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Jared Diamond - Author

About the Author

Jared Diamond was born in Boston to a physician father and a teacher/musician/linguist mother. After training in laboratory biological science he became Professor of Physiology at UCLA Medical School in 1966. However, already while in his twenties, he also developed a second parallel career in the ecology and evolution of New Guinea birds. That led him to explore some of the most remote parts of that great tropical island, and to rediscover New Guinea’s long-lost Golden-fronted Bowerbird. In his fifties he gradually developed a third career in environmental history, becoming Professor of Geography and of Environmental Health Sciences at UCLA.
 

As well as being renowned in academic circles, Jared Diamond is famous for his prize-winning books The Third Chimpanzee and Why is Sex Fun?, and for revolutionizing the study of global human history with Guns, Germs and Steel. His awards include a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship (a ‘genius award’), and the Pulitzer Prize for non-fiction. The broad range of disciplines that he weaves into his writing – linguistics, genetics, animal behaviour, molecular biology and others – caused a reviewer to write, ‘ “Jared Diamond” is suspected of actually being the pseudonym for a committee of experts.’ In his spare time he watches birds and learns languages (he is currently learning his twelfth). He is the father of seventeen-year-old twin sons who have informed much of his outlook on life.


 

Featured books by Jared Diamond

Other books by Jared Diamond

Upheaval How Nations Cope with Crisis and Change

Upheaval How Nations Cope with Crisis and Change

Author: Jared Diamond Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/05/2019

In his landmark international bestsellers Guns, Germs and Steel and Collapse, Jared Diamond transformed our understanding of what makes civilizations rise and fall. Now in the third book in this monumental trilogy, he reveals how successful nations recover from crisis. Diamond shows us how seven countries have survived defining upheavals in the recent past - from the forced opening up of Japan and the Soviet invasion of Finland to the Pinochet regime in Chile - through selective change, a process of painful self-appraisal and adaptation more commonly associated with personal trauma. Looking ahead to the future, he investigates whether the United States, and the world, are squandering their natural advantages and are on a devastating path towards catastrophe. Is this fate inevitable? Or can we still learn from the lessons of the past? Exhibiting the awe-inspiring grasp of history, geography, economics and anthropology that marks all Diamond's work, Upheaval reveals how both nations and individuals can become more resilient. The result is a book epic in scope, but also his most personal yet.

Upheaval How Nations Cope with Crisis and Change

Upheaval How Nations Cope with Crisis and Change

Author: Jared Diamond Format: Hardback Release Date: 07/05/2019

*FEATURED IN BILL GATES'S 2019 SUMMER READING RECOMMENDATIONS* *A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER* 'A riveting and illuminating tour of how nations deal with crises - which might hopefully help humanity as a whole deal with our present global crisis' Yuval Noah Harari, author of Sapiens In his landmark international bestsellers Guns, Germs and Steel and Collapse, Jared Diamond transformed our understanding of what makes civilizations rise and fall. Now, at a time when crises are erupting around the world, he reveals what makes certain nations resilient in the face of tremendous upheaval. In a riveting journey into the recent past, he traces how six countries have survived defining catastrophes - from the forced opening of Japan to the Soviet invasion of Finland to Chile's brutal Pinochet regime - through selective change, a coping mechanism more commonly associated with personal trauma. He identifies unique patterns in the way that these distinctive modern nations - all countries in which he has lived - have recovered from these upheavals. Looking ahead to the gravest threats we face in the future, he investigates the risk that the United States, and the world, are squandering their natural advantages and are on a devastating path towards catastrophe. Is this fate inevitable? Or can we still learn from the lessons of the past? Adding a psychological dimension to the in-depth history, geography, biology, and anthropology that mark all of Diamond's books, Upheaval reveals the factors that influence how both nations and individuals can respond to enormous challenges. The result is a book epic in scope, but also his most personal yet.

Guns, Germs and Steel (Patterns of Life)

Guns, Germs and Steel (Patterns of Life)

Author: Jared Diamond Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/04/2018

PATTERNS OF LIFE: SPECIAL EDITIONS OF GROUNDBREAKING SCIENCE BOOKS Why has human history unfolded so differently across the globe? In this Pulitzer Prize-winning book, Jared Diamond puts the case that geography and biogeography, not race, moulded the contrasting fates of Europeans, Asians, Native Americans, sub-Saharan Africans, and aboriginal Australians. An ambitious synthesis of history, biology, ecology and linguistics, Guns, Germs and Steel remains a ground-breaking and humane work of popular science.

Guns, Germs, and Steel The Fates of Human Societies

Guns, Germs, and Steel The Fates of Human Societies

Author: Jared Diamond Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/03/2017

In this artful, informative, and delightful (William H. McNeill, New York Review of Books) book, Jared Diamond convincingly argues that geographical and environmental factors shaped the modern world. Societies that had had a head start in food production advanced beyond the hunter-gatherer stage, and then developed religion --as well as nasty germs and potent weapons of war --and adventured on sea and land to conquer and decimate preliterate cultures. A major advance in our understanding of human societies, Guns, Germs, and Steel chronicles the way that the modern world came to be and stunningly dismantles racially based theories of human history. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, the Phi Beta Kappa Award in Science, the Rhone-Poulenc Prize, and the Commonwealth club of California's Gold Medal.

