Being a Human: Adventures in 40,000 Years of Consciousness

Charles Foster turns hunter-gatherer in amiable rekindling of early thoughts and feelings

“Hunter-gatherers were wanderers, intimately, reverently and often ecstatically connected to lots of land and many species. They lived long and relatively disease-free lives and there is little evidence of human-human violence.”

“Hunter-gatherers were wanderers, intimately, reverently and often ecstatically connected to lots of land and many species. They lived long and relatively disease-free lives and there is little evidence of human-human violence.”

A few years ago, the writer, barrister and traveller Charles Foster tried to become an animal. In Being a Beast, published in 2016, he documented his attempts to live as a badger in the woods. 

Being a Human is a continuation of this exploration into the other and, by default, the self. Foster turns the lens on his own species, setting out to become an Upper Palaeolithic hunter-gatherer, a Neolithic farmer and an Enlightenment brain in a bid to understand our contemporary reflexes, our desires, the way we think and feel. This is, he tells us, because these ages still rule us.

The Irish Times
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