The present volume is an attempt of an international research team to make a complex study in the social evolution processes in prehistory in their spatial and temporal variations. The authors hope that their survey can and should also promote a better understanding of the evolution from prehistoric bands to complex states and pre-industrial empires. The volume consists of five parts and 27 chapters. The first part includes theoretical studies of non- linear evolution. Articles on the alternative pathways of the prehistoric societies'' evolution form the volume''s second part. The evolutionary pathways of complex societies and state origins are the topics of the volume''s third and forth parts. The closing part is devoted to nomadic societies. We hope that the book has not lost its relevance since its first edition''s publication in 2000 and will remain in demand by readers.