So Jared Diamond has a huge popular following, but anthropologists find him a bit... overly deterministic. He's essentially a socio-biologist, treating humans (and culture itself) like ants adapting to environmental stimuli. Sociobiology is a rich field-- not one I'd choose personally-- and once you obsess over structures in play, I can see how it's easy to erase human agency from the equation. That said, JD's evidence is a bit thin. I don't hate him as passionately as my fellow anthropologists do (I see what he's trying to do and find it somewhat commendable if inaccurate)
But here's some articles:
NPR on why JD pisses off anthropologistshttp://www.npr.org/sections/13.7/2013/01/14/169374400/why-does-jared-diamond-make-anthropologists-so-mad
Here's a survey of anti-JD articles (with links) on Reddit:https://www.reddit.com/r/AskAnthropology/comments/1rzm07/what_are_some_of_the_main_anthropological/
There's plenty on other factors in the literature he just ignores, but here's my favorite quote:
"What Diamond glosses over is that just because you have guns and steel does not mean you should use them for colonial and imperial purposes. Or handing out smallpox-infested blankets from sick wards...Second, Diamond’s account seriously underplays the alliances with native groups that enabled European forces to conquer and rule...The Jared Diamond of Guns, Germs, and Steel has almost no role for human agency–the ability people have to make decisions and influence outcomes. Europeans become inadvertent, accidental conquerors. Natives succumb passively to their fate."
That quote comes from this article "Real History vs. Guns, Germs and Steel":http://www.livinganthropologically.com/anthropology/guns-germs-and-steel/
I'm actually a lot more sympathetic to JD than any of these guys, but I thought I should just make you all aware of the opposition.
PS-- speaking of eco-dystopia have any of you watched the 100? I think I'm gonna make a post on it rn, this grimdark JD stuff has inspired me to do that.