Book Review: On Deep History and the Brain by Daniel Lord Smail


Author: Daniel Lord Smail
Title: On Deep History and The Brain
Publication Info: University of California Press (2008)
ISBN: 0520258126

Summary/Review:  Smail’s concept is that there is an artificial divide between pre-history (what he calls deep history) and history and that the biological and evolutionary history of humanity can be better understood by bridging the gap.  At least that’s what I think it was about because unfortunately my brain was too small to grasp much of this book.  For a slender book, Smail did an exhaustive amount of work detailing the idea of when history began through the ages and the time when history “begins” has remained steady even as the reasoning as moved from sacred to scientific. In place of the current paradigm, Smail proposes a neuro-history or a study of the evolution of the human brain.  Interesting stuff even if most of it went over my head.

Rating: **

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