History

High Culture, Religion, Philosophy and Esoterica.
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Apollonius
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Re: History

Post by Apollonius » Sat Jan 09, 2021 1:11 pm

We see the same thing here. In the area I live in agriculture was unknown. In fact the bow and arrow had only been introduced relatively recently, some 20,000 years after it first appeared in Europe.

neverfail
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Re: History

Post by neverfail » Sat Jan 09, 2021 4:21 pm

Apollonius wrote:
Sat Jan 09, 2021 1:11 pm
We see the same thing here. In the area I live in agriculture was unknown. In fact the bow and arrow had only been introduced relatively recently, some 20,000 years after it first appeared in Europe.
Interesting Apollonius. Would you care to reveal the approxinate area where you live?

In the country where I live the bow and arrow was NEVER introduced at all. (Well, not until the British colonisers introduced them for the sake of recreational archery - but of course that does not count.) :D

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Apollonius
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Re: History

Post by Apollonius » Sat Jan 09, 2021 5:04 pm

I live in coastal British Columbia.

The indigenous peoples lived from marine resources (fish, molluscs, cetaceans) supplemented to a very limited extent by hunting wild game. I'm not at all happy with pc and factually very incorrect stuff you typically find on the internet about Canada's first peoples but I am an enthusiastic reader of serious ethnographies, histories, archaeology, and studies in the historical linguistics of the area in which I live.

If I were to point to just two books on the subject worth getting acquainted with they would be:

Peoples of the Northwest Coast: Their Archaeology and Prehistory by Kenneth H. Ames and Herbert D.G. Maschner (Thames & Hudson, 1999)


Like most books coming from Thames & Hudson this book is intended for a general audience even though the authors are experts and make no attempt to dumb down their material. It's a fine introduction.


and:


Handbook of North American Indians. Volume 7, The Northwest Coast edited by Wayne Suttles (Smithsonian Institution, 1990)


I only mention volume seven of this mammoth undertaking, but each one is the starting point for serious discussion of any particular native North American culture. The designation "handbook" is obviously an archivist's idea of a joke. It is actually fairly difficult to hold even one volume in your hand, each of which contains something like seven hundred densely packed pages, and there are about thirty volumes in all. Each chapter is written by a specialist in the field. This series constitutes the basic reference source on the subject. Wayne Suttles, the editor of the volume seven, which covers the Northwest Coast cultural area, was my anthropology professor.

There is so much in these books that you can't possibly absorb more than a tiny fraction. Even when you restrict yourself to one cultural area, the detail can be overwhelming, but if you really love the subject, this is where to start.

neverfail
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Re: History

Post by neverfail » Sun Jan 10, 2021 12:51 pm

Apollonius wrote:
Sat Jan 09, 2021 5:04 pm
I live in coastal British Columbia.

The indigenous peoples lived from marine resources (fish, molluscs, cetaceans) supplemented to a very limited extent by hunting wild game. I'm not at all happy with pc and factually very incorrect stuff you typically find on the internet about Canada's first peoples but I am an enthusiastic reader of serious ethnographies, histories, archaeology, and studies in the historical linguistics of the area in which I live.
Nice part of the world Apollonius.

I believe that before white settlement approx. one half of Canada's indigenous population lived in British Colombia.

The reason for this standout demographic density was apparently the annual salmon runs. The local indians it seems had a method of expanding the population to streams where there had apparently not been salmon before by transferring salmon eggs to these formerly barren streams. Since adult salmon always return to their place of birth to spawn over time they had expanded the salmon catch considerably. Clever!

Since salmon can be preserved and stored for future consumption by smoking them the BC Indians had a food resource so reliable that it was as effective as neolithic agriculture if not more so. Hunting and food gathering elsewhere in Canada could not compare or compete.

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Apollonius
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Re: History

Post by Apollonius » Sat Feb 06, 2021 7:21 pm

The Northwest Coast is often portrayed as bountiful, but their were good fishing spots and bad ones. And there were good years and bad ones.

In the chapter in his book which explains the differences between open and closed slavery, Leland Donald explains:

All Northwest Coast groups exploited (by fishing, gathering, or hunting) a wide range of resources. But for most groups the most important resource was the Pacific salmon. Because salmon are anadromous and because they follow fairly predictable cycles, they are both plentiful and easy to obtain at certain places and at certain times of the year [author's emphasis]. This means that although the resource base offers great opportunities, it does so under quite circumscribed conditions. Most of the other resources of great importance to one or another local group are also either spatially or temporally (often both) circumscribed. Northwest Coast resources thus conform to the "scarcity" type, which, if Watson is correct, leads us to expect closed slavery, and this is what we have found.

-- Leland Donald, Aboriginal Slavery on the Northwest Coast of North America (University of California Press, 1997)



N.B. The 'closed-slavery' system Donald refers to is the type in which slavery is hereditary, i.e., 'adoption' is absent and the children of slaves are slaves.

