THE INVENTION OF YESTERDAY
A 50'000-Year History of Human Culture, Conflict, and Connection
A sweeping global human history that describes the separate beginnings of the world's major cultural movements - Confuscianism, Islam, Judeo-Christianity and Nomadism - and the dramatic, sometimes ruinous, sometimes transformative effects of their ever closer intertwinement that is the defining feature of our world today.
This journey - from vulnerable small groups to a planet-encompassing hive - is the subject of Tamim Ansary's elegant and gripping history. His object is not just to describe the journey, but to illuminate the many essential human qualities that it preserves - our various gods and laws, our rulers and bankers, our philosophers and outcasts, each of which is a continuous presence in the various global cultures. They are the survivors in the human drama, whereas nation states, corporations, policies and political ideas are all susceptible to violent upheaval and dramatic erasure.
Our current moment, Ansary shows, is one of revolutionary reinvention, as old habits are cast aside and reconfigured by the ever more intertwined world we have created. The whole of human history, after all, has been leading up to it.
Tamim Ansary is the author of Destiny Disrupted and Games without Rules, among other books. For ten years he wrote a monthly column for Encarta.com, and has published essays and commentary in the San Francisco Chronicle, Salon, Alternet, TomPaine.com, Edutopia, Parade, Los Angeles Times, and elsewhere. He has appeared on the Oprah Winfrew Show, Bill Moyers, PBS The News Hour, Al Jazeera, and publish radio shows nationwide. Born in Afghanistan in 1948, he moved to the U.S. in 1964. He lives in San Francisco.