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Uncivilised Genes: Human evolution and the urban paradox

by Gustav Milne Independent Thinking Press
Pub Date:
Pbk 272 pages
AU$37.99 NZ$39.12
Product Status: In Stock Now
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Modern urban living is fundamentally mismatched with our Palaeolithic genome. We evolved as hunter-gatherers, living off the land in tribal societies. Culturally, society has changed with remarkable speed. Anatomically, however, we remain much as we were thousands of years ago. The dichotomy between the world we currently live in and the one we are genetically, metabolically, physiologically and psychologically designed for is profound. Although there are major benefits in urban living which we all enjoy, there are also costs, such as the ‘urban lifestyle’ diseases – type 2 diabetes, coronary illness, autoimmune disease and so on – that have become depressingly familiar. By adopting proxy behaviours that simulate a Palaeolithic hunter-gatherer lifestyle and an environment in which such conditions were rare or non-existent, you could extend your life, make your town a better place and save the NHS!

This book will be warmly welcomed by all humanity (unless you are a car manufacturer, sugar producer or high-rise architect) and in particular to anyone interested in living a more evolutionary, concordant life.


Contents include: 1. In the Beginning 2. Genesis 3. A View of the Garden 4. A Hunger Game 5. Food for Thought 6. Body of Evidence 7. A Life Less Sedentary 8. Lost Tribes 9. Hunter-Gatherer vs. Football-Shopper 10. Music and Words 11. Green and Pleasant 12. Central Park 13. Old Town 14. Urban Regeneration 15. Revelations

Gustav Milne studied archaeology at the University of Oxford and Birkbeck College, University of London. He worked as a professional archaeologist with the Museum of London for 20 years before taking up a permanent lecturership at the Institute of Archaeology at University College London. Although recently semi-retired, he still teaches part-time at UCL.