【English/日本語】Read an English book📖英語の本を読もう📚Sapiens―chapter#7 Writing System

🇺🇸English✕ 上級日本語🇯🇵

英語でSapiens を読もう📖#7


For English learners!

Hello everyone, how’s your English learning journey going?😃 Reading an English book is sometimes a long journey. You might inadvertently stop if you are alone. But no worries. You are at the right place already. I would like to explore an English book here so that you can try reading the book with me. We are not alone. Let’s enjoy a fun time reading!

The book, which I picked up this time, is called Sapiens, published by Yuval Noah Harari. The Amazon Kindle link below allows you to read up to chapter 3. Today, I am covering chapter.7.

You can check out my recommending strategy of reading as well as a bit of information about this book with a link below.

Okay then, let’s get started📖






Ch.7 Memory Overload

第7章 書記体系の発明

Grasp the structure!🦧構成を把握する

To grasp the chapter, you just try to see its hierarchical configuration. I strongly recommend drawing it either physically or virtually.


Other animals
  • most of the information is encoded in the genome and passed by DNA.
  • Brain has been adapted to store and process only particular types of information, such as shapes, qualities, and behavior patterns: botanical, zoological, and topographical and social information.
  • Foragers were never obliged to handle large amounts of mathematical data, therefore it constrained the size and complexity of human collectives as relatively small and simple for thousands of years after the Agricultural Revolution.
  • Between 3,500 B.C. and 3,000 B.C., Sumerian invented a system for storing and processing information.

 🚧工事中 🚧

Partial script
  • A system of material signs that can present only particular types of information.
    • modern mathematical symbols
    • musical notation
    • Sumerian writing
    • Andean script
Full script
  • A system that write any kind of information.
    • Latin script
    • Egyptian hieroglyphics
    • Braille

➜The first text of history contained in humdrum economic documents was signed Kushim. If Kushim was a person, they may be the first individual in history whose name is known to us. (Between 3,500 B.C. and 3,000 B.C.)

 🚧工事中 🚧

  • by B.C. 2,500 in Mesopotamians: cuneiform
  • around 2,500 B.C. in Egyptians: hieroglyphics
  • around 1,200 B.C. in China
  • around 1,000 – 500 B.C. in Central America
What to write
  • poetry
  • history
  • books
  • romances
  • dramas
  • prophecies
  • cookbooks
  • storage of reams of mathematical data
Inventing good techniques of
  • Administrative archives grew to huge proportions. That required…
    • methods of organization like catalogues.
    • methods of reproduction like photocopy machines.
    • methods of rapid and accurate retrieval like computer algorithms.
    • studied and internalized techniques of cataloging, retrieving and processing information.
    • think in a non-human fashion

 🚧工事中 🚧

  • Before 9th century, it was invented.
  • Added several signs, such as for addition, subtraction, and multiplication.
  • Used to record and process data.
  • Some fields depends on it almost entirely, such as physics and engineering.
    • this thought process is taken process not in head but inside computers or on classroom blackboards.
  • It was born as maidservant of Sapiens but is increasingly becoming its master.
  • The artificial intelligence is seeking to create a new kind of intelligence based solely on the binary script of computers.

 🚧工事中 🚧

Summarize the chapter concisely🦧章を一言でまとめる

To summarize, check the hierarchical configuration and make sentences with important points of each.


As Sapiens has continued to grow their size of cities, they invented a writing system. It began with a partial script, then a full script was born. It gave Sapiens a different non-human way of thinking apart from free association and holistic thought. Now, the computerized binary script is throwing off the yoke of humanity.


Make five questions to discuss🦧5つの質問を作る

To discuss, make questions. It gives you a great topic to talk about in English.


Experiential question 経験の質問

How does this make me feel? What does it remind me of?

There are many correct answers that are related to one’s experience; they can be found outside of the text/speech.



  • Have you ever…?
  • Does it make you angry when…?
  • Which part did you like?
  • How hard was this to understand?

  • こんな経験ありますか
  • こんなとき、怒った気持ちになりますか
  • どのパートが気に入りましたか
  • これを理解するのは難しかったですか

My opinion:

I’ve never imagined it personally, however, considering the observation of how plants have successfully manipulated and domesticated Sapiens, it still remains the possibility that the computerized binary system can overcome the hegemony of humanity.



Expressions and terms🦧覚えておきたい単語・表現

Pick some terms that you are unfamiliar with from sentences you high-lightened and memorize them because you need them to discuss this chapter!!


termexample sentence
immenseThe human brain evolved to store immense quantities of botanical, zoological, topographical and social information.
mind-bogglingEvery piece of information spread and processed with mind-boggling speed and efficiency.
maidservantWriting was born as maidservant of human consciousness, but is increasingly becoming its master.
yokeScience-fiction movies tell of a story when the binary script throws off the yoke of humanity,
termexample sentence

In this chapter, how the writing system Sapiens invented in order to maintain their social network brought them another non-human way of thinking. It took so long to achieve to attain it. What if it were ever not invented? The planet would have been still sustainable?