According to the Epilogue of Guns, Germs, and Steel, what are the important factors in the development of civilization?This can be found in the book Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond titled...

According to the Epilogue of Guns, Germs, and Steel, what are the important factors in the development of civilization?

This can be found in the book Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond titled Epilogue

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Beginning on the second page of the Epilogue (page 406 in the paperback edition), Diamond gives a list of four kinds of factors that determine which continents will develop the most complex civilizations.  These factors are all environmental or geographical.  They are:

  • The number of species of plants and animals that can be domesticated in any given area.  The more species, the better for civilization.
  • The chances for diffusion and migration within a continent.  If a continent has a long east-west axis, the chances of diffusion and migration are higher.  This makes the development of civilization more likely to occur.
  • The ease of diffusion between continents.  The easier diffusion is, the more likely civilization is to arise.
  • Total population size.  The more people there are, the more potential inventors of technologies that will lead to more civilization.

These are the factors cited by Diamond in the Epilogue.

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