Jim the Moron
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Re: History

Post by Jim the Moron » Sat May 29, 2021 9:48 pm

Apollonius wrote:
Sat Feb 06, 2021 7:21 pm
The Northwest Coast is often portrayed as bountiful, but their were good fishing spots and bad ones. And there were good years and bad ones.

In the chapter in his book which explains the differences between open and closed slavery, Leland Donald explains:

All Northwest Coast groups exploited (by fishing, gathering, or hunting) a wide range of resources. But for most groups the most important resource was the Pacific salmon. Because salmon are anadromous and because they follow fairly predictable cycles, they are both plentiful and easy to obtain at certain places and at certain times of the year [author's emphasis]. This means that although the resource base offers great opportunities, it does so under quite circumscribed conditions. Most of the other resources of great importance to one or another local group are also either spatially or temporally (often both) circumscribed. Northwest Coast resources thus conform to the "scarcity" type, which, if Watson is correct, leads us to expect closed slavery, and this is what we have found.

-- Leland Donald, Aboriginal Slavery on the Northwest Coast of North America (University of California Press, 1997)



N.B. The 'closed-slavery' system Donald refers to is the type in which slavery is hereditary, i.e., 'adoption' is absent and the children of slaves are slaves.

While all this is quite interesting, I had hoped for a more expansive discussion of history -thinking Edward Gibbon, Theodor Mommsen, and J B Bury (a personal favorite) - stacked against a wonderful array of recent historian weltanschauung . What I had specifically hoped for were thoughts on how current matters would be written up as accepted history in the future.

Ellen
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Re: History

Post by Ellen » Sat May 29, 2021 11:19 pm

History is usually written by the winners in conflicts of "historic" stature.

In that spirit, who will be the winners in today's historic conflicts? Will there actually be any winners?

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Apollonius
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Re: History

Post by Apollonius » Mon Jun 07, 2021 4:53 pm

Jim the Moron wrote:
Sat May 29, 2021 9:48 pm
While all this is quite interesting, I had hoped for a more expansive discussion of history -thinking Edward Gibbon, Theodor Mommsen, and J B Bury (a personal favorite) - stacked against a wonderful array of recent historian weltanschauung . What I had specifically hoped for were thoughts on how current matters would be written up as accepted history in the future.


I highly recommend The Collapse of Complex Societies by Joseph A. Tainter (Cambridge University Press, 1988) for a general discussion of the decline of highly organized civilizations.

In almost every case we see increasing levels of corruption, lower fertility, oppressive taxes, and especially and seemingly universally present, rampant inflation.

Looks like we're headed in that direction again.

neverfail
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Re: History

Post by neverfail » Mon Jun 07, 2021 6:03 pm

Apollonius wrote:
Mon Jun 07, 2021 4:53 pm
Jim the Moron wrote:
Sat May 29, 2021 9:48 pm
While all this is quite interesting, I had hoped for a more expansive discussion of history -thinking Edward Gibbon, Theodor Mommsen, and J B Bury (a personal favorite) - stacked against a wonderful array of recent historian weltanschauung . What I had specifically hoped for were thoughts on how current matters would be written up as accepted history in the future.


I highly recommend The Collapse of Complex Societies by Joseph A. Tainter (Cambridge University Press, 1988) for a general discussion of the decline of highly organized civilizations.

In almost every case we see increasing levels of corruption, lower fertility, oppressive taxes, and especially and seemingly universally present, rampant inflation.

Looks like we're headed in that direction again.
I don't know about this other shit but we had rampant inflation back in the mid to late 1970's and into the 1980's yet they brought that under control.

Ellen
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Re: History

Post by Ellen » Mon Jun 07, 2021 9:54 pm

It isn't the macro-economic indicators that are causing the decline of complex civilizations, but rather moral decay and the loss of values and cultural norms. One can define these items in whatever way one chooses (eg, what desirable values are being lost depends on one's perspective), but this is how great civilizations fall, in my view, not because of inflation or unemployment.

American society did not unravel in the 1930's even during a deep depression. Nor did it's stablity decline perceptibly during the 1970's-80's during a period of stagflation. Today, the economic indicators at the gross or average level actually look quite good in the US. There is no sense of panic among the leading financial figures in the Biden adiministration.

Meanwhile, at lower levels of the society, things look and sound grim. In the universities, intellectual life is being extinguished. The study of Greek and Latin has been abolished at Yale because of supposed racism. Will the English language be next? How will people communicate....in made-up languages? We already have a made up language called Political Correctness, which has destroyed the meaning of many words and phrases. A new Dark Ages is emerging, in which an Ivy League degree will not be an asset. Being able to use weapons and command a loyal militia may be more useful.

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