GGR329 Final Exam Questions.doc

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Pierre Desrochers

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GGR329 PAST EXAM QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS 12. What were the main advantages of horses over llamas? What are the main qualities that Spaniards were looking for in a sword? How were these qualities achieved? • The horse was fundamental to the farming success of Eurasian societies provided not only food and fertilizer but also, crucial, load-bearing power and transport transforming the productivity of the land. • The Inca relied on llamas for meat, wool and fertilizer but the llama was not a load-bearing animal. Llamas can't pull a plow, nor can they transport human beings. • The main qualities that Spaniards were looking for were stronger, longer, sharper swords, toughness, hardness; sword to have certain pliability: an ability to bend and spring back into shape. • qualities were achieved via metal-working technology which had evolved from the simplest ore-extraction of the first Neolithic villages, to the highly- sophisticated forging of steel, in cities like Toledo and Milan plunging it into cold water, immense amount of experimentation,. Geography had endowed Europe with rich sources of iron and wood, and a climate conducive to high-temperature metallurgy 16. Why did Diamond once argued that agriculture was bad for human health (at least compared to the type of food collected by hunter-gatherers)? What are the main counter-arguments used by people who argue that the hunting-gathering lifestyle was not superior to farming? According to these latter people, why would hunting-gathering people remain stable over time? Why agriculture is bad for health? (14:00 mins) 1. Diet (cheap calories but poor nutrition) a. H-G: varied diet = better nutrition b. Early farmers: 1 or few starchy crops 2. Greater risk of starvation if crop failure 3. Crowding: living with large animals spread of parasites and infectious diseases But Backlash… - Very low birthrate - High death rate (40% children died < 15) - Infanticide and senicide - Very high homicide rate GGR329 PAST EXAM QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS - Life expectancy (20 < X < 29) H-G populations stable because - Low meagerness of resources - Low fat intakes Might have resulted in - Low birth rate - Spontaneous abortions because not enough food to support baby 25. In Diamond's opinion, why is an east-west continental axis preferable to a north-south continental axis? Advantages of East-West Axis Same latitude: - Same day length - Seasonal variations (To a lesser degree) Similar - Diseases - Regimes of temperature and rainfall - Habitats or biomes (types of vegetation) 18. Draw Jared Diamond's schematic overview of the chains of causation leading up to proximate historical factors from ultimate historical factors (or, in other words, the factors underlying the broadest patterns of history). GGR329 PAST EXAM QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS GGR329 PAST EXAM QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS 27) Why does H. F. Dobyns argue that the first Europeans who moved inland into the Americas encountered recently depopulated landscapes? Why are some scholars critical of the high numbers of then recently diseased people put forward by Dobyns? Dobyns Key arguments:- • Diseases swept from coastlines to inland areas. • First Europeans would often have encountered depopulated areas. • Disease preceded European explorers into Americas; therefore disease had already eliminated most inhabitants a few decades before. Some scholars critical b/c: • Smallpox spreads very slowly and not very far, given that the victim is unable to move. • There are different strains of smallpox in Americas perhaps it wasn’t the deadliest. • Early accounts not written by first hand witnesses. • There were local American disease cocolitzlie plague. 28. What are the diverse ways by which microbes spread from one person to another, and from animals to people? Why should a germ evolve the apparently self-defeating strategy of killing its host? 1) Wait for their hosts to be eaten by other hosts (e.g. Salmonella bacteria in meat) 2) Hitchhiking, insects to humans, In saliva of insect that bites the host and flies off to find a new host (Malaria, plague, Typhus, Sleeping sickness) From mother to fetus(syphilis, rubella, Aids.) 3) Modify habits of hosts to facilitate transmission, Genital sores –Syphilis, Skin Lesions – smallpox(through blankets), Cough sneezing- influenza and common cold, Diarrhea – Cholera, Biting Frenzy – Rabies. 4) Attack the host directly, Hookworms, and schistosomes. Germs evolve the self defeating strategy the answer is that it is an unintended by product of host symptoms promote efficient transmission of microbes. 29. How do humans physiologically cope with germs? 1) Fever, an attempt to bake germs to death. 2) Immune system, white blood cells and other cells some immune effects are temporary or permanent (Vaccinations) the problem is that some germs evolve not to be recognized by immune systems through their antigens. 3) Natural selection, some people more resistant than others voluntary effect on people repeatedly exposed to a particular pathogen. 30. What are the main characteristics of infectious diseases that visit us as epidemics? What is the reason why these characteristics tend to make a disease run in epidemics? GGR329 PAST EXAM QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS • They spread quickly and efficiently, • acute illness (Individual either dies or recovers quickly), • People who recover are often immune for life… • Tend to be restricted to humans. 