Cover of our textbook 1. Reading: In our textbookLinks to an external site., please read: pp.107-112.

icon for a video or film 3. Please click here to watch Chapters 2-8 of ‘Out of Eden (Episode 1, Guns, Germs, and Steel)Links to an external site..

This c.38 minute segment is part of a series concerning global inequality, which Jared Diamond traces back to the agricultural revolution. As noted on the film’s Website, agriculture’s rise was concentrated in a few locations worldwide initially. Why? “[T]he answer lies in a geographical luck of the draw – what mattered were the raw materials themselves.” People who had the geographic luck to live where there were eligible domesticates (e.g., in the Fertile Crescent) were thus catapulted toward dominance.

This segment concentrates on the processes by and circumstances in which the agricultural revolution happened. We’ll get back to questions relating to global inequality in later modules.

(Optional: Link for final chapters of ‘Out of Eden’ is hereLinks to an external site. [c.5 mins]. Series website is hereLinks to an external site..)

Icon to indicate that you are checking out a webpage or article something similar. Relevance of Evolution: AgricultureLinks to an external site.

Here is a short tutorial from UC Berkeley’s evolution series. It asks (and will help you to answer) the following key questions:

  • How does evolution affect the world’s food supply?
  • How can a lack of genetic variation harm crops?
  • Why is it important to understand the evolutionary history of domestic crops?
  • How do pests evolve to resist pesticides?