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Ap World Ggs: Prologue

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Matt Vintis                                                                                              AP World GGS

Prologue

  1. Diamond starts his argument with the question 'Why is world history like an onion?'

1B) Diamond may have started his book with a question to provide a track for the reader to think along in order to answer the question

  1. Yali posed the question 'Why is it that you white people developed so much cargo and brought it to New Guinea, but we black people had little cargo of our own?' This question is still very relevant today, as to me, Yali's question seemed to imply that colored people have always gotten the short end of the stick, and people today may say the same thing.
  2. Diamond answers Yali's question in the prologue, stating that this imbalance between colored and white people may have resulted from different rates of development in different continents, I agree with this answer, as black people could have easily become the more technologically and politically advanced people had they developed these aspects faster then whites, and would have been the ones to dominate the Europeans and Asians, instead of the other way around.
  3. Diamond challenges the explanation of differences among human societies that states these differences come from innate ability by saying there is no evidence to support this.

I mostly agree with Diamond about the fact that differences in societies do not come from genetics, making one race simply smarter than another, not only because there is no evidence to support this, but also we are all one species, and there is no genetic difference between a black man and an Asian man, they are both simply men.

I mostly disagree with Diamond about the fact that he believes that New Guineans are smarter then westerners, inherently, because, as I said before, there is no genetic difference between any two races.

Collision at Cajamarca

      1.   Diamond explained that Pizarro defeated the Incan emperor Atahualpa because this defeat was             decisive for the European conquest of the Incan Empire

  1. The Spanish conquest of thew Inca supports the fact that the Spanish, although few in numbers, conquered more territory than has ever been known before.
  2. Diamond uses historical anecdotes to support his claims, as they provide a more personal, first hand experience of the conquests.
  3. The American Revolution. This is a time when the far less developed Americans conquered the superpower of the British, this casts doubt on Diamonds theory that it is the superiority of technology that leads to success in wars, since the Americans, with all odds stacked against them, won.

I mostly agree with Diamond about the fact that the Spanish had very little chance of defeating the Inca, as they were much fewer in numbers, less advanced technologically, and could not receive reinforcements.

I mostly disagree with Diamond about the fact that wars will likely be won by the more advanced society, I believe that having more courageous soldiers, and the 'home-court' advantage are more crucial to winning a battle then any technology.

History's Haves and Have-nots

  1. Some areas of the world developed food production at different rates because some areas were simply better suited for the crops that were most early domesticated, and once said crops had been domesticated, they were imported to other civilizations, which proceeded to develop and expand the domestication and types of crops.
  2. Diamond is concerned with this subject because it seems that areas which would not have been suitable for crop domestication were the first to domesticate, and others, which would have been ideal, were thousands of years behind.
  3. This suggests that some societies in the neolithic era were far ahead of others ion terms of advancement in agriculture.

I agree with all Diamond said in this chapter, as it is mostly fact-based and there is little opinion involved. To provide an example, I very much agree with his statement that there were complications in cases of same animal and plant domestication in different places, as the evidence shown shows me that some places were not suited for the domestication of certain plants and animals, whereas other places, sometimes all the way around the globe, were the ideal locations for these domestication.

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