No name seems more inextricably linked to the grand hemispheric experiment of "America" than Christopher Columbus. Seen alternately as explorer and conqueror, hero and villain, Columbus endures as an essential character in America's national story: his "discovery" of America in 1492 changed the course of history. Who better to interpret this undeniable influence than author Charles C. Mann? A correspondent for The Atlantic, Science, and Wired, Mann authored 1491, an award-winning study of the pre-Columbian Americas, and 1493: Uncovering the New World Columbus Created. Both of these books take a riveting look at the earliest days of globalization, introducing a new generation to the conundrum of the "New World." Mann shares an expansive and compelling vision of the "ecological convulsion" of European trade practices that continues to shape our world.
Slavery. Isn't it the most obnoxious notion? Was it really less noxious several centuries ago? I don't think so. People sacrifice their moral principles for economic gain. My grandmother was born in 1901. So, let's say her grandparents were born in 1800. That means slavery was alive and kicking with the entire disgusting apparatus only 5 generations ago. How odd to consider that cultural evolution on the one hand produces Bach, for example, and on the other produces slavery.
First' I enjoyed the lecture and am glad to see you not afraid to contradict what has been taught, but at the 53:40 mark the woman asks about the "native indians " being sent to Africa. The explanation makes no sense. Why do scholars go out of their way to pretend Africans had not already been in the Americas before any European expeditions? What do you think of the Olmecs, or as they called themselves, the Xi?
One must read historical sources and not hear say on a subject that requires a minimum of literacy. Hispanics with Columbus as Captain-General discovered America in 1492. In the case of Columbus his reputation as explorer was besmirched by what is called La Leyenda Negra much of it invented by rival European competitors to diminish the accomplisments of Hispanics as they became the first Europeans to explore the vastness of what Hispanics called Las Indias Occidentales later supplanted by the label America. Columbus crew - Florida Museum
What follows is a listing of crew members by vessel along with a ... H. Fuson, The Log of Christopher Columbus ... 8, 1492 to March 3, 1493 ...
It sound like the slash and burn method they used in north america might be what we in Finland call deciduous forest lash and burn. When you slash and burn forest you have to let the trees go back, so that you get nutrients etc back. to the ground. Maybe the "parks" where just forest that waited to be old enough to be slash and burned again.
After the you plant the crops what needs the most nutrients and next crop is what needs less. Normally you could harvest
three crops, after that the nutrient level is was so low that you had let the forest grow back and wait about 30-40 years to do the slash and burn again. Still you could get up to 10 times more crops that if you would make just normal field and whit less work.
Old finnish slah and burn video from 1937
+david smith not only did he address these things, his entire thesis has to do with explaining, without recourse to dramatic retelling or emotional appeal, HOW these things came about, what social, environmental, and economic conditions allowed these things to take place, and also HOW we have come to misunderstand all these historical events, many times purely in order to inflate our own, post-colombus western egos.
This is awesome, definitely my favorite author. I liked the question about contemporary natives and what they thought. His answer was so true, much respect to him. I dont think i'll read much of the physics books though lol
I'm amused that one would contend that a people as advanced as Mann suggests would have as a motivation for burning their forested areas the desire to sneak up on their prey in their moccasins. And putting the lie to burning in the forests by pointing to lots of old trees also indicate one who didn't read the book- small low fires don't kill mature trees.
Two quick points. One- sailors in the 1500s commented on the fires visible and the ash raining down in burning season; two- early European settlers/explorers commented on the large percentage of nut trees in the "primeval" forests. The "Indians" apparently practiced "agro-forestry," promoting the trees they wanted.
BS. Native americans burnt all the forests?how does congaree national park have so many old trees and great smoky mountains.Oh by the way any biologist can tell you animals effect forests , bison eat the shit out of anything,so do elk, open forests you bet,500 year old oaks and chestnuts with those massive herbivorous that will open the forests up.
13:40 Killing the insects was a byproduct and so was new vegetation. The real reason they burned the forest was to make it possible to silently walk, or stalk, up to prey animals. It was beneficial to have new growth to lure the animals in, and to kill the insects, but that was not why these hunters burned the leaf litter. Leaf litter is loud under foot, and every animal can hear you coming, if you eliminate the leaf litter then you can hunt better in a spot in stalk scenario.
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