Humans have existed for at least 200,000 years. Yet until recently, historians believed that cities, astronomy, architecture and numeracy did not arrive until agriculture emerged some 12,000 years ago.
But what if that was wrong? What if cities existed before agriculture and our hunter gatherer ancestors enjoyed a far more complex existence than we thought? And if they did, then what are the implications for modern political theory - which justifies inequality on the basis that we live in a higher, more sophisticated form of society that was always inevitable? What if there were social revolutions before documented history? And what if humankind had engaged in innumerable experiments in how best to live - including ones that involved the rejection of what we would consider to be ‘civilisation’?
Aaron Bastani discusses all of that, and more, with archaeologist and co-author of the bestselling ‘Dawn of Everything’ David Wengrow.