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Ian Morris

Ian Morris

Jean and Rebecca Willard Professor of Classics
Faculty, Stanford Archaeology Center

Ian Morris is a historian and archaeologist. He has excavated in Britain, Greece, and Italy, most recently as director of Stanford's dig at Monte Polizzo, a native Sicilian site from the age of Greek colonization. He began his career studying the rise of the Greek city-state, then moved on to ancient economics, and now works on global history since the Ice Age. His book Why the West Rules--For Now (2010) was translated into thirteen languages, and his most recent publication, War! What is it Good For? (2014), into five. Princeton University Press will publish his next book, Foragers, Farmers, and Fossil Fuels: How Human Values Evolve,  in 2015. In addition to digging and writing, he gives regular talks to academic, business, government, and strategy groups, and has served at Stanford as chair of the Classics department, director of the Archaeology Center, and Senior Associate Dean of Humanities and Sciences. He has won a Dean's Award for excellence in teaching and a number of literary awards, and is a fellow of the British Academy and the Society of Antiquaries. He lives in the Santa Cruz Mountains with his wife, two dogs, seven cats, two horses, and a peacock.


April 2014
From Farrar, Straus and Giroux : “War! . . . . / What is it good for? / Absolutely nothing,” says the famous song—but archaeology, history, and...
January 2013
In the last thirty years, there have been fierce debates over how civilizations develop and why the West became so powerful. The Measure of...
October 2010
Sometime around 1750, English entrepreneurs unleashed the astounding energies of steam and coal, and the world was forever changed. The emergence of...
Ian Morris, Barry B. Powell
July 2009
Organized chronologically, this book presents a complete picture of Greek civilization as a history. It features sections on the art, architecture,...
January 2009
The world's first known empires took shape in Mesopotamia between the eastern shores of the Mediterranean Sea and the Persian Gulf, beginning around...
December 2007
In this, the first comprehensive one-volume survey of the economies of classical antiquity, twenty-eight chapters summarise the current state of...