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Big History
Big History
Big History
Big History
Big History
Big History
Big History
Big History
Big History
Big History
Big History
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Big History


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  • 1. How Big is “big History”?
    HIST 140
    Summer 2011
    By: Le Thi My Ho
  • 2. What is “Big History?”
    The desire to go beyond the specialized and self-contained fields that emerged in the 20th century during the Cold War and Space Race, and grasp history as a whole, looking for common themes across the entire time scale of history, from the Big Bang to modernity
    Uses a multi-disciplinary approach from the latest findings, such as biology, astronomy, geology, climatology, prehistory, archaeology, anthropology, cosmology, natural history, andpopulation and environmental studies
  • 3. The Day the Universe Changed Change Happens Everyday, Everywhere
    • The knowledge of the universe comes from the past, from different time with different problems but still affecting us
    • 4. We try to take the universe apart, we are curious, to ask questions and to change what we don’t like
    The things we do are based on what we know and the reason we are different today is because what we know is different
    If WE ARE WHAT WE KNOW then we will pass it on to the next generation and we ask them to answer questions even though it has already been answered and to test that, we give them test to reassure ourselves to make sure the knowledge and answer hasn’t failed us.
    Base on the change we invent modern technologyand science
    • How our modern world is made up of answers and we hold on to it and influencing the way we are
    Every culture, tribe, nation, group, ideology, country have this: a defense boundary, where we keep our secret and we defend that idea to death to keep it alive
    • Why are we so attached to what and who we are – is it for freedom, life, liberty and/or pursuit of happiness?
  • The Journey of Man through the eyes of Scientist, Dr. Spencer Wells
    Mankind has been searching for order, settlement, for peace and law, inrestlessness, a quest for new resources, more hospitable climates, basically desire for possession since the beginning of time
    It is these desires that drove the 1st man out of Africa ~60,000 years ago and across the world, and they continue to drive their ancestors to this day, genetically proven by scientist
    All the cultures of all the races of the world have been the creations of prolonged periods of migration - an important part of enlarging existing empires and conquering new ones
    When new empires were formed, it created new opportunities; different people, cultures, languages come together and new ones emerged; knowledge was exchanged; technology was shared
  • 5. Dr.SpencerWellsfound the missing puzzle that connects us to as one, under the same African skin; as brothers and sisters; separated by 2000 generations
    From these 4 regions, the key were found in 4 DNAs:
    Arizona – Navajo Indian
    Russians Far East – Chukchi Reindeer Herder
    Crossroads Central Asia – Mixture of Mongolian, Caucasian, Black Features
    Australia - Australian Aborigines
    The journey our ancestors started years ago is complete
  • 6. Catastrophe - What violently changed our world to uncover the secrets of the dead?
    • Nature becomes the enemy of all humanity-everything changed
    • 7. Current research indicates worldwide changes to the environment around early to mid 6th century
    • 8. The domino effect would have changed civilizations forever
    • 9. The pyroclastic cloud caused an ice age and set the world into the dark ages
    • 10. Speculation of the eruption of the Krakatau volcano could have been the cause of the major change throughout the world
    • 11. Sun grew dark, clouds dusted the earth, rained, cold reaped the land for 2 yrs then it dried, famine, disease effected the entire world and course of human history
    • 12. Earth no longer produce fruit that cultivated; no tree bore fruit and very few fish were found in the sea
  • 1500 yrs age – An extreme happen to world climate – terrified those who witnessed it
    • During the time of the dark ages in Europe
    • 13. The sun only shines 4hrs each day for 8 months recorded during the Roman empire in 545 AD
    • 14. The ice/glaciers shows that there are high sulfuric evidence in the water means that it was due from a spectacular volcanic eruption
    • 15. Without water, sunlight, and food brought famine and diseases
    • 16. Disease from rats and mosquitoes plagued and killed many people in Europe and Roman Empire
    • 17. Annual tree rings growth tells the weather was extremely cold during the 6th century: a winter frost, reduce sunlight, decrease in crop
    535 disturbs the status quo and allows history to reform itself all over the world it is the interface between the ancient world and the world we live today
  • 18. Guns, Germs, and Steel - traces humanity's journey over the last 13,000 years – from the dawn of farming at the end of the last Ice Age to the realities of life in the twenty-first century
    Lays a foundation for understanding human history
    How chance advantages can lead to early success in a highly competitive environment
    With the advancement of human ingenuity, and things like the granary and cultivation around 11,500 yrs ago, the human race was beginning to expand in population
    All great civilizations had some things in common: Advanced technology, large populations, and well organized work force
  • 19. Guns, Germs, and Steel - where geography ensured that different societies around the world would develop at different speeds
    • The development of successful and productive farming, starting nearly 12,000 years ago in the Fertile Crescent, was the critical turning point in the origins of global inequality
    • 20. Successful farming provides a food surplus, and allows some people to leave the farm behind and develop specialized skills – such as metal-working, writing, trade, politics, and war-making; to the discovery of gunpowder, steel, copper, diamonds and gold
    • 21. European farmers: rearing cattle, pigs, sheep, goats, horses and donkeys, lived in close proximity with their animals - breathing, eating and drinking animal germs. Eventually some diseases crossed over to the human population and the resulting epidemics wiped out millions of Europeans
    • 22. We can only achieve a better future if we have a more comprehensive understanding of our past. Only by recognizing the role which geography, and our environment, have played in our history, can we begin to overcome today's problems
  • Jared Diamond: 4 Sets of Differences That Affect the Trajectories of Human Societies:
    1St Set: Continental Differences in the Wild Plant and Animal Species
    2nd Set:Rates of Diffusion and Migration Within Continents
    3rd Set: Diffusion Between Continents
    4th Set: Continental Differences in Area or Total Population Size
  • 23. The World and Trade "Although the Earth is carved into mountains and valleys, which are the cause of its imperfect roundness, it may be considered round, and this explains why lunar eclipses caused by the Earth's projected shadow appear round, for this reason we say that the Earth is round."
    The Eastern and Western Hemispheres suddenly came into contact with each other for the first time in 1492 by Columbus expedition; where and when the unification of the globe connects with a single human community
    All four great centers of civilization had elaborate bureaucratic structures, significant cities, iron implements, writing, and high technology
    • Europe used commerce, ship technology, and firepower to forge ahead with exploration
    Different methods of agriculture shaped these societies in various ways:From the new world came things like potatoes, corn, tomatoes, and sugar; From the old world came wheat, horses, cattle, and technologies
    • Due to the intensive cultivation of the three staple foods: wheat, rice and corn, at the end of the fifteenth century, China, the Mediterranean community, and the Americas accounted for three-quarters of the globe's population
    • 24. As the world economy made them valuable, the introduction of new foods no doubt had these social uses for millennia, only the transportation revolution of the sixteenth century caused these foods to occupy an important place in international trade
    • 25. When Spain conquered much of the Americas, the excitement in Europe was over silver and gold. As other Europeans followed, interest turned to exotic agricultural exports. Tobacco, coffee, cocoa, sugar: all New World crops
    • 26. Huge plantations were cleared, slaves imported, companies chartered, royal monopolies created, fortunes made and lost