Cannibals and Kings: The Origins of Culturesby Marvin Harris
In this brilliant and profound study the distinguished American anthropologist Marvin Harris shows how the endless varieties of cultural behavior often so puzzling at first glance can be explained as adaptations to particular ecological conditions. His aim is to account for the evolution of cultural forms as Darwin accounted for the evolution of biological forms: to show how cultures adopt their characteristic forms in response to changing ecological modes.
"[A] magisterial interpretation of the rise and fall of human cultures and societies."
Robert Lekachman, Washington Post Book World
"Its persuasive arguments asserting the primacy of cultural rather than genetic or psychological factors in human life deserve the widest possible audience."
Gloria Levitas The New Leader
"[An] original and...urgent theory about the nature of man and at the reason that human cultures take so many diverse shapes."
The New Yorker
"Lively and controversial."
I. Bernard Cohen, front page, The New York Times Book Review
- Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
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- 1st Vintage Books ed
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