driven epidemics that have repeatedly molded our human destinies You ll discover how your genes have been shaped through millennia spent battling against infectious diseases You ll learn how epidemics have transformed human history, over and over again, from ancient Egypt to Mexico, the Romans to Attila the Hun You ll learn how the Black Death epidemic ended the Middle Ages, making possible the Renaissance, western democracy, and the scientific revolution Clark demonstrates how epidemics have repeatedly shaped not just our health and genetics, but also our history, culture, and politics You ll even learn how they may influence religion and ethics, including the ways they may help trigger cultural cycles of puritanism and promiscuity Perhaps most fascinating of all, Clark reveals the latest scientific and philosophical insights into the interplay between microbes, humans, and society and previews what just might come next.

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      Published :2019-09-10T18:03:36+00:00

    About "David P. Clark"

    1. David P. Clark

      David Clark was born in June 1952 in Croydon, a London suburb After winning a scholarship to Christ s College, Cambridge, he received his B.A in 1973 In 1977 got his PhD from Bristol University for work on antibiotic resistance He then left England for postdoctoral research at Yale and then the University of Illinois He joined the faculty of Southern Illinois University in 1981 and is now a professor in the Microbiology Department In 1991 he visited Sheffield University, England as a Royal Society Guest Research Fellow His research into the genetics and regulation of bacterial fermentation has been funded by the U.S Department of Energy from 1982 till 2007 He has published over 70 articles in scientific journals and graduated over 20 master s and PhD students He is unmarried and lives with two cats, Little George, who is orange and Ralph who is mostly black and eats cardboard He is the author of Molecular Biology Made Simple and Fun, now in its third edition, as well as three serious textbooks.

    838 thoughts on “Germs, Genes, & Civilization: How Epidemics Shaped Who We Are Today”

    1. I give up. There's some good stuff here, but there's too much repetition. And there's some weird, annoying stuff too. Like the residents have called their city Istanbul for more than 600 years, so why would you call it Constantinople? There's the conflation of hygiene and sanitation throughout, so that he's describing poor sewage facilities but it sounds as if he's blaming individuals for being "dirty". There's casual sexism that doesn't need to be in there, certainly not without examination, an [...]


    2. historicalreadingsThis is very informative but I took issue with certain passages such as this:“The great age of hygiene lasted from roughly 1850 to 1950. The front-line troops in the battle for cleanliness were mostly women. Since the 1950s, women have gradually abandoned the home and ventured forth to find external employment. Hygiene standards in the home have inevitably relaxed. Houses are cleaned less often, laundry is done less often, and both are done less thoroughly. Despite the outbre [...]


    3. This book is a fascinating and sometimes humorous look at how disease has changed humans both biologically and socially. The history of the world is brief, but informative. This book is best enjoyed if you have some knowledge of world history and disease, especially since many disease discussed are a bit obscure or irrelevant today.I am not one to highlight books, but this book has so many great passages that I made great use of my Kindle's highlight function with this one. Some of my favorite p [...]


    4. This book had some interesting factoids but was very repetitive and extremely disorganized. It didn't break any new ground and the sections on AIDS and religion were rife with illogical conjectures. If I hadn't been reading it on a Kindle I would have thrown the book across the room. The first half or so I gave 3 stars, the last quarter 1 star. I'm averaging it out to a 2 but I would not recommend this book to anyone.


    5. Quite enjoyed this. It's popular science at its finest, and as such can be a bit glib at times, but it points out several compelling truths about the relationship between the human race and the smallest living things. Mr Clark sounds a few interesting warnings, though since I was already inclined to agree with his positions before reading this book, I have not had my worldview altered. Here's hoping those who come from a different perspective take heed of what he says, though.


    6. Currently reading this book. I am only about halfway through but am finding it fascinating. Of course, the fact that I was a microbiology major has nothing to do with my interest level! The content is quite dry but the author draws very interesting conclusions about the impact of disease on all of human history.


    7. Ótima perspectiva sobre como nossos genes foram moldados por várias epidemias e como as dinâmicas populacionais antigas batem com o ciclo de surtos epidêmicos. Grandes cidades cheias de gente que fica doente e repovoadas pelos sobreviventes, que depois podem se defender de atacantes justamente com esses patógenos. O que explica muitos dos eventos de primogênitos mortos e povos punidos por deuses.


