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What to expect

The remarkable story of how Nomads have fostered and refreshed civilisation throughout our history.

Moving across millennia, Nomads explores the transformative and often bloody relationship between settled and mobile societies. Often overlooked in history, the story of the umbilical connections between these two very different ways of living presents a radical new view of human civilisation. From the Neolithic revolution to the 21st century via the rise and fall of the Roman Empire, the great nomadic empires of the Arabs and Mongols, the Mughals and the development of the Silk Road, nomads have been a perpetual counterbalance to the empires created by the power of human cities.

Exploring the evolutionary biology and psychology of restlessness that makes us human, Anthony Sattin’s sweeping history charts the power of nomadism from before the Bible, to its decline in the present day. Connecting us to mythology and the records of antiquity, Nomads explains why we leave home, and why we like to return again. This is the history of civilisation as told through its outsiders.

(P) 2022 Hodder & Stoughton Limited

Critics Review

  • In a book of sensitivity and grace, Sattin does not just describe the nomadic way of life, but also evokes it . . . This is a book of beauty and beguiling rhythm that offers unsettling lessons about our present-day world of borders

    The Times
  • Thoughtful, lyrical yet ambitiously panoramic . . . As fleet and light-footed as its subject, it takes us along a dizzying path, over many of the highest ridges of human history . . . An important, generous and beautifully-written book

    William Dalrymple, author of The Anarchy
  • A fabulous piece of evocative writing, mixing personal stories with an epic sweep of history, the unique insight of location and an intimate connection to the subject. I loved it

    Jerry Brotton, author of A History of the World in Twelve Maps
  • Anthony Sattin’s Nomads spreads before us a sweeping panorama of nomadism
    that resonates through the past and echoes poignantly even in the present

    Colin Thubron, author of Shadow of the Silk Road
  • I was riveted by the shifts to nomadic culture, Sapiens-like, and by the feeling of learning lightly worn and deftly transmitted. This is a major book

    Roland Philipps, author of A Spy Named Orphan
  • The saga of the lost mobile cultures and empires that have impacted global history . . . a spirited defence of freedom of conscience, freedom of movement and migration, a romantic tribute to independence and to free spirit, and to being in tune with the rhythms of nature

    Marc David Baer, author of The Ottomans

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