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Gustav Milne studied archaeology at the University of Oxford and at Birkbeck College, University of London. He worked as a professional archaeologist with the Museum of London for 20 years before lecturing at the Institute of Archaeology, University College London (UCL). He now leads the national community-based CITiZAN coastal archaeology project, hosted by the Museum of London Archaeology and featured in the Channel 4 series Britain at Low Tide.
January 2018 Non-Fiction Book of the Month Gustav Milne gives us an overarching view of the known facts about Human evolution, showing how our outer “shells” mask a very hunter-gatherer interior. We may show Urban cool to the world but our instincts, our brains, our guts all remain in the past, often ill-adapted to cope with modern life. This factor is so often ignored, and this book acts as a timely reminder that mental illness, addictions - even our behaviour can be caused by our ill-adaption. There are ways to cope – and knowing the whys and wherefores is a good place to start, Uncivilised Genes introduces the reader to the vast array of history, research and knowledge that deals with our culture and how best we can deal with urban life - even how it can deal better with us. Like for Like Reading The Human Zoo: A Zoologist’s Study of the Urban Animal by Desmond Morris Fat Chance: The Hidden Truth about Sugar, Obesity and Disease by Robert Lustig
Between 1940 and 1945 London suffered 101 daylight and 253 night-time air raids from the Luftwaffe and V1 and V2's. There were 80,000 fatalities or serious injuries and appalling devastation. Well documented as these horrific events are, there was another major threat - the all too real possibility of widespread flooding whenever the Nazi onslaught breached the Thames' river defences. This superbly researched and illustrated book describes the vital role and unsung achievements of the London County Council emergency repair teams ably led by Chief Engineer Thomas Peirson Frank. Three rapid response units were formed and, in the event, undertook repairs to over 100 breaches of the flood defences, thus saving the Capital from drowning. We also learn of the fate of London's docks and bridges and of the ships, boats and barges lost in the estuary and tideway. This fascinating account has been compiled by the Thames Discovery Programme team and, 80 years on, pays tribute to the non-combatants who kept the major port running and saved London.
It was during the later medieval period that London grew to become the largest town in the land. Certainly by the thirteenth century it had established itself as the principal port in the kingdom, head and shoulders above its rivals. The author is closely involved in a 25-year study of the London waterfront. These extensive excavations enable him to describe the changing appearance of the town and its -- with the ships and merchants over the long period from 600 to 1500. The resulting picture is a vivid reconstruction of the working port of London, the dynamic engine of the medieval economy.