Geography Is Unfair

359 Words2 Pages
Geography is unfair I agree with Ian Morris' idea that geography is the ultimate decisive power of human history. At the beginning of human history, the earliest man, homo sapiens, evolved in Africa between 200,000, then spread across the world in the last 60,000 years. This dispersal made humanity’s genes different, but some deeper parts of body did not change a lot (such as head shape or lactose tolerance). The western culture and eastern culture were not that big of a difference before the sixth century BC. Many western and eastern sages wrestled with much the same questions about life and society. Greco-Roman, Jewish, Indian and Chinese classics are very similarly at that time or on the same level. However, now, the west and east are very different in all sides. Geography explains why these ancient empires could become so powerful and completely different now. These countries locate roughly 20-35° north, where is very good for farming. Farming could support more people, it's better than hunting and gathering. For more than 1,000 years, from at least 600 to 1700 ad, the most powerful country is China, not the West. However, 400 years ago, the geography had forced Britain to make ships that could reliably cross oceans. Because Britain is not in a favourable location, but a island. So Britain need more ships, guns that could shoot the people on the other side. Such a huge disadvantage 4,000 years ago, became a huge plus from the 17th century. Guns, compasses, ocean-going ships which were originally pioneered in the East but which, thanks to geography, proved more useful in the West. Since then, science and technology constitute the primary productive force. Westerners then created an Atlantic economy which raised profound new questions about how the world worked, pushing westerners into a Scientific Revolution, an Enlightenment and the Industrial Revolution.
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