Fishing: How the Sea Fed Civilization (Hardcover)

How the Sea Fed Civilization

By Brian Fagan

Yale University Press, 9780300215342, 368pp.

Publication Date: September 26, 2017

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Description

Humanity's last major source of food from the wild, and how it enabled and shaped the growth of civilization

In this history of fishing--not as sport but as sustenance--archaeologist and best-selling author Brian Fagan argues that fishing was an indispensable and often overlooked element in the growth of civilization. It sustainably provided enough food to allow cities, nations, and empires to grow, but it did so with a different emphasis. Where agriculture encouraged stability, fishing demanded movement. It frequently required a search for new and better fishing grounds; its technologies, centered on boats, facilitated movement and discovery; and fish themselves, when dried and salted, were the ideal food--lightweight, nutritious, and long-lasting--for traders, travelers, and conquering armies. This history of the long interaction of humans and seafood tours archaeological sites worldwide to show readers how fishing fed human settlement, rising social complexity, the development of cities, and ultimately the modern world.


About the Author

Brian Fagan, emeritus professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara, is one of the world's leading archaeological writers. His books include Fish on Friday, The Little Ice Age, and the best-selling The Great Warming.
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