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Gus germs and steel

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Introduction

Prologue Tyler Henry 1. Yali asks Diamond, "Why is it that you white people developed sp much cargo and brought it to New Guinea, but we black people had little cargo of our own." 2. Jared Diamond's thesis seems to be that external factors such as geography can affect the fate of human societies. In other words, what separates the winners from the losers is geography. Chapter 1 1. "The Great Leap Forward" is when human history developed about 50,000 years ago. 2. The giant moas in New Zealand and the giant lemurs in Madagascar were exterminated by humans. 3. 15,000 years ago the American West looked like Africa's Serengeti Plains. It was filled with elephants, giraffes, zebras, and other African animals. All of these animals living in the American West were either killed off by Clovis hunters or died due to drought. 4. All of the giant animals residing in Africa were able to survive because there were no extreme weather conditions and there were not nearly as many deadly hunters in Africa as there were in America. Chapter 3 1. Pizzaro's capture of Atahuallpa "offers a broad window onto modern history" because it has happened many times since then. 2. Technology, or the guns and the steel, was used in exterminating the Incas. ...read more.

Middle

This is the same for animal diseases. 3. Agriculture and the domestication of animals caused serious diseases. Agriculture diseases were because of the rodent droppings from the rats that are after the sewage from the farmers. Animal diseases were from the bacteria that grow on the animals. 4. The New World germs did not affect the Spaniards because the only animal that the New World had was the llama which had not been known to contract any diseases. 5. Jared Diamond refers to the lethal gift of livestock as a collision because the Old World germs collided with the New World germs making all of the residents of the New World sick. Chapter 12 1. Jared Diamond refers to the development of writing as an "agent of conquest" because it provided communication during expeditions. It also provided written accounts of expeditions to motivate later fleets. 2. Many societies did not develop a writing system because of the difficulty that it takes to make one. The societies that did make one spent years making theirs. 3. Writing was able to spread to Ethiopia and Arabia from the Fertile Crescent because there were no geographical boundaries between the two are there were from Mexico to the Andes. Chapter 13 1. The "Phaistos Disk" was significant because it was stamps on clay where as most other societies used paper and ink. ...read more.

Conclusion

3. Africa's agriculture first arose in its Saharan Desert which, between 9000 and 4000 B.C. was filled with many lakes and full of wild game. Many people do not believe that a desert like the Sahara was once fertile. Epilogue 1. Jared Diamond's answer to Yali's question is that differences between the ways that societies develop are determined by the environment not by genetics or family history. 2. I agree with Jared Diamond's answer because of the facts that he presented in his book. Anyone that doesn't agree with his conclusion would have to present a very good reason as to why they don't agree. 3. Of guns, germs, or steel, I would have to say that the most decisive factor would be the germs. A good example is Smallpox; the virus alone killed more people than either guns or steel. 4. The East lost its enormous lead to the West (Europe) because Europe developed a merchant system, capitalism, and patent protection for invertors. Europe also did not have a dictatorship like China, so inventors in Europe were worry free. 5. China lost its technological lead to Europe because they were a dictatorship and had high taxations. 6. China's connectedness became a disadvantage for them because their fertile crescent had no other geographical advantages other than domesticating wild plants and animals. China also had an absolute despot that was controlling the country. 7. The histories of the Fertile Crescent and China hold important lessons for the modern world including ...read more.

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