    8. I should have listened to the other reviewers and not even started this book, as it was a complete waste of time. I got to p.21, when I read a paragraph with so many unrelated sentences and implausible connections, that even after reading it FIVE times, it still made no sense.Just goes to show that just because you're smart and can write, doesn't mean you should publish a book. This scientist should stick to scientific journals, and leave books to the story-tellers.


    9. Нудновато как для научпопа, несколько уже устаревшая информация, но тем не менее довольно интересное чтение.Нудноватость, в основном, выражается в часто повторяющихся, практически идентично высказанных кусочков текста. От фразы до поч небольшого абзаца.Создается впечатл [...]


    10. The role of viruses, bacteria and infectious diseases on human evolutionThis is an excellent review of various infectious diseases that have shaped the history of human beings. Many cultures and the whole populations were impacted from the very beginning of our civilization or perhaps when Homo sapiens set foot on this planet. The author gives specific examples in our history and describes how diseases have played a role in the eventual determination of who we are today. One could see disease-ca [...]


    11. This, The Stand & 100 Years of Solitude are my three eternally mired-down in books so it's a triumph that I finished this; I'm proud and worked hard to get here! Basically this should have been a 4 star book, a book about how bacteria and viruses have been the root cause and catalyst of so much of humanity's history. The author knows his stuff, has tons of interesting things to share and it ended well, and provided great info & references at the end. But oh my gosh it was repetitive & [...]


    12. "Germs, Genes and Civilization" is a fascinating, thought-provoking survey of "how epidemics shaped who we are today" (in the words of the subtitle). This "shaping" happens on two levels: first, bacteria, viruses, prions, fungi and other sources of nasty epidemics change the human population itself, right down to the genes we carry today. Diseases like tuberculosis, influenza, measles and even smallpox became much less virulent over time. The people who were vulnerable to the diseases died witho [...]


    13. The book Genes, Germs and Civilzation by David Clark is an in depth look at how the diseases and illnesses of our past and present have shaped our lives in most aspects. Overall it was a fairly interesting look into how disease and illness has actually shaped our lives over the course of our history. I originally picked this up because it was free on for the kindle and knowing it was a high priced book otherwise I took the chance one it. I'm glad I did. There are a lot of things included that I [...]


    14. Review of “Germs, Genes and Civilization” by David P. Clark available from .David has prepared an exhaustive study of the impact of disease on society and culture. He has provided clear and verifiable answers to many mysteries which have confounded historians and scientists in other disciplines. One of my favorites of these answers is an explanation for Attila the Hun's sudden decision not to attack Rome when it appeared he could easily have taken it.Detailed discussions of the impact of epi [...]


    15. I consider finishing this book my own personal triumph. It took me over 6 months to read. The first quarter of the book was interesting, fluid, and informative. The last three quarters were repetitive, disorganized, and clearly slanted towards atheism. While I whole-heartedly believe in every individuals right to believe in any religion or lack of religion they choose, I do not think it was necessary for a book about disease and bacteria. The organization of the information in this book was mind [...]


    16. This was an interesting book, looking at the effect of infections on civilisation and our genetic background. Discussing a multitude of plagues, both epidemic and pandemic, throughout history the author gave some novel (at least to me) views on the effect of them including the effect on the Black Death on technological advances and that of diseases on religious belief through the ages. The author also looked at the effect of disease on armies, invasions and war.I have to admit, I disagreed with [...]


    17. David Clark is a professor of Microbiology at Southern Illinois University. And he has written a literate, accessible volume on the interaction of genes, germs, and civilization. One early example: Rome was a huge, teeming city where disease took a toll on residents. On the other hand, many dies from these diseases. On the other hand, over time, they developed resistance to the germs that they had been subjected to. So, when "barbarians" like the Huns approached, from rural backgrounds where dis [...]


    18. This was an excellent book. It's well written for the lay person. Anyone who's taken high school biology, or even just 7th grade life sciences, will have no problems understanding the biological aspects of this book. It makes for a nice companion to Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies in explaining how societies have been affected by the germs they've been exposed to. It's not terribly long, but it's broken up into sub-chapters every couple of pages. The table of contents is lon [...]


