Active Themes Diamond describes his experiences as an anthropologist in New Guinea. These conditions are not reproduced in most other parts of the world; Diamond has a range of interesting tables, showing how few useful domesticable species there are elsewhere.
It surveys 39 traditional small-scale societies of farmers and hunter-gatherers with respect to how they deal with universal human problems. Agriculture[ edit ] Guns, Germs, and Steel argues that cities require an ample supply of food, and thus are dependent on agriculture.
Eurasian grains were richer in protein, easier to sow, and easier to store than American maize or tropical bananas. There, he met all sorts of brilliant New Guinean people.
Western Europe also benefited from a more temperate climate than Southwestern Asia where intense agriculture ultimately damaged the environment, encouraged desertificationand hurt soil fertility.
Instead, he discovers, native Americans fell victim to European germs — infections which they had never encountered before. It asks why Eurasian peoples conquered or displaced Native Americans, Australians, and Africans, instead of vice versa.
Find out more about Episode Three. Of the remaining nine, only two the llama and alpaca both of South America are indigenous to a land outside the temperate region of Eurasia. Only twelve years before Cajamarca, Cortes and his men had faced similar odds against the vast army of the Aztec Empire.
Many who benefit personally from the continued burning of oil and coal—from oil giants to car-engine manufacturers—are resisting attempts to shift to an economy based on renewable resources. The Evolution and Future of the Human Animal part four. In contrast, American farmers had to struggle to develop corn as a useful food from its probable wild ancestor, teosinte.
Over the course of a generation, the Spaniards killed tens of thousands more. Diamond discovers a repository of dirty tricks at Salamanca — a collection of handbooks for would-be conquistadors.
Why did the Europeans conquer the Native Americans, Diamond asks, and not the other way around? Diamond believes that historians have over-emphasized the importance of culture without considering the scientific foundations of its origins among different peoples.
Success and failure[ edit ] Guns, Germs, and Steel focuses on why some populations succeeded.
Many people have argued that Europeans came to dominate the world because they were superior to other people. Farming arose early in the Fertile Crescent since the area had an abundance of wild wheat and pulse species that were nutritious and easy to domesticate.
Again, such an explanation is getting at an important truth—environment can shape society—but still relying on factually incorrect data. He claims that this view is largely eschewed by most academics.
Diamond has almost nothing to say about the political decisions made in order to pursue European imperialism, to manufacture steel and guns, and to use disease as a weapon. It seems an impossible task. While these thinkers may have been on the right track to argue that environment can shape society, their particular interpretation of such an idea has turned out to be factually wrong.
This included a technology even more critical to Spanish success than their weapons, writing. Geography had endowed Europe with rich sources of iron and wood, and a climate conducive to high-temperature metallurgy.
For more on Jared Diamond check the Diamond Tag. Two Empires Pizarro, leader of the Spanish conquistadors Spaniard Francisco Pizarro has gone down in history as the man who conquered the Inca.
After some initial victories, which Diamond lavishly describes, thousands of natives joined the tiny European garrisons. Due to the Anna Karenina principlesurprisingly few animals are suitable for domestication.
Like Guns, Germs, and Steel, Collapse was translated into dozens of languages, became an international best-seller, and was the basis of a television documentary produced by the National Geographic Society.
When Europeans made contact with the Americas, European diseases to which Americans had no immunity ravaged the indigenous American population, rather than the other way around the "trade" in diseases was a little more balanced in Africa and southern Asia: Rather, it was accidents of geography that facilitated the development of crops, and even pathogens that made it possible for them to do so.
Also watch my interview on Diamond with Cosmoetica posted July Part 3 studies the role of bacteria and microbes in Western military supremacy, while also studying the history of writing and other technologies.
After once labeling agriculture the Worst Mistake in the History of the Human Racethe idea that European superiority was all based in early agriculture seems curious. Diamond identifies six criteria including the animal being sufficiently docile, gregarious, willing to breed in captivity and having a social dominance hierarchy.
For an update, check out the Gun Control Podcast.So, when presented with a copy of the Bible on November 16th,Atahuallpa throws the alien object to the floor, prompting a furious. Guns Germs And Steel Essay Examples 11 total results The Importance of Food Production, Diet, and Domestication of Mammals in Jared Diamond's Guns, Germs, and Steel.
This is one of those books which seems at face value as if it has an interesting and persuasive thesis, and indeed there are a couple of reasonable points in here, but by and large Guns, Germs, and Steel is a poorly written book, 4/5.
Jared Diamond’s thesis in Guns, Germs, and Steel is that European economic, military, technological, and political power came about because of geographical luck, and not because the Europeans. LitCharts assigns a color and icon to each theme in Guns, Germs, and Steel, which you can use to track the themes throughout the work.
Geographic Determinism Racism, Violence, and Colonization. GUNS, GERMS, AND STEEL ESSAY Jared Diamond's novel, Guns, Germs, and Steel is a speculation about how and why the Europeans ended up being the main power in earlier times and conquered so much of the world.
Diamond wonders how the Europeans could have so much power and advanced technology while the rest of the world was .Download