Open Library logo
New Feature: You can now embed Open Library books on your website!   Learn More
Cover of: 1491 | Charles C. Mann
About the Book

A groundbreaking study that radically alters our understanding of the Americas before the arrival of the Europeans in 1492.Traditionally, Americans learned in school that the ancestors of the people who inhabited the Western Hemisphere at the time of Columbus's landing had crossed the Bering Strait twelve thousand years ago; existed mainly in small, nomadic bands; and lived so lightly on the land that the Americas was, for all practical purposes, still a vast wilderness. But as Charles C. Mann now makes clear, archaeologists and anthropologists have spent the last thirty years proving these and many other long-held assumptions wrong.In a book that startles and persuades, Mann reveals how a new generation of researchers equipped with novel scientific techniques came to previously unheard-of conclusions. Among them:- In 1491 there were probably more people living in the Americas than in Europe.- Certain cities--such as Tenochtitlan, the Aztec capital--were far greater in population than any contemporary European city. Furthermore, Tenochtitlan, unlike any capital in Europe at that time, had running water, beautiful botanical gardens, and immaculately clean streets.- The earliest cities in the Western Hemisphere were thriving before the Egyptians built the great pyramids.- Pre-Columbian Indians in Mexico developed corn by a breeding process so sophisticated that the journal Science recently described it as "man's first, and perhaps the greatest, feat of genetic engineering."- Amazonian Indians learned how to farm the rain forest without destroying it--a process scientists are studying today in the hope of regaining this lost knowledge.- Native Americans transformed their land so completely that Europeans arrived in a hemisphere already massively "landscaped" by human beings.Mann sheds clarifying light on the methods used to arrive at these new visions of the pre-Columbian Americas and how they have affected our understanding of our history and our thinking about the environment. His book is an exciting and learned account of scientific inquiry and revelation.From the Hardcover edition.

Classifications

Library of Congress E61 .M266 2005

8 editions First published in 2005

Edition Read Locate Buy
Cover of: 1491
1491
2006, Granta
Cover of: 1491
1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus
October 10, 2006, Vintage
Paperback in English
Cover of: 1491
1491
2006, knopf
Cover of: 1491
1491
2006, Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
eBook in English
Cover of: 1491
Cover of: 1491
1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus
August 9, 2005, Knopf
Hardcover in English
Cover of: 1491
1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus
August 18, 2005, Highbridge Audio
Audio CD in English - Abridged edition
Cover of: 1491
1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus
August 18, 2005, Highbridge Audio
Audio Cassette in English

History

Download catalog record: RDF / JSON
October 4, 2017 Edited by Clean Up Bot adding to Long Now Manual for Civilization
July 22, 2017 Edited by Mek adding subject: In library
October 19, 2011 Edited by ImportBot import new book
October 6, 2011 Edited by New York Times Bestsellers Bot Adding tags to New York Times Paperback Nonfiction bestsellers
December 10, 2009 Created by WorkBot add works page