Friday reading: from flint to data center, the great History of Humanity

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Books can help us better understand the world around us. Some approach ecological or economic issues, others study it from a historical or philosophical point of view, or even biological. To synthesize all the data of these disciplines seems a titanic work. Yet this is what the author Yuval Noah Harari undertook and this gives 2 bestsellers who question our past and offer us tools to think about the world of tomorrow.

Explore the history of humanity

Before being an internationally recognized author, Yuval Noah Harari is a historian specializing in medieval and military history. Nothing predestined him to become a successful author. It is from one of his courses at the university, which none of his colleagues would take charge, that he writes his most famous work: Sapiens, a brief history of humanity. This book quickly became a bestseller translated into 40 languages. It is now available in audio version.

Harari traces the history of the Stone Age Humanity in Silicon Valley, not from the point of view of a country or religion, but from a truly global perspective. He explains why, according to him, Homo Sapiens has managed to establish itself as a dominant species, not only because of his ability to cooperate effectively with others, but also because of his ability to believe in things that only exist in his imagination: God, money, nations or human rights. He addresses the question of capitalism, which he believes is a form of religion, dares to ask whether progress has really made men happier and questions the future of man with regard to the development of neuroscience and artificial intelligence.

This provocative and daring work provoked many debates and oppositions among the experts of the different fields that the author flies over. However, by creating bridges between different disciplines, Yuval Noah Harari offers a new reading of the past and offers new tools to prepare for the future. The author engages the reader to reflect on the place of man in the world, and even long after he has turned the last page.

To question the future of humanity

One year after the release of sapiens, Harari recurs and publishes: Homo Deus, a brief history of the future also available in audio book. In the face of ever more intelligent technological developments and algorithms, the author questions the future of humanity. Far from asserting himself as a prophet or diviner, Harari launches hypotheses and offers ideas for reflection on what our world could be tomorrow. It presents two possible scenarios, between the augmented man, dear to the transhumanists of the Silicon valley and the "dataism" or religion of the data, which makes the authority of the humans to the algorithms.

Historical and scientific knowledge, combined with the real talent of Yuval Noah Harari's pedagogue, necessarily incites the reader to question himself. It offers a breathtaking glimpse of the dreams and nightmares that will shape the 21st century. Harari is now one of the most widely read historians in the world, whose fan community continues to grow. Will you be part of it?