Big history


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Big history

  1. 1. Big History<br />Jean Lowry<br />50607<br />
  2. 2. Big History…Cont’d<br />“Big History is a field of historical study that examines history on a large scale across long time frames through a multi-disciplinary approach, and gives a focus on the alteration and adaptations in human experience”<br />Arose from a desire to go beyond the specialized and self-contained fields that emerged in the 20th century and grasp history as a whole, looking for common themes across the entire time scale of history<br />
  3. 3. The Way We Are…<br />
  4. 4. The Way We Are…Cont’d<br />We are the way we are today because the human species was always thinking of how to make our lives better<br />In 1420 there was a new way of painting that allowed us to navigate to any land mass on earth<br />Geometry was discovered and we were able to build buildings and inventions to better our lives<br />Relates the beginning of history to our modern day world<br />
  5. 5. The Journey of Man…<br />
  6. 6. The Journey of Man… Cont’d<br />By analyzing DNA from people in all regions of the world, geneticist Spencer Wells concluded that all humans alive today are descended from a single man who lived in Africa around 60,000 years ago<br />Wells’s work and that of others confirms that all modern humans evolved in Africa and then left in several waves of migration, ultimately replacing any earlier species<br />Based on DNA in the Y-chromosome Wells indicated that the exodus of the H. sapiens began between 60,000 and 50,000 years ago<br />The Y-chromosome is passed on as a chunk of DNA from father to son, basically unchanged through generations except for random mutations called markers<br />Once a marker has been identified, geneticists can go back in time and trace it to the point at which it first occurred, which would be the most recent common ancestor<br />
  7. 7. The Journey of Man… Cont’d<br />Early travelers followed the southern coastline of Asia, crossed 155 miles of sea to colonize Australia by around 50,000 years ago being descendants of the first wave of migration out of Africa<br />The second wave of hominids left Africa around 45,000 years ago and settled in the middle east, while smaller groups went off to India and China<br />Isolated by mountains and the sea being exposed to a colder climate and less sunlight made the Asian population paler with time<br />Around 20,000 years ago a small group of central Asians moved farther north, into Siberia and the Arctic Circle<br />15,000 years ago a small group of the Arctic dwellers followed the reindeer across the Bering Strait land bridge into North America<br />
  8. 8. Catastrophe!<br />
  9. 9. Catastrophe!...Cont’d<br />In the mid sixth century, an event happened that caused the climate to change drastically<br />Studies done on tree rings indicate that during the years 535 – 541 A.D there was abnormal summer growth and extreme cold<br />Romans write an account of bizarre weather, where the sun shinned for only 4 hours of each day and that lasted for 18 months<br />If it were to have been a comet that caused the climate to change, the comet would have to be at least 6 kilometers or bigger<br />Evidence can be found in polar ice caps since they are directly related to climate change, sulfuric acid was found in samples from Greenland<br />To conclude that a volcano eruption was the cause for climate change ice caps from both hemispheres would have to contain sulfuric acid<br />The notorious volcano Krakatoa was believed to be what cause the climate to change due to a major eruption<br />
  10. 10. Catastrophe!...Cont’d<br />The Empire based in Constantinople describes something awful striking the Roman people in 542 AD<br />Bleeding from the eyes, swollen lymph glands, pain, and flowing bowels were the first examples of the Bubonic Plague<br />Caused by bacteria build up within a flea due to colder climates made them hungry and fed on anything, spreading the plague<br />Plague was believed to originate in Ethiopia, during the time where ivory was being traded, rats would be onboard the ships which then bought the plagued rats to Constantinople<br />Once the amount of dead reached a quarter of a million they stopped counting<br />
  11. 11. Guns, Germs, and Steel…<br />
  12. 12. Guns, Germs, and Steel… Cont’d<br />The title of the book is a reference to the means by which farm-based societies conquered populations of other areas and maintained dominance, despite sometimes being vastly out-numbered<br />Guns: Weapons provided immediate military superiority<br />Germs: Eurasian diseases weakened and reduced local populations, who had no immunity, making it easier to maintain control<br />Steel: centralized government promoted nationalism and powerful military organizations<br />Civilizations is not created out of superior intelligence, but is a result of a chain of developments, each made possible by certain preconditions<br />Eurasia gained an early advantage due to greater availability of suitable plant and animal species for domestication<br />Apart from the Eurasians, Native American farmers had to struggle to develop maize as a useful food from its probable wild ancestors, it provides few nutrients and must be planted one by one – an extremely cumbersome task <br />
  13. 13. Guns, Germs, and Steel… Cont’d<br />The rise of non-farming specialists such as craftsmen and scribes accelerated economic growth and technological progress<br />These advantages eventually enable Europeans to conquer the peoples of other continents<br />Eurasian’s dense populations, high levels of trade, and living in close proximity to livestock resulted in widespread transmission of diseases, like ones from animals to humans<br />Natural selection forced Eurasians to develop immunity to a wide range of pathogens<br />European diseases ravaged the indigenous American population <br />
  14. 14. The World and Trade…<br />
  15. 15. The World and Trade… Cont’d<br />People in the Eastern Hemisphere knew only the tripartite division of Europe, Asia, and Africa<br />These three continents constituted a great land mass surrounded by world ocean, which was strewn with islands both known and assumed<br />Greeks called this vast inhabited area the ecumene<br />In 1492 Turks and other Islamic peoples dominated a great swath of land from south of Spain across North Africa and down into Africa as far as Mozambique<br />First Muslims spread into the holy land and Persia from Arabia, they extended their dominion from India through southeast Asia and penetrated into China and the Philippines<br />Islam remained the only religion established throughout the length of the ecumene<br />China had stopped all exploration over seas because they believed it was to costly and there were no threat looming from the sea, instead they focused their attention to threats of invasion from the north and put all expenses into building the Great Wall<br />The destruction of Mayan civilization prevents us from learning of their society’s intellectual accomplishments, the books that remain tells us that the Mayans had one of the most artistic and refined societies on the globe<br />
  16. 16. The World and Trade… Cont’d<br />Spanish sailors carried potatoes to the Philippines, warding off scurvy<br />Potatoes were considered to be second-class food<br />Potato entered the Atlantic economy at its two extremes: as a luxury side-dish for Europe’s rich and as a staple for the enslaved Indians working the mines of Spanish Peru<br />Sugar began its march to global acceptance in the far east, the Arabs were the first great sugar cultivators; Egyptian sugar was regarded as the world’s finest<br />Sugar continued its westward march with the rise of the Ottoman Turks<br />All along the eastern lip of the Americas and scattered across the islands, natives smoked, cooked, licked, ate, and snorted tobacco<br />The tobacco trade brought with it the holocaust of slavery, the social cataclysms of civil war, and environmental devastation<br />Cacao was considered to be a stimulant, intoxicant, hallucinogen, and aphrodisiac<br />Warriors would count on cacao’s caffeine to steel them in battle<br />It also served as a cure for anxiety, fever, and coughs <br />Chocolate today is a sweet treat, and small indulgence<br />
  17. 17. Soucres<br />Documentary Films: The way we are, The Journey of man, Catastrophe, and Columbus & the age of discovery<br />"Documentary Redraws Humans' Family Tree." Daily Nature and Science News and Headlines | National Geographic News. Web. 20 July 2011. <>.<br />