    19. Not bad. I agree with his premise that historians do not credit epidemics and plagues enough for the shaping of civilization. However, he does display a massive ignorance of pre-christian religions and their beliefs (hint: just about every religion ever includes a belief in the afterlife). The science sounds good, but I'm not an epidemiologist, so take that with a grain of salt. Overall, it was fairly engaging and interesting read. I had not really considered how long some of these diseases hung [...]


    20. This ebook was free from Barnes and Noble when I downloaded it to my Nook library. I don't recommend any reader spend money to read it because it repeats facts without showing the connection to the MANY premises the author has. The book becomes repetitive and boring. I did like the four stages of response by political establishment:1. The problem does not exist.2. The problem is extremely rare, and in any case, is declining. There are more important things to worry about.3. The problem has been [...]


    21. Germs, Genes, & Civilization was an ok read. It was free on the Nook; I would have felt cheated if I had spent money on it, because the book just does not deliver on its premise.Overall, the book was very uneven. It was repetitious, the frequent digressions into evangelical atheism were annoying (Dawkins's influence in particular was VERY OBVIOUS), and I would have liked a lot more detailed discussion of the biological aspects. I felt that many of the passages dealing with biology were shall [...]


    22. A really interesting and informative insight into how disease is spread, and the fact that many diseases are actually quite modern occurrences. It gives a brief explanation of how the diseases formed without the overly scientific, technical terms that often make books difficult to understand. It didn’t focus too much on one specific country or continent, or on specific diseases, giving detailed case studies on the spread of things such as AIDs and TB. I also liked the fact is discussed the typ [...]


    23. This was a very, very informative book. I enjoyed the historical references, although some of it did make me yawn a little (I guess history isn't really my thing).I was really interested in the beginning but toward the ending, I felt that I couldn't read about China, malaria, Rome, bubonic plague, AIDS, Africa, and dysentery ANYMORE. I recommend this for a microbiology major or a germ aficionado. Also, I felt that Clark kept implying that the time is ripe for an epidemicnd of scary.


    24. David Clark presented some fascinating ideas regarding the relationship between germs, genes, and human culture. Historians have begun paying more attention to the role epidemics have played in the course of human history. This book aimed to look at the interplay of disease, evolution, and history. Unfortunately, the author's point could have been adequately in a paper or essay. The book became repetitive. However, he presented some worthwhile ideas that add another level of complexity to our sp [...]


    25. This book is pretty much about what the title says it is about - the history of humans and the world with respect to microorganisms and viruses. How did these agents affect wars, religion, beliefs and actions of the people at the time? A lot of information is conjecture based on the best history of that particular time period. Overall, I thought this book made a potentially interesting topic boring.


    26. Although I did learn a lot from reading this book, I did not enjoy the writing style that much. Perhaps the author wrote for a different reader, someone who would not read the book merely because it was a free Kindle download. However, I have read many other books that covered similar topics and in some cases, the writing was compelling, to the point that I didn't want the book to end. However, if you just want an overview of this topic, you might find this book educational.


    27. Interesting ideas, but the models are so very simplistic. His writing was also rather repetitive (without adding any new information) and vague, which is somewhat insulting to the reader (you haven't understood my point?! Let me give you the same example 67 times and not actually explain my POV or give good evidence). Pop science. A lot of flash, but nothing really groundbreaking or scientifically testable.


    28. What was that saying? When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. Interesting book. Talks about how deadly diseases affected society, culture, and religion throughout the ages for mankind. A bit Darwinist, some snide comments on religion, and the dismissal of so much deaths was off-putting but I read on.Digged the theory but I wish there were footnotes or endnotes, and more organization.


    29. Reading this book was similar to reading Guns, Gerns and Steel in that I now look at the history of war, disease and mankind completely differently. Although Clark expresses obligatory sympathy for the individual, he makes a case for the benefits of epidemics in clearing the path for the next steps in human society. Before very modern times, battles were decided by whose army succumbed to disease first.


    30. While this is history it's also an overview of the future, so PAY ATTENTION! A good piece of history with many facts; I was very interested in the comparable evolutions. At times, this seems like a separate series of articles, so there is some repetition of events and contexts. Also, there wasn't a single mention of the disease that causes zombies! :) Seriously, a well researched and thoughtful book, not overly technical.


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