The Cambridge World History: Volume 1, Introducing World History, to 10,000 BCE

The Cambridge World History: Volume 1, Introducing World History, to 10,000 BCE

by David Christian (Editor)


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Volume 1 of the Cambridge World History is an introduction to both the discipline of world history and the earliest phases of world history up to 10,000 BCE. In Part I leading scholars outline the approaches, methods, and themes that have shaped and defined world history scholarship across the world and right up to the present day. Chapters examine the historiographical development of the field globally, periodisation, divergence and convergence, belief and knowledge, technology and innovation, family, gender, anthropology, migration, and fire. Part II surveys the vast Palaeolithic era, which laid the foundations for human history, concentrating on the most recent phases of hominin evolution, the rise of Homo sapiens and the very earliest human societies through to the end of the last ice age. Anthropologists, archaeologists, historical linguists and historians examine climate and tools, language, and culture, as well as offering regional perspectives from across the world.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781108406420
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 11/09/2017
Series: The Cambridge World History , #1
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 496
Sales rank: 962,411
Product dimensions: 5.63(w) x 8.86(h) x 0.94(d)

About the Author

David Christian is by training a historian of Russia and the Soviet Union. He taught Russian and Soviet History at Macquarie University in Sydney, and conducted research on the diets of the nineteenth-century Russian peasantry and in particular on the role of vodka in Russian society and fiscal systems. In 1989 he began teaching a history course surveying the history of the Universe and placing human history within that larger context. This approach has since come to be known as 'big history', and it led to an increasing interest in world history, particularly in world history at very large scales. David Christian is the author of Maps of Time: An Introduction to Big History (2011), and co-founder with Bill Gates of the Big History Project (, which has created a free online big history course for high school students. He is currently completing the second volume of a synoptic history of Inner Eurasia, the lands at the heart of the Eurasian landmass, from prehistory to the present day.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction and overview David Christian; Part I. Historiography, Method, and Themes: 2. Writing world history Marnie Hughes-Warrington; 3. The evolution of world histories Dominic Sachsenmaier; 4. Evolution, rupture and periodisation Michael Lang; 5. From divergence to convergence: centrifugal and centripetal forces in history David Northrup; 6. Belief, knowledge and language Luke Clossey; 7. Historiography of technology and innovation Daniel Headrick; 8. Fire and fuel in human history Johan Goudsblom; 9. Family history and world history: from domestication to biopolitics Mary Jo Maynes and Ann Waltner; 10. Gendered world history Merry Wiesner-Hanks; 11. What does anthropology contribute to world history? Jack Goody; 12. Migration in human history Pat Manning; Part II. The Palaeolithic and the Beginnings of Human History: 13. Before the farmers: culture and climate from the emergence of homo sapiens to about ten thousand years ago Felipe Fernandez-Arnesto; 14. Early humans: tools, language and culture Christopher Ehret; 15. Africa from 48,000 to 9600 BCE Christopher Ehret; 16. Migration and innovation in Palaeolithic Europe John Hoffecker; 17. Asian Palaeolithic dispersals Robin Dennell; 18. The Pleistocene colonisation and occupation of Australasia Peter Hiscock; 19. The Pleistocene colonisation and occupation of the Americas Nicole M. Waguespack.

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