The Sociable Species

The two different revolutions that Harari claims formed modern modern civilization is the Cognitive and Agricultural Revolutions. The Cognitive Revolution is where Homo Sapiens used their learning and ability to communicate to differentiate themselves from other humans. As for the Agricultural Revolution, that was when Homo Sapiens made the transition from hunter-gatherers to farmers. Making the transition to farmers made it possible for humans to produce more children which drastically increased their population. It started when humans would bring back wheat to their camps, some of the wheat would fall and in time grew closer to their camps, which made humans think it would be better to just settle in one place (Harari p. 84). The biggest basis for modern civilization, in my eyes, is the Cognitive Revolution, Harari states that Homo Sapiens were able to outlast every other species was not because they could communicate, but because of “how” they could communicate. They could think of strategies when hunting or fighting, and were even capable of imagining figurative beings like a god (Harari p. 25).


The way that Homo Sapiens became dominant over all other humans and became top of the food chain was the way in which they could think and communicate with one another. This is the main idea behind the Cognitive Revolution, according to Harari claims that because Homo Sapiens could not only tell each other where danger was, but also what strategy to use for the best outcome, they were able to hunt large amounts of animals at once and fight better against other humans. Also that Homo Sapiens are a more social species than the other humans which makes it easier to live in large numbers. The biggest claim that I believe from Harari is the idea that Homo Sapiens lasted longer is through their social ability and willingness to live in large numbers. All the other humans had access to the same tools and had same start in life, but since the Sapiens could communicate better, they were better off. But what I have a hard believing is Harari claiming that since we only share about 4% of DNA with Neanderthals that there wasn’t much breeding between us (Harari p. 16). I just find that number to massive when thinking about an entire species.