America Before: The Key to Earth’s Lost Civilization

by Graham Hancock

Stunning new archaeological discoveries in North America, notably in California and the Mississippi Valley, and in South America, notably in the Amazon rainforest, together with new genetic evidence, have launched a revolution in our understanding of the remote past of our species and of the origins of civilization. Apart from a few intriguing headlines, however, this revolution has been confined to academic conferences and the obscure pages of scientific journals, and the global public has not been well informed about the shattering implications of the latest research.

Until very recently it was believed that the Americas were amongst the last great landmasses on earth to have been inhabited by humans – who were thought to have arrived exclusively on foot from northeast Asia around 13,000 years ago by crossing the Bering Straits which formed a land-bridge to Alaska during the lowered sea-levels of the Ice Age. By contrast, anatomically modern humans, originating in Africa, are believed to have reached Europe, Asia, and even Australia, as far back as 60,000 years ago.

We now know that something of immense importance is missing from this long-established picture, and that the Americas were first peopled more than 130,000 years ago – many tens of thousands of years before human settlements became established elsewhere. Yet because of the dominance of the former – and now entirely discredited – theory of the late peopling of the Americas, and of mental blocks associated with that theory, scientists for too long focussed only on the ‘Old World’ in their search for the origins of civilization and have not considered the revolutionary possibility that those origins might in fact be found in the ‘New World’.

Was a technologically and spiritually advanced civilization destroyed in the global cataclysm that ended the last Ice Age? Graham Hancock, the internationally bestselling author whose controversial take on the past, once anathema to archaeologists, has been overwhelmingly vindicated by recent discoveries, has made it his life’s work to find out — and in America Before, he draws on the latest archaeological and DNA evidence to bring his quest to a stunning conclusion.

Hancock’s research takes us on a series of journeys and encounters with the scientists responsible for the recent extraordinary breakthroughs in this nuanced story. From the Mississippi Valley to the Amazon rainforest, ancient ‘New World’ cultures share a legacy of advanced scientific knowledge and sophisticated spiritual beliefs with supposedly unconnected ‘Old World’ cultures. Hancock follows the clues to their source in the devastated heartland of the lost civilization.

America Before: The Key to Earth’s Lost Civilization rewrites American history as we know it and is the culmination of everything that millions of readers have loved in Hancock’s body of work over the past decades, namely a mind-dilating exploration of the mystery of ancient civilizations, amazing archaeological discoveries and profound implications for how we lead our lives today.