The Third Chimpanzee On the Evolution and Future of the Human Animal

The Third Chimpanzee On the Evolution and Future of the Human Animal

Author: Jared Diamond Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/09/2015

The Third Chimpanzee was first published in 1991 and has been in print ever since. This new, illustrated edition is aimed at a young readership. In it, Jared Diamond explores what makes us human and poses fascinating questions. If we share more than 98% of our DNA with chimpanzees, how is it that we can write, read, talk, build telescopes and bombs, while we put our speechless and bomb-less close relatives in cages and zoos? What can woodpeckers teach us about spacecraft? Is genocide a human invention? Why does extinction matter? Why are we destroying the natural resources on which we depend for survival? What hope is there for future generations? Not only is The Third Chimpanzee a mind-boggling survey of how we came to be, but it is also a plea to the next generation to make better decisions than their parents and get us out of the mess we're in.

Why Is Sex Fun? The Evolution of Human Sexuality

Why Is Sex Fun? The Evolution of Human Sexuality

Author: Jared Diamond Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/03/2015

A fascinating insight into how human sexuality came to be the way it is now - Jared Diamond explains why we are different from the animal kingdom. Why are humans one of the few species to have sex in private? Why do humans have sex any day of the month or year, including when the female is pregnant, beyond her reproductive years, or between her fertile cycles? Why are human females one of the few mammals to go through menopause? Human sexuality seems normal to us but it is bizarre by the standards of other animals. Jared Diamond argues that our strange sex lives were as crucial to our rise to human status as were our large brains. He also describes the battle of the sexes in the human and animal world over parental care, and why sex differences in the genetic value of parental care provide a biological basis for the all-too-familiar different attitudes of men and women towards extramarital sex.

Kollaps

Kollaps

Author: Jared Diamond Format: eBook Release Date: 20/11/2014

Der Weltbestseller als erweiterte Neuausgabe!Die uberwucherten Tempelruinen von Angkor Wat, die zerfallenden Pyramiden der Maya in Yucatan und die ratselhaften Moai-Statuen der Osterinsel - sie alle sind stille Zeugen von einstmals bluhenden Kulturen, die irgendwann verschwanden. Doch was waren die Ursachen dafur? Jared Diamond zeichnet in seiner erweiterten, faszinierenden wie hochaktuellen Studie die Muster nach, die dem Untergang von Gesellschaften (oder ihrem Uberleben) zugrunde liegen, und zeigt, was wir fur unsere Zukunft daraus lernen konnen.

Collapse

Collapse

Author: Jared Diamond Format: eBook Release Date: 04/11/2014

In Jared Diamond's follow-up to the Pulitzer-Prize winning Guns, Germs and Steel, the author explores how climate change, the population explosion, and political discord create the conditions for the collapse of civilizationEnvironmental damage, climate change, globalization, rapid population growth, and unwise political choices were all factors in the demise of societies around the world, but some found solutions and persisted. As in Guns, Germs, and Steel, Diamond traces the fundamental pattern of catastrophe, and weaves an all-encompassing global thesis through a series of fascinating historical-cultural narratives. Collapse moves from the Polynesian cultures on Easter Island to the flourishing American civilizations of the Anasazi and the Maya and finally to the doomed Viking colony on Greenland. Similar problems face us today and have already brought disaster to Rwanda and Haiti, even as China and Australia are trying to cope in innovative ways. Despite our own society's apparently inexhaustible wealth and unrivaled political power, ominous warning signs have begun to emerge even in ecologically robust areas like Montana.Brilliant, illuminating, and immensely absorbing, Collapse is destined to take its place as one of the essential books of our time, raising the urgent question: How can our world best avoid committing ecological suicide?

Vermachtnis

Vermachtnis

Author: Jared Diamond Format: eBook Release Date: 25/10/2012

Noch heute leben zahlreiche Stamme als Jager und Sammler in unzuganglichen Teilen der Welt. Jared Diamond, Professor fur Geographie und international erfolgreicher Bestsellerautor, kennt sie aus vielen Expeditionen, die er in den letzten Jahrzehnten geleitet hat. In seinem neuen Buch entfaltet er den ganzen Reichtum ihrer verbluffend anderen Lebensweise und zeigt anschaulich, was wir heute von ihnen lernen konnen. Eine uberraschende und unterhaltsame Lektion uber die Vielfalt der Kulturen - und eine Kritik unseres modernen Selbstverstandnisses."e;Jared Diamond schreibt mit Witz, Esprit und groem Sachverstand."e;Die Welt"e;Die Zivilisation hat uns reich, satt und bequem gemacht, aber nicht rundum zufrieden. Jared Diamond hilft uns zu erkennen, woran das liegt. Und nicht nur das: Er sagt uns auch, was wir besser machen konnen. Vorbilder gibt es genug, von Afrika bis Neuguinea."e;Stern"e;Eine Fundgrube und ein Gedankenanreger ohnegleichen."e;Financial Times Deutschland"e;Auf Diamond passt das uberstrapazierte Wort vom Universalgelehrten genau, dazu gehort auch, dass er Autodidakt geblieben ist, um Wissenslucken bald zu schlieen, wenn die sich neu offneten. Er ist die Lernfahigkeit selbst."e;Die Zeit"e;Wichtige Einsichten in unser traditionelles wie modernes Menschsein."e;Der Tagesspiegel

