insight

Nature 418, 700-707 (8 August 2002) | doi:10.1038/nature01019

Evolution, consequences and future of plant and animal domestication

Jared Diamond

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Domestication interests us as the most momentous change in Holocene human history. Why did it operate on so few wild species, in so few geographic areas? Why did people adopt it at all, why did they adopt it when they did, and how did it spread? The answers to these questions determined the remaking of the modern world, as farmers spread at the expense of hunter–gatherers and of other farmers.