31. according to Diamond, why did agriculture launch the evolution of infectious diseases? 1) sustains much higher population densities, 2) Good breeding ground (Use of sewage in agriculture, Fish ponds, Farmers surrounded by disease transmitting rodents) 3) Development of trade routes (Good for carrying diseases in people, fur, etc) 4) Diseases among animals similarly require large and dense populations of animals. 33. What are the stages in the evolution of a specialized human disease from an animal precursor? 1) Diseases picked up directly from pets(domesticated animals) and skinning wild animals (typically not contagious between humans) 2) Animal pathogens (transmitted directly between people and causes epidemics 3) Farmer animals pathogens that did establish themselves in humans and have not died out and may or may not still become major killers of humanity. 4) Major long established epidemic diseases confined to humans (Evolutionary survives of far more pathogens that tried to make the hump to us from animals and mostly failed) 32. According to Rodolfo Acuña-Soto, what was "cocolitzli" (and what was it not)? According to Bruce Stutz, what is Acuña-Soto's explanation of what happened in Mexico during the epidemics of 1545 and 1576? • Coclitzli was a local hemorrhagic fever rather than old world disease • it laid dormant in most likely rodents, Drought increased the concentration of rodents which started spreading the infection • Rains ~ >>> rodents spread virus to humans, humans transmitted virus to other humans. • The Epidemics of 1545 and 1576 seemed to be another disease other than smallpox and was not related to it. The Aztecs called those outbreaks by a separate name Cocolitzli. • Acuña-Soto says. "Cocolitzli brought incomparable devastation that passed readily from one region to the next and killed quickly." Acuña-Soto has come to agree with the Aztecs: The cocolitzli plagues of the mid-16th century probably had nothing to do with smallpox. In fact, they probably had little to do with the Spanish invasion. 33. According to Heather Pringle, what did the Chinchorro mummies taught us about the vital statistics of these people? • Despite healthy conditions 25% children perished in less than 1 year • 33% infections eroded leg bones, • 20% women vertebrae so porous splintered from weight of own flesh GGR329 PAST EXAM QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS • Average life expectancy of 25 years. 34. What is Charles Kay's "keystone species" theory and what are its implication for the observed number of American bisons and other species in the second half of the nineteenth century? • Native Americans were the ultimate keystone predator who once structured entire ecosystems. • Native hunting controlled the distribution and number of bison on the northern Great Plains. • The only place Lewis and Clark saw bison, and especially large numbers, was in the center of aboriginal buffer zones between warring tribes. If it had not been for warring tribes and buffer zones, there would have been few bison anywhere in North America. • Thus, optimal-foraging theory would predict that when native people entered aboriginal buffer zones, they should have concentrated their hunting on the larger species, such as bison and elk 35. According to Robert Nelson, how did the rinderpest epidemics affect Southeast Africa's ecosystems a century ago? How does it still affect our current perception of these ecosystems? - Late 19 C Rinderpest plague (1889-early 1900’s) - Killed 90% to 95% of cattle (also affected sheep and goats) - Population dependent on cattle decimated (66% of Maasai in Tanzania might have died) - Many areas, rinderpest also virtually wiped out and negatively affected lives of: o Buffalo o Giraffe o Eland o Small antelopes o Warthogs Africa? GGR329 PAST EXAM QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS - Entire populations lost sustenance - Whole ecosystems transformed Main consequences: - >>> Tsetse flies by reversal of grasslands into dense fields and thickets. - Hordes of tsetse flies  X00 000 victims… (For Centuries, Africans transformed environment to control flies) Wildlife population - More immune to tsetse fly than domestic cattle th o Bounced back early 20 Century o A lot more abundant than before Led to - Images of “wild” Africa 36. According to Michael Coe, what are the traditional and currently controversial view of the past inhabitants of the Amazon and Orinoco basins? What is the main evidence put forward by the revisionists to support their argument? What do other authors similarly argue regarding the Pre-Columbian history of the Caribbean Islands? • The inhabitants of the Amazon and Orinoco basin did not always live in only small groups, because the very first Europeans to explore the Amazon saw extensive towns along the river systems, with very large populations. • Centuries later, the agriculturalists and hunters in the Amazon and Orinoco described by anthropologists are only the tattered survivors of the great demographic disaster that struck all of the hemisphere's indigenous peoples with the introduction of European epidemic diseases such as smallpox and measles. • Testifying to their vanished complexity are the extensive raised-field patterns that can be seen from the air in the now-denuded Beni region of eastern Bolivia and in the densely occupied towns of the Marajoara culture, which flourished for almost a millennium on a huge island in the mouth of the Amazon. • As Mann argues, we can now view the early Indians of the Americas not as prisoners of their environment but as managers of it. 37. What is terra preta? How much of the