Third Chimpanzee

Third Chimpanzee

Author: Jared Diamond Format: eBook Release Date: 03/04/2012

The Development of an Extraordinary SpeciesWe human beings share 98 percent of our genes with chimpanzees. Yet humans are the dominant species on the planet -- having founded civilizations and religions, developed intricate and diverse forms of communication, learned science, built cities, and created breathtaking works of art -- while chimps remain animals concerned primarily with the basic necessities of survival. What is it about that two percent difference in DNA that has created such a divergence between evolutionary cousins? In this fascinating, provocative, passionate, funny, endlessly entertaining work, renowned Pulitzer Prizewinning author and scientist Jared Diamond explores how the extraordinary human animal, in a remarkably short time, developed the capacity to rule the world . . . and the means to irrevocably destroy it.

Primates The Road to Self-Sustaining Populations

Primates The Road to Self-Sustaining Populations

Author: Jared Diamond Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/10/2011

This conference represents the first time in my life when I felt it was a misfor- tune, rather than a major cause of my happiness, that I do conservation work in New Guinea. Yes, it is true that New Guinea is a fascinating microcosm, it has fascinating birds and people, and it has large expanses of undisturbed rainforest. In the course of my work there, helping the Indonesian government and World Wildlife Fund set up a comprehensive national park system, I have been able to study animals in areas without any human population. But New Guinea has one serious drawback: it has no primates, except for humans. Thus, I come to this conference on primate conservation as an underprivileged and emotionally deprived observer, rather than as an involved participant. Nevertheless, it is easy for anyone to become interested in primate conserva- tion. The public cares about primates. More specifically, to state things more realistically, many people care some of the time about some primates. Primates are rivaled only by birds, pandas, and the big cats in their public appeal. For some other groups of animals, the best we can say is that few people care about them, infrequently. For most groups of animals, no one cares about them, ever.

Natural Experiments of History

Natural Experiments of History

Author: Jared Diamond Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/04/2011

Some central questions in the natural and social sciences can't be answered by controlled laboratory experiments, often considered to be the hallmark of the scientific method. This impossibility holds for any science concerned with the past. In addition, many manipulative experiments, while possible, would be considered immoral or illegal. One has to devise other methods of observing, describing, and explaining the world. In the historical disciplines, a fruitful approach has been to use natural experiments or the comparative method. This book consists of eight comparative studies drawn from history, archeology, economics, economic history, geography, and political science. The studies cover a spectrum of approaches, ranging from a non-quantitative narrative style in the early chapters to quantitative statistical analyses in the later chapters. The studies range from a simple two-way comparison of Haiti and the Dominican Republic, which share the island of Hispaniola, to comparisons of 81 Pacific islands and 233 areas of India. The societies discussed are contemporary ones, literate societies of recent centuries, and non-literate past societies. Geographically, they include the United States, Mexico, Brazil, western Europe, tropical Africa, India, Siberia, Australia, New Zealand, and other Pacific islands. In an Afterword, the editors discuss how to cope with methodological problems common to these and other natural experiments of history.

Guns, Germs, and Steel

Guns, Germs, and Steel

Author: Jared Diamond Format: eBook Release Date: 18/01/2011

In this ';artful, informative, and delightful' (William H. McNeill, New York Review of Books) book, Jared Diamond convincingly argues that geographical and environmental factors shaped the modern world. Societies that had had a head start in food production advanced beyond the hunter-gatherer stage, and then developed religionas well as nasty germs and potent weapons of warand adventured on sea and land to conquer and decimate preliterate cultures. A major advance in our understanding of human societies, Guns, Germs, and Steel chronicles the way that the modern world came to be and stunningly dismantles racially based theories of human history. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, the Phi Beta Kappa Award in Science, the Rhone-Poulenc Prize, and the Commonwealth Club of California's Gold Medal.

Warum macht Sex Spa?

Warum macht Sex Spa?

Author: Jared Diamond Format: eBook Release Date: 05/10/2009

Der Bestsellerautor Jared Diamond uber die bizarre Sexualitat des MenschenWarum betreiben wir Menschen Sex hauptsachlich zum Vergnugen statt zur Fortpflanzung und Erhaltung der Art? Und lauft das nicht der Evolution zuwider? Warum Sex mit Frauen, die schwanger oder jenseits der Menopause sind? Sex konnte doch energiesparend auf die fruchtbaren Tage beschrankt werden ...Mit Witz, Esprit und groem Sachverstand erlautert der mehrfach ausgezeichnete Evolutionsbiologe Jared Diamond, wie sich der Mensch in seinem Sexualverhalten von anderen Tieren unterscheidet - und dass genau darin der Schlussel zu seinem evolutionaren Erfolg liegt.