Having Historians Read Your Horoscope

Harari explains that the industrial revolution was a major motivator for state powers. It began with defeating, manipulating, and changing nature. Eventually people’s lives became reliant on time and urbanization. Families became less important in urban neighborhoods, and people relied on the state for protection. Services like police force and welfare reinforced a belief in state (Harari, 350-356). Harari believes that the industrial revolution and mass production of materials was the turning point for belief in states and markets. I think I agree with his thoughts. The industrial revolution was such a turning point for many parts of the world. Families were working in factories to make a living rather than relying on farming or small shops with few workers. Investments began to circulate with the idea of taking upon debts to make more money. These all are the beginning of relying on the state rather than oneself or family to be successful.

Harari begins his section on the future of mankind with many of the things that have happened or ideas that are currently being debated. He brings up issues like bionics, growing body parts on animals, and manipulation of DNA (Harari, 400-414). Many of these issues are very complicated in their implications, their possible positives, and the moral and political considerations involved. He brings up concerns for happiness of people and animals (Harari, 385-388). I think, as historians, it is important to consider all of these implications and concerns and to become somewhat a judicial figure in the world of science. It is the job of historians to consider the social aspects of the future when dealing with these complex issues of science. I think Harari has a good point when he says, “… it is naïve to imagine that we might simply hit the breaks and stop the scientific projects that are upgrading Homo Sapiens into a different kind of being (Harari, 414).

1 thought on “Having Historians Read Your Horoscope”

  1. Upgrade is kind of a scary word nowadays. I think in the future we will be more integrated with computers. This will “upgrade” our intelligence but have drawbacks, such as the one’s we are seeing right now from social media. Also, computer security is becoming a major industry and there are good and evil sides to it. We will have to tackle the issue of security before we can have cyborgs running around (sign me up).

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