A Brief History of Tomorrow
Official U.S. edition with full color illustrations throughout.
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
Yuval Noah Harari, author of the critically-acclaimed New York Times bestseller and international phenomenon Sapiens, returns with an equally original, compelling, and provocative book, turning his focus toward humanity’s future, and our quest to upgrade humans into gods.
Over the past century humankind has managed to do the impossible and rein in famine, plague, and war. This may seem hard to accept, but, as Harari explains in his trademark style—thorough, yet riveting—famine, plague and war have been transformed from incomprehensible and uncontrollable forces of nature into manageable challenges. For the first time ever, more people die from eating too much than from eating too little; more people die from old age than from infectious diseases; and more people commit suicide than are killed by soldiers, terrorists and criminals put together. The average American is a thousand times more likely to die from binging at McDonalds than from being blown up by Al Qaeda.
What then will replace famine, plague, and war at the top of the human agenda? As the self-made gods of planet earth, what destinies will we set ourselves, and which quests will we undertake? Homo Deus explores the projects, dreams and nightmares that will shape the twenty-first century—from overcoming death to creating artificial life. It asks the fundamental questions: Where do we go from here? And how will we protect this fragile world from our own destructive powers? This is the next stage of evolution. This is Homo Deus.
With the same insight and clarity that made Sapiens an international hit and a New York Times bestseller, Harari maps out our future.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
What will humanity look like in the year 2100? Bestselling Israeli historian Yuval Noah Harari has a theory, and let's just say it's not especially optimistic. In this fast-paced follow-up to Sapiens—his hugely influential take on all of human history—Harari focuses on the future of our species, which he believes will be in thrall to technologies we designed to "improve" our lives. Haunting and propulsive, Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow is a mind-bending assessment of a global future that’s far from guaranteed.
Harari (Sapiens), professor of history at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, provocatively explores what the future may have in store for humans in this deeply troubling book. He makes it clear that it is impossible to predict the future, so claims to be offering "possibilities rather than prophecies" and builds a strong case for a very specific outcome. The future to which he affords the greatest probability is, in many ways, a dystopian world in which humanism has given way to "dataism" the belief that value is measured by its contribution to information transfer and humans play an insignificant role in world affairs or have gone extinct. The roles humans play are diminishing, Harari argues, because increasingly our creations are able to demonstrate intelligence beyond human levels and without consciousness. Whether one accepts Harari's vision, it's a bumpy journey to that conclusion. He rousingly defends the argument that humans have made the world safer from disease and famine though his position that warfare has decreased remains controversial and debatable. The next steps on the road to dataism, he predicts, are through three major projects: "immortality, happiness, and divinity." Harari paints with a very broad brush throughout, but he raises stimulating questions about both the past and the future.
Great historical thesis, too much speculation
This book has great, sweeping visions of the future and describes a great logical chain. I liked the historical reframings. However a lot of the prose is speculative and thinly-evidenced. The sentence structure is monotonous and professorial. Interesting book with a lot of novel ideas, but became a little tough to finish.
Agree or not, as there will be times you will not agree with Harari, let that be a clear indication that nobody can predict the future, yet this Historian makes way for things that are happening as I currently read through this book. He has turned history into an art form, and it has helped inspire and enlighten new paths of thinking for many, in many different fields. A true gift.
A vision of where we have been, who we are now, and what we may become. Professor Harari challenges the reader to ask the big question, where are we going as a species? He points out some options that may not be too pretty. Is the end of the line irrelevance? Give it a read. Come see for yourself.