Amazonian basin is it thought by some researchers to cover? What are its main characteristics according to some researchers? GGR329 PAST EXAM QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS • Terra Preta: 10% Amazonia, size of France • Black earth-like anthropogenic soil with enhanced fertility due to - High levels of soil organic matter (SOM) - Nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and calcium Embedded in a landscape of infertile soils 38. What use did Charles Kay make of the Lewis and Clark journals? What was his main conclusion regarding the areas in which wildlife thrived at the time of the expedition? • Kay used the journals to identify what was lost and what did the two explorers find. Kay constructed a timeline of their journal using their wildlife observations to see what they found and reported as they moved west to the Pacific from the Mississippi River and St. Louis and then returned. • As Lewis and Clark approached areas inhabited by Native Americans, the wildlife numbers would drop off. As they left the inhabited areas, wildlife numbers would increase. • Kay said the greatest wildlife numbers appeared to be in buffer zones between warring tribes. If it had not been for buffer zones, Lewis and Clark would have found little wildlife anywhere in the West. • Kay's research demonstrates that humans were the apex predator in the pre- Columbian Americas. 39. According to Clark Erickson, what is the "myth of the pristine environment"? How does it relate to biodiversity? According to William Cronon, what is the "myth of wilderness"? In his opinion, how natural is wilderness (and what does he mean by his answer)? • “The myth of wilderness”, is that we can somehow leave nature untouched by our passage. In his opinion “Wilderness hides its unnaturalness behind a mask that is all the more beguiling because it seems so natural,” he says. By glorifying pristine landscapes, which exist only in the imagination of romantics, Western conservationists divert attention from the places where people live and the choices they make every day that do true damage to the natural world of which they are part. 42. What are the three (3) basic strategies underlying writing systems? What were the two (2) main ways by which writing was diffused? The 3 basic strategies underlying writing systems 1) Alphabet single basic sound, Unique sign, 2) Logograms(one written sign stands for a whole word) 3) Syllabaries(use a sign GGR329 PAST EXAM QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS for each syllabil. The 2 main ways by which writing was diffused 1) blueprint copying (copy/modify available detailed print) 2) Idea diffusion (Basic Idea; reinvent details) 40. According to Diamond, what are the four (4) main factors influencing the acceptance of new technologies? What does he mean when he says that the history of technology was an autocatalytic process? What were the two (2) main ways by which writing was diffused? 1) Advantage over alternatives 2) Social value and prestige 3) Compatibility with vested interests 4) Ease of seeing advantages. • Technology's history exemplifies what is termed an autocatalytic process: that is, one that speeds up at a rate that increases with time, because the process catalyzes itself advances depend upon previous mastery of simpler problems, New technologies and materials make it possible to generate still other new technologies by recombination. TECHNOLOGY BEGETS more technology; the importance of an invention's diffusion potentially exceeds the importance of the original invention. • The 2 main ways by which writing was diffused 1) blueprint copying (copy/modify available detailed print) 2) Idea diffusion (Basic Idea; reinvent details) 41. According to Diamond, what are the factors involving economics or the organization of society that explain differences in receptivity to new ideas and technologies among societies? Explain each briefly. 1) Cheap slave labor (No need for technology if you have slave labor what would the slaves do) 2) Patents and property laws 3) Opportunities and technical training 4) Financial rewards to invention 5) Individualism financial rewards not divided among all relatives. 42. According to Diamond, how does life expectancy affect the differences in receptivity to new ideas and technologies among societies? What ideological reasons also play a role in this respect? Life expectancy – Life experience and time to embark on adventures. Ideological reasons: Risk taking behavior, scientific outlook, tolerance of diverse views, religion. 43. According to your professor, what are the main processes through which "collective creativity" actually occurs? 1) Multidisciplinary teams within a firm 2) Employees adding to, or switching, product line 3) Individuals moving between different lines of work GGR329 PAST EXAM QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS 4) Individuals observing a product/process in another setting and incorporating it into their main activity 5) Individuals possessing different skill and working for different firm collaborating with each other 46. According to Diamond, what are the four (4) factors that sometimes stimulate technological advances, and sometimes inhibit them? 1) Axis 2) Time and onset of food production 3) Barriers to diffusion 4) human population size. 44. How does Diamond distinguish bands, tribes, chiefdoms and states in terms of membership? Band Number of people: dozens Settlement pattern: nomadic Basis of relationships: kin Ethnicities and languages: 1 Tribe Number of people: hundreds Settlement pattern: fixed: 1 village Basis of relationship: kin-b
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