Rereading: Philip Hoffman: Why Did Europe Conquer the World? http://amzn.to/2FCPUQh
From the best review of the book:
Dietz Vollrath (2015) Dumb Luck in Historical Development:
Philip Hoffman’s Why Did Europe Conquer the World? [is]... on its face, is another entry in a long line of... Western European... dominance... due to a rather specific characteristic: disease tolerance, or cows, or a knobbly coastline.... But Hoffman’s work is different... a model of learning-by-doing in gunpowder technology... only... if you actually fight.... Europe['s]... lead was not due to some unique European characteristic, but rather was luck of the draw.... Hoffman... saw a correlation between European states and higher firepower, but... was willing to accept that this correlation--while meaningful in giving Europe an advantage--did not necessarily imply some kind of deep structural advantage for Europe...