Strayer Chapter 7

“The histories of Africa and the Americas during the classical era largely resemble those of Eurasia.” Do you agree with this statement? Explain why or why not.
-Evidence for yes/no
-Support-The emergence of powerful states such as Axum and Teotihucan which sought to create empires
-Support- The parallels between the Mayan civ and classical greek
-Support- spread of the chavin cult similar to the emergence of the widespread religious traditions in eurasia
-Challenge- Ancestral pueblo and mound building societies of North america and regional civs such as moche (south america) more closely resemble neolithic villages and the first civs of eurasia than the classical civs

“The particular cultures and societies of Africa and of the Americas discussed in this chapter developed largely in isolation from one another.” What evidence would support this statement, and what might challenge it?
-Support- complete physical separation and lack of contact between the african and american cultures and societies
-Support- The geographic and cultural separation between meroe and axum and the niger valley civ
-Support- significant physical distances that separated andean, North American, and Mesoamerican civs along with the lack of sustained contact btw the 3
-Challenge-Extensive interaction between the mayan and teotihuacan civs, Conquest of meroe by axum, encounters btw bantu and gathering-hunting groups (Batwa) as they migrated south
-Challenge- Chavin religious cult provided a measure of economic/cultural intergration to the peruvian andes
-Challenge- Critical arrival of maize from mesoamerica into the ancestral pueblo and moundbuilding societies

What generated change in the histories of Africa and the Americas during the classical era?
-Africa-Migration of bantu into africa south of the equator, emergence of niger valley urban centers, rise and fall of axum and meroe
-Africa-contact with the trade network of eurasia. Through contact along these networks, Christianity arrived in NE Africa (Axum.) Axum derived its written script from south arabia. Bantu adopted new crops (sugarcane, coconuts, BANANAS) that indonesian sailor/immigrant brought to east africa
-Americas-emergence of Maya and teotihucan civ pushed mesoamerican civ towards new levels of complexity
-Chavin religious cult provided a measure of economic and cultural integration to the peruvian andes
-Spread of maize into nort america made it possible for the ancestral pueblo society to take shape and allowed cahoke to achieve a higher degree of sophistication than the mound-building societies preceding it

How did the history of Meroë and Axum reflect interaction with neighboring civilizations?
-Both traded extensively w/ neighboring civs. Meroe’s wealth/military power wer derived from this trade. Formation of substantial state in Axum was stimulated by it participation in the red sea/indian ocean commerce and the taxes the flowed from it
-Both developed their own distinct writing script. A Meroitic script eventually took the place of egyptian style writing. Axum’s script, geez, was derived from south arbian models.
-Axum adopted christianity from the roman world primarily through egyptian influence. The region once controlled by meroe adopted chirstianity after meroe’s decline

How does the experience of the Niger Valley challenge conventional notions of “civilization”?
-Region witnessed creation of large cities with the apparent absence of a corresponding state structure. These cities were not like the city-states of ancient mesopotamia, nor were they encompassed withint some larger imperial system
-They resembled most closly the early cities of the indus valley civ where complex urban centers also apparently operated w/o coercive authority of a centralized state

In what ways did the arrival of Bantu-speaking peoples stimulate cross-cultural interaction?
1.Brough agriculture to regions of africa south of the equator, enabling larger # of people to live in a smaller area than before
2.Brought parasitic/infectior diseases to which the gathering hunting people had little immunity
3.Brough iron
4.Many bantu langs of south africa retain to this day distinctive “clicks” in their local dialects that they adopted from the now gone gathering hunting people that preceded them
5. Bantu participated in networks of exchange w/ forest dwelling Batwa people. The Batwas adopted Bantu lang, while maintaining nonagricultural lifestyle and separate identity. Bantu farmers regared Batwas a 1st comers to region and therefore closest to the ancestral/territorial spirits that determined fertility of land/people. Forest dwelling bantu people grew in # created chiefdoms, chiefs made Batwa title of “owners of the land”, claimed batwa ancestry, portrayed batwa as original civilizers
6. Bantu framers in E Africa incresingly adopted grains, domesticated sheep, cattle from already established people of region
7. Aquired food crops from southeast asia (coconuts, sugarcane, bananas) brough to east africa by idonesian sailors/immigrants

With what Eurasian civilizations might the Maya be compared?
-Because of its fragmented political structure, classical mayan civ more closely resembled the competing city states of mesopotamia or classical greece than the imperial structures of rome, persia, or china

In what ways did Teotihuacán shape the history of Mesoamerica?
-Military conquests brought many regions into its political orbit and made it a presence in the mayan civ
-Center of a large trade network
-Architectural/artistic styles of the city were imitated across mesoamerica

What kind of influence did Chavín exert in the Andes region?
-Chavin style archietecture, sculpture, pottery, religious images, painted textiles were widely imatated in the region
-Chavin became a pilgrimage site, perhaps a training center for initiates from distant corners of the region
-Location 3+ weeks away by llama caravan, temples were remodeled to resemble chavin, some with local variations
-Chavin religious cult provided a measure of economic and cultural intergration to peruvian andes

What supports scholar’s contention that Moche represented a regional civilization in the Andes?
Considerable archaeological evidence is available to provide insight into the Moche civilization. Among this evidence are pyramidal temples, sacrificed human remains, and burial sites of social elites. In addition, high quality pottery, jewelry, and and sewing supplies is available to understand the civilization.

However, the Moche were are regional civilization because all of the evidence is limited to a 250 mile stretch of the Peruvian northern coast. Also, in the 6th century C.E., some sort of ecological disruption occurred, but because of Moche’s limited scope, they were unable to cope with the environmental consequences.

What features of Moche life characterize it as a civilization?
-dominate a 250 mile stretch ft peru’s nothern coast, incorporated 13 river valleys, flourished for 700 years
-Economy was rooted in a complex irritgation system, required constant maintenance
-Politcally governed by warrior-priests who sometimes lived atop huge pyramids (largest of which was constructed of 143 mill sun dried blocks)
-Wealth of warrior-priest elite and remarkable artistic skillz of moche craftspeople reflected in the elablorate burials for rulers. Moche craftspeople renowned for their metalworking, pottery, weaving, painting

In what ways were the histories of the Ancestral Pueblo and the Mound Builders similar to each other, and how did they differ?
-Both were similar in a # of ways
-both’s settlements were linked into trading networks, also participated in long distance exchange
-both created stuctures to track the heavens
-Both ultimately adopted maize from mesoamerica
-They also differed in a # of ways
-Mound builders participated in an independent agricultural rev and continued to supplement their diets by g+h until maize arrived from mesoamerica. Ancestral pueblo acquired maize from mesoamerica much earlier/settled into a more fulltime agricultural culture earlier in their development
-Mound builders created larger monuemental architecture both in their burial mounds and in their geometric earthworks, although ancestral pueblo people did create kivas as ceremonial centers and network of roads that may have had religious significance
-largest mound building settlements (cahokia) were far larger urban centers
-Ancestral pueblo society starte later and did no last as long

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