I was a little hesitant going into reading this, as it seems like just a history of social structures, which can be dry. I thought from the title that it would have something to do with the Black Plague too, which was kind of misleading. I really enjoy the writing though. The way Huppert moves fluidly from one social structure to another is very interesting, and I think it’s fascinating to look at these different societies.
Sennely I think was the most fascinating of the towns. Everyone around them looked down on them as so unhealthy, but really they knew what they were doing, and sustained themselves better than most other towns. They understood the concept of population control. Cultures today don’t even get that. They consciously made an effort to not exceed the little amount of food they had. That whole section was really fascinating actually. It says a lot about the things they gave importance to; not happiness, not health, not love. Survival. Survival was the only thing that really mattered, and they ensured that generations would survive. Genius really, although not the most health-effective. But when you don’t live so long anyway, who cares?