Work, Sex and Power: The Forces that Shaped Our History

Work, Sex and Power: The Forces that Shaped Our History

By: Willie Thompson (author)Hardback

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This is the history of the world, from the origins of the Cosmos to the present day, seen through three major narratives: work, sex and power - the forces that have done more than any other to shape the world as we see it now. It expertly explores the foundations of our developing society by showing how these grand themes have recurred throughout the various phases of global history. From communities of Palaeolithic hunter-gatherers, through feudalism and onto the capitalistic machine-civilisation of recent centuries, Willie Thompson takes us on a journey that is fundamentally opposed to mainstream histories which concentrate on monarchs, politicians and military commanders. At the centre of this book lies the interaction between humans and their environment. By exploring history in this way, it reveals a simple yet powerful materialist understanding of how we got to where we are today, and opens a door to a different reading of our world.

About Author

Willie Thompson was Professor of Contemporary History at Glasgow Caledonian University. His books include Work, Sex and Power (Pluto, 2015), Ideologies in the Age of Extremes (Pluto, 2011) and What Happened to History? (Pluto, 2000). He is currently vice-president of the Socialist History Society.


Introduction 1. Cosmos, Creatures and Consciousness 2. Cooperation, Stone, Bone and Dispersal 3. The Neolithic Transformation: Settlement, Wealth and Social Differentiation 4. Gender Differentiation, Sex and Kindred 5. Status Differentiation, Hierarchy and Hegemony 6. Exploitation and Violence 7. Ethics, Ambitions, Crime and Punishment 8. The Origins of Belief in the Supernatural and the First Salvation Religions 9. Monotheism 10. Imagined Communities: Signs and Symbols, Identities and Nations 11. A Broad View - The Rhythm of Empire 12. Human Reality in Transformation: Modern Population, Migration and Labour 13. Inhuman Powers - Capitalism, Industry and their Consequences 14. No Such Thing as a Free Lunch: Trade-Offs, Opportunity Cost and the Dynamic of Unintended Consequences 15. Social Critique 16. Socialism: its Promise and Paradox 17. Desperately Seeking Significance Notes Index

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9780745333410
  • Format: Hardback
  • Number Of Pages: 288
  • ID: 9780745333410
  • ISBN10: 0745333419

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