or
Sign in to turn on 1-Click ordering.
Trade in Yours
For a 3.25 Gift Card
Trade in
More Buying Choices
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Colour:
Image not available

 
Tell the Publisher!
Id like to read this book on Kindle

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

A Thousand Years of Nonlinear History (Swerve Editions) [Paperback]

Manuel De Landa
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
RRP: 15.95
Price: 11.16 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
You Save: 4.79 (30%)
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
Only 2 left in stock (more on the way).
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
Want it tomorrow, 1 Sept.? Choose Express delivery at checkout. Details

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Hardcover --  
Paperback 11.16  
Trade In this Item for up to 3.25
Trade in A Thousand Years of Nonlinear History (Swerve Editions) for an Amazon Gift Card of up to 3.25, which you can then spend on millions of items across the site. Trade-in values may vary (terms apply). Learn more

Book Description

1 Nov 2000 Swerve Editions
Following in the wake of his groundbreaking War in the Age of Intelligent Machines, Manuel De Landa presents a radical synthesis of historical development over the last one thousand years. More than a simple expository history, A Thousand Years of Nonlinear History sketches the outlines of a renewed materialist philosophy of history in the tradition of Fernand Braudel, Gilles Deleuze, and Flix Guattari, while also engaging the critical new understanding of material processes derived from the sciences of dynamics. Working against prevailing attitudes that see history as an arena of texts, discourses, ideologies, and metaphors, De Landa traces the concrete movements and interplays of matter and energy through human populations in the last millennium.De Landa attacks three domains that have given shape to human societies: economics, biology, and linguistics. In every case, what one sees is the self-directed processes of matter and energy interacting with the whim and will of human history itself to form a panoramic vision of the West free of rigid teleology and naive notions of progress, and even more important, free of any deterministic source of its urban, institutional, and technological forms. Rather, the source of all concrete forms in the West's history are shown to derive from internal morphogenetic capabilities that lie within the flow of matter-energy itself.

Frequently Bought Together

A Thousand Years of Nonlinear History (Swerve Editions) + Philosophy and Simulation + A New Philosophy of Society: Assemblage Theory and Social Complexity
Price For All Three: 44.70

Buy the selected items together


Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Zone Books (1 Nov 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0942299329
  • ISBN-13: 978-0942299328
  • Product Dimensions: 22.6 x 15.2 x 2.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 81,940 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, and more.

Product Description

Review

"Forcefully challenges habituated understandings of'history., 'urban' and 'economics'." Christopher Hight, AA Files

From the Publisher

A novel approach to the study of human societies...
Following in the wake of his groundbreaking WAR IN THE AGE OF INTELLIGENT MACHINES, Manuel De Landa presents a radical synthesis of historical development over the last one thousand years. More than a simple expository history, A THOUSAND YEARS OF NONLINEAR HISTORY sketches the outlines of a renewed materialist philosophy of history in the tradition of Fernand Braudel, Gilles Deleuze, and Felix Guattari, while also engaging the critical new understanding of material processes derived from the sciences of dynamics. Working against prevailing attitudes that see history as an arena of texts, discourses, ideologies, and metaphors, De Landa traces the concrete movements and interplays of matter and energy through human populations in the last millennium. The result is a novel approach to the study of human societies and their always mobile, semi-stable forms: cities, economies, technologies, and languages.

De Landa attacks three domains that have given shape to human societies: economics, biology, and linguist --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


Inside This Book (Learn More)
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
Search inside this book:

Sell a Digital Version of This Book in the Kindle Store

If you are a publisher or author and hold the digital rights to a book, you can sell a digital version of it in our Kindle Store. Learn more

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?


Customer Reviews

3 star
0
2 star
0
1 star
0
4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a mind-reshaper 15 May 1999
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
Some people read books the way they settle into a favorite armchair--to feel comfortable in a familiar setting or genre. Others read to have the all-too-familiar worldview with which they've grown bored cracked open like a walnut so they can eat a form of intellectual meat they've never before imagined. For the folks who are continually discontented with old ideas and who feed with manic delight on new ones, De Landa's book is a must. Once you've read the first hundred pages, you'll find yourself living in a new geopolitical and historical world. one whose inner workings you now see through a pair of x-ray goggles.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating but ... 4 Dec 2011
By JlH
Format:Paperback
I read this when it first appeared and found it spellbinding (to the extent that elements of its vision became part of my own). However,revisiting the book recently I was struck by its latent eurocentrism. Indeed, stripped of its Deleuzian lexicon and Braudelian materiality De Landa's thousand year non-linear history seems perilously close to the familiar and all too linear history of the inevitable triumph of the West over a homogeneous, benighted 'rest'.

