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Lecture 1 - What is History / Civilization / Globalization ?

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HUMA 1770
William Gleberzon

Lecture 1 1 May 2nd, 2011 What is history? - The record of past events that make up history, however, is incomplete - Record what they think is significance - Oral tradition = incomplete, misleading (because the stories people tell them) - Artifacts = using writing for 5000 years + - Medium it is written on (how long paper takes to be destroyed, stones) - History is select (what is important to be remembered and how did we talk about it) Shaped by Culture and Power - What was important at that time - Victory history Forgotten - Mistakes that were made - Understand the past, if we want to understand where we are now History as a Human Venture - Collective struggles of people, how they struggle together to achieve goals - Made by human beings = human agency, not puppets, might we can affect the world - Taking chances (tired of this situation and want to change it) - Might not succeed (democracy uprising isn’t successful in all countries) - No guarantees, no obvious ends to all of these particular struggles - Human agency = there is a purpose to all this What is Civilization? - City based, larger communities who have the wealth/surplus in the ability in the individual to escape labour - Human beings away from hunter-gatherer people to society where improvements in ability to grow food (agricultural revolution) – transformed how human lived o Allowed development of surplus wealth, grow more than what you can eat o Trade = people developed, that allows them to do that - Not civilized = barbarians (outsiders, alien, not one of us) - Political institutions form rules to organize people together to accomplish greater things - Human culture only possible if there’s enough wealth - “single system of administration
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