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Diamond's book is excellent, but he seems to start out with a pre-set conclusion and omits information that contradicts his position. For instance, he doesn't mention that people become somewhat genetically adapted to their environment through natural selection.

And more recent research by geneticists such as Bruce Lahn, Eric Wang, Scott Williamson and Benjamin Voight, in fact confirms that genetic changes actually accelerated about 10,000 years ago at the time agriculture intensified and populations in Asia and Europe expanded rapidly.

(see for example: http://www.nytimes.com/2005/09/09/science/09brain.html?pagewanted=print)

More recent books like 'Before the Dawn' by New York Times science reporter Nicholas Wade or 'The 10,000 Year Explosion: How Civilization Accelerated Human Evolution' by Harpending and Cochran build on Diamond's book in this respect.

There was actually an article just a week or so ago in the New York Times discussing how culture influenced natural selection.


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