From pre history to history
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From Pre History to History. Overview for Chapter 1. The Big Picture: How Old is Time?. Most of Human existence occurred before the beginning of written records: (i.e. pre-historic) Much of what we know from science has been controversial within and beyond the realm of science

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From Pre History to History

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From pre history to history

From Pre History to History

Overview for Chapter 1


The big picture how old is time

The Big Picture: How Old is Time?

  • Most of Human existence occurred before the beginning of written records: (i.e. pre-historic)

  • Much of what we know from science has been controversial within and beyond the realm of science

    • If a timeline of 1 foot equals 20 years…

      • 101 Feet takes you to the beginning of the Common Era (CE) or AD

      • 235 Feet takes you to the pyramids

      • 300 Feet takes you to the first written records

      • 525 Feet takes you to the first farmers

      • 6000 feet (1.13 miles) takes you to the first homo sapien-sapiens


And it goes further

And It Goes Further

  • If 1 foot = 20 years…

    • Nearly 6 miles takes you to the wide spread use of fire by our human ancestors

    • Over 26 miles takes us to our first human ancestors

    • 43,561 miles to the beginning of earth according to geologists

  • And where are we?

    • You are 9 inches

    • I am 3 feet

    • Automobiles have been around 5.7 feet

    • Our country is 11.85 feet


Some things to think about

Some things to think about…

  • Chapter 1 looks at an enormous chronological and geographic band of history

    • Prehistoric Era (before humans left written records of their activities

    • Historic Era (where written records have provided for more complex societies and more evidence of the past)

  • The division between prehistory and history occurred at different times at different places

    • The events that would generate the major developments in this era resulted from the intersection of geographic opportunity and human interaction and developing technology


The stone age

The “Stone” Age

  • The period before the historic era has often been called The Stone Age

    • Once believed that the major defining development defining these ages was the production of stone tools

    • Historians and anthropologists (people who study human culture) agree that food production is a more important defining element than production of stone tools

  • Paleolithic “Old Stone Age” Most of human existence

    • Over 99.5 % of human hunting and gathering-

  • Neolithic “New Stone Age” Advent of domestication and farming- Large scale permanent human settlements

  • Change was a human response to environmental pressures


And civilization

And Civilization…

  • Human interaction and settlement led to more complex communities and agricultural surpluses

  • Trade led to increased economic interdependence and wealth (and economic inequality)

  • Complex governments and writing evolve to manage and protect wealth of growing economies

  • Civilizations tended to develop in river valleys where cooperative agriculture (irrigation)generated more interdependence

    • Mesopotamian Valley (Iraq)

    • Nile Valley (Egypt)

    • Indus River Valley (Pakistan and India)

    • Yellow River (China)


Key points to consider as you read

Key Points to Consider As You Read…

How did the vastness of the Paleolithic Age accommodate evolutionary and geographic shifts in humans and their ancestors?

How did geography and climate impact early humans and inspire changes we call the Neolithic Revolution?

How does agriculture and civilization represent important human transitions?

What were some of the defining characteristics of early civilizations?


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