Today, Homo sapiens regularly use psychoactive chemicals to modify the mind – but how did it all begin?
Overhunting of megafauna such as mammoths may have force us to take up farming, ultimately leading to modern society
Cyril Porchet, Swiss born 1984, Untitled 2014 from the series Crowd, inkjet print.
139.0 x 169.0 x 3.5 cm.
© Cyril Porchet
Many of the world’s greatest photographers focus on our shared human experience in a milestone exhibition.
Yolngu boys from north-eastern Arnhem Land perform the Bunggul traditional dance during the Garma Festival in 2018. The Yolngu have flourished for up to 50,000 years.
It’s time for a more reasonable, hybrid definition of civilisation that incorporates our Indigenous heritage.
The use of stone tools is evidence of technnological sophistication.
Stone working is one of the most successful technologies used by humans, from 3.3 million years ago to the present day. So don’t think its “primitive”.
Aphrodite of Menophantos, Praxiteles (4th century BCE). Palazzo Massimo alle Terme, Rome, Italy.
Five decades on from the original series our idea of what makes civilisation has broadened.
An Afghanistan national police officer helps a U.S. Army lieutenant, June 14, 2007. Can honour be restored in today’s international conflicts?
Michael Bracken/US Army/Flickr
Nothing displays the ethical superiority of one’s values better than to treat a foe with the respect due another human being.
The Ottoman empire facilitated the movement of ideas and people across Europe and Asia.
The new Ramsay Centre for Western Civilisation aims to ‘revive’ liberal arts and the humanities. Yet the ‘civilisation’ model of history is now viewed as deeply flawed.
Humans aren’t alone in wanting to take revenge – some animals like to get their own back too.
Marble statue of Roman Ceres or Greek Demeter.
The Romans inherited their idea of human nature from the Greeks.
The Greco-Roman society believed that people weren’t born human, they became human. But how can humanity be defined?That’s what the project of decolonising the humanities could be dedicated to.
Contemporary sculpture – but why bother?
Look back into prehistory and it’s all about trusting strangers.
A handy guide to rebooting human civilisation.
Insects developed technology long before we did, so perhaps they can show us how to use it without damaging the planet.
Floods during warm periods of human history likely inspired the Noah’s Ark myth.
Noah's ark image from www.shutterstock.com
2015 will likely be a degree warmer than before people started pumping greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. The last time the world was this hot wasn’t great for civilisation.
Empires were built through the art of war.
According to British historian Arnold Toynbee, “History is just one damned thing after another.” Or is it? That is the question Peter Turchin of the University of Connecticut in Storrs tries to answer…
Climate change may have led to drought and famine-induced conflict in ancient Eastern Mediterranean civilisations, the study found.
Climate change sparked the political and economic turmoil that hastened the collapse of formerly prosperous civilisations in regions such as Greece and Syria towards the end of the 13th century BC, a new…
Humanity’s control of fire has led to a vastly changed atmosphere.
Jason A Samfield
The evidence for a rapid shift in state of the terrestrial atmosphere-ocean system over the last two centuries (see figure 1) requires a deep time perspective, beyond events of the day. Tracing the original…
Across the West this year, civilization will fall, as one by one, Christmas dinners collapse into war by other means.
In a successful civilization every activity becomes a genuine education. All pursuits approach the dream of “motherhood”: citizens are gently and lovingly raised to be more noble, empathetic, playful…