Barbarians For Progress! Gregory Guzman, "Were theBarbarians a Negative or Positive Factor in Ancient and Medieval History?"
Temujin, aka Chinggis Khan• "The greatest pleasure is to vanquish your enemies and chase them before you, to rob them of their wealth and see those dear to them bathed in tears, to ride their horses and clasp to your bosom their wives and daughters."
Guzman’s Thesis• "In their conquests of civilized centers, they frequently destroyed and eliminated the old and outdated and preserved and passed on only the good and useful elements. ... Old and new practices and processes merged, and provided viable alternatives to the old, outdated civilized ways which had failed or outlived their usefulness. This fusion brought forth dynamic creativity and development."
Barbarian Rule• "The first century after the initial conquest was usually an era of dynamic leadership, good government and economic prosperity, as nomadic strengths mixed with the local advances and practices of that civilization ... low taxes, agricultural revival, and peace."
Other Advantages• New Trading Zones• Technology Transfer• Social Diversity
Questioning Guzman: Mongols?• Who benefits?• Destructive conquests of healthy societies• Racial hierarchies• Anti-foreign backlash• Pillage is not economic progress• Disease
Sources• Background: Yuan-era porcelain, Nelson- Atkins Museum, Kansas City (Picture by Jonathan Dresner)• Gregory Guzman, "Were the Barbarians a Negative or Positive Factor in Ancient and Medieval History?" in Kevin Reilly, Sources of World History, 2nd Edition, pp. 388-395.• Maps from Stearns, et al., World Civilization, 6th edition.• Temujin quote from Chabers, p.6.