The rise of agricultural states came at a big cost, a new book argues

Mobile groups traded health and happiness for settled societies

Egyptian agricultural mural

BITTER HARVEST  Early agricultural states that formed in Egypt and elsewhere were fragile creations, not least because of crowding, epidemics, droughts and popular resistance to taxation and conscription into armies, contends political anthropologist James C. Scott in his new book.

Maler der Grabkammer des Menna/Wikimedia Commons

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