A history of the social and cultural factors that led to our species’ development from primitive tribes to the modern world. Being an anthrpologist who spent many years living in tribal societies, Hallpike puts special emphasis on these tribes and devotes the first several chapters to them, but he also covers the development of the state, of religion, and then of science and industry.
I found the book a bit lopsided and certainly dense at times. However, the cultural observations were deep, and I found it especially insightful on the subject of primitive thought.
Relevant posts: Primitive thought