By way of illustration consider the following: 'in northern Europe in the middle ages, there was a gene coding for an enzyme that allowed adult humans to digest raw milk. Elsewhere, in the populations of China and Islam, the gene did not exist'. Given that the prevalence of said gene was about equal in the populations of Southern Europe and the 'populations of Islam'[sic] and far more prevalent than those of the Far East, the conjunction here of the latter two seems intent on biologizing an orientalist narrative. These concerns become acute in the case of the establishment of the 'neo-Europes' wherein the brutal violence entailed in the colonization of the Americas is absolved by the flow of genes. Non-linear history has no place for the kind of sickening, systematic violence chronicled in work like Las Casas' 'Devastation of the Indies'. But as others have noted the the extraordinary susceptibility of these populations to novel pathogens cannot be separated from savagery they endured, their displacement of huge numbers as slave labour, and subsequent malnutrition-factors that barely warrant mention in De Landa's account.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful but strange 5 Dec 2007
Format:Paperback
I wrote the following review as part of my BSc Geography degree.

When dipping into a chapter entitled Geological History 1000-1700 AD one would expect to find information on rock types, the development of landforms and possibly the history of the development of geological though. In Manuel De Landa's book A Thousand Years of Nonlinear History however, this is not the case - what will actually be found is discussion of Christaller's Central Place Theory, the development of urban areas in both Europe and the Far East and different philosophical perspectives on these. This aspect of surprise continues throughout the book - De Landa's approach to all the topics covered is novel, and the insights gained from these approaches are huge.

Although the book is entitled A Thousand Years of Nonlinear History, it is by no means a standard history book - it focuses on the application of historical processes, and generally the passage of time, to many areas within human geography. The most important word in the title is probably "nonlinear" as this is the way in which De Landa approaches all the areas covered in his book. It is very difficult to define what is meant by nonlinear - the author takes many pages for his explanation - but simply put it is considering history as a tree with many branches rather than one pure and straight linear course. This idea of nonlinearity is extended throughout the book to cover different types of nonlinear development (such as hierarchies and meshworks) and is used as part of the explanation for many areas of geographical development.

The book is divided into three parts (Lavas and Magmas, Flesh and Genes and Memes and Norms) each of which contains chapters which look at the specified topic from 1000-1700 AD and then from 1700-2000 AD.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
4.0 out of 5 stars Deep explanation 2 Mar 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I didn't what to expect from his book when i chose it. Although it was slow in the beginning it did take a turn to the interesting. Really informative, great explanations, raises a lot of interesting issues. Good for anyone that likes to view the deeper meshwork of the whys of history, it's never as clear cut.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  22 reviews
63 of 64 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Prolegomena to any futurist sociophysics 1 Jan 2008
By The Dilettante - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
De Landa is deliciously weird sort of scholar: an autodidact, a committed generalist, a erudite synthesizer, and...oddly enough...an ideologue. The axe he has brought to grind here is a rigorous materialism, and he uses it to hack telos out at the root. He seeks to collapse the distinction between "natural" history and "human" history, and the result is a "history" that is almost unrecognizable as such.

He asks us to imagine the last thousand years as a seething storm of material processes. The "great men," the "human events," the wars and values and struggle are all completely absent. To the extent humans interest De Landa at all, they appear here as crowds, organizations, markets, capital and labor.

Instead, De Landa gives us a plausible (if sketchy and somewhat speculative) account of the thermodynamic, geological, chemical, and biological processes of the past 1000 years. But the genius of this book is that it is not merely the history of rocks, chemicals, and plants. Instead, De Landa has boldly abstracted the logical processes underlying the natural sciences into what he calls "engineering diagrams." He applies these diagrams to the world we know, teaching us to see city walls as sea-shell-like "accretions", society as a stratified riverbed, economies as highly complex chemical reactions, and nations as parasitic superorganisms. Above all, he helps us to see "progress" as a perspectival illusion, resulting from human-centric narrative bias. Again and again, he demonstrates that the "triumphs" of the Western world were spontaneous physical processes; reactions between elements like "biomass" "carbon" "steel" "money" "genes" "population" and "germs." These reactions become interactions, feedback takes hold and wildly complex and diverse forms emerge. These forms bifurcate, find relatively stable states and then, inevitably, collapse again. And Delanda insists that he is NOT speaking in metaphors - the same "diagrams" that lay riverbeds also build empires.

