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Top Books on Reddit in 2018 rank no. 112
Historians, which books are the “must-reads” for anyone trying to learn more about your field?(r/history)
It looks like you are talking about the book Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond.
The book over the past years has become rather popular, which is hardly surprising since it is a good and entertaining read. It has reached the point that for some people it has sort of reached the status of gospel. On /r/history we noticed a trend where every time a question was asked that has even the slightest relation to the book a dozen or so people would jump in and recommending the book. Which in the context of history is a bit problematic and the reason this reply has been written.
Why it is problematic can be broken down into two reasons:
- In academic history there isn’t such thing as one definitive authority or work on things, there are often others who research the same subjects and people that dive into work of others to build on it or to see if it indeed holds up. This being critical of your sources and not relying on one source is actually a very important history skill often lacking when dozens of people just spam the same work over and over again as…