Our received wisdom is that current civilization is the highest achievement of humanity, that we should feel lucky to be alive now, and that the future is going to be better. Along comes Christopher Ryan to debunk it all.
Progress, according to Ryan, is a lie. He makes the case in his book Civilized to Death: The Price of Progress. In the book, we're asked to consider if we really gained all that much: we don't worry about being eaten by other animals, but we do have to worry about dying in car wrecks.
There's much more, explored in a chat with the author.