De Landa's method is problematic, controversial, and likely to turn some readers off. Since his ideas are vague, abstract, and probably untestable, many will call them unscientific. But the book is a sketch, a manifesto, a prologomenon to a new way of looking at the world. And, as such, it is extremely thought-provoking. One does not have to agree with De Landa's neo-Marxism to be stimulated when he argues that there is no "clash of civilizations," that there will never be an "end of history," and that the fundamental factor which distinguished the "West" from the "Rest" is not religion or technology but...um..."autocatalysis."

Ultimately, this is a very fun and eccletic little read that is likely to tweak your perspective more than a bit. Hayekians, especially, will be intrigued (though perhaps not persuaded) by his discussion of "anti-markets" and the VIRTUES (!) of top-down decisionmaking.

As a final note, some prior familiarity with Ilya Prigogine's work is very helpful for full enjoyment of this book. De Landa relies heavily on Prigogine's thermodynamics (the concepts, not the math), and he does a fairly poor job of introducing them. As a layperson, I found Schneider and Sagan's Into the Cool: Energy Flow, Thermodynamics, and Life a very helpful introduction.
64 of 69 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars T.S. Kuhn would have been pleased. 30 Oct 2001
By Luis Reyes - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Application of non-linearity to problems in the Natural (hard) Sciences is not a new concept, and it has long been known that the omission of these terms is what prevents most models from aquiring the complexity we see in real life. De Landa chronicles the development in this area as applied to Biology, a couple of branches in Physics and the Social Sciences, and links all his subjects in such an extraordinary way that the book is itself a meshwork, in the purest sense of Deleuze and Guattari. The historical tidbits are themselves amusing and informative, and thus make the reading quite enjoyable. This is just as well an exposition of the history of nonlinearity as it is a presentation of nonlinearity as culmination of any and all ongoing natural processes.
The book's greatest strength is the presentation of unusual concepts in a strangely clear and persuasive way. In fact, if you have picked Deleuze and Guattari's books and have discarded them as pseudophilosophical bull, as I once erroneuosly did, give them a go again after De Landa; you will be surprised.
Read it, and one day you may brag that you were well aware of the conceptual revolution that shook Science as a whole as the 21st Century began, well before it was fully on its way.
31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A really good book..... 25 Oct 2000
By J. Michael Showalter - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
De Landa's take on history is that it is a product of complexity and self-organization much more than we are prone to believe; in this book, he expands on and explodes from those of his (also) brilliant "War in the Age of Intelligent Machines".
The traditional metaphors for human progress that have been coopted from other sciences-- economics, geology, and engineering-- and do not adequately portray what exactly man hath wrought. In this book, De Landa works through history three seperate times and discusses-- through the use of terms like 'bifucation' and 'singularities' how he believes it did progress....
I really like this book: I think that it is definately a text whose time has come..... BUT.... having read both this and 'War...' I want to warn readers of their one failing-- the author-- because of his broad sweep-- seems to occasionally make errors in the myriad of references that he makes (the book is meticulously footnoted, to its credit). Though this is largely an editor's problem, it is bad.... something that someone who is going at things fast-and-furious and from a broad sweep is likely to have happen....
It doesn't blight the whole. This is a must read.... though fans of traditional disciplines might not find a whole lot to like about with it (and might find a lot more along the lines of my above point....)
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Revamp high school social studies 31 Aug 2001
By Adam Lilienthal - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
While reading this I couldn't help but wonder about the advantages to reformatting high school ciriculum with more attention paid to the nonlinear nature of things as presented in here. Forget dates and names and specific places - these things are forgotten anyway - De Landa is all about concepts and reasons why. From urban landscapes as human exoskeletons to the corporate drive to control our very genes this historical account is really an intense examination of the progress of matter-energy over the last one-thousand years as the term progress itself becomes questioned along with a great many other things. I recommend this book to those who have ever asked why - and those who never have. So get your hands on it, read it, read it again, and pass it along. There's not a disappointing page between its covers.
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a mind-reshaper 15 May 1999
By Howard Bloom - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Some people read books the way they settle into a favorite armchair--to feel comfortable in a familiar setting or genre. Others read to have the all-too-familiar worldview with which they've grown bored cracked open like a walnut so they can eat a form of intellectual meat they've never before imagined. For the folks who are continually discontented with old ideas and who feed with manic delight on new ones, De Landa's book is a must. Once you've read the first hundred pages, you'll find yourself living in a new geopolitical and historical world. one whose inner workings you now see through a pair of x-ray goggles.
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions
   


Look for similar items by category


Feedback