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Offlineakira_akuma
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Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?)
    #21636321 - 05/04/15 09:00 PM (5 years, 9 months ago)

http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/guns-germs-and-steel/

who's seen this documentary, or read the book?

it seems like it poses a very interesting question to me, and i think this could highlight some interesting subject matter in discussion.

have at it.


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InvisiblePsychonautica
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Re: Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?) [Re: akira_akuma] * 1
    #21636343 - 05/04/15 09:04 PM (5 years, 9 months ago)

I have not, I love me some documentaries though, I'm going to look into it.

Johnny Knoxville made a ridiculous documentary, I watched last night, called The Wild and Wonderful Whites of West Virginia.

It's about these crazy ass west Virginia rednecks doing silly redneck things, and shooting each other, and cheating on their wives with their cousins and shit (I'm not being derogatory to southerners, these people literally have sex with their cousins)

Not a very informative documentary but its entertaining as fuck

Is this thread to discuss all documentaries or just the one you posted? Your post makes me think just the one you posted, but the thread title makes me think all documentaries.

Either way, I'll watch this documentary sometime today, I'll come back when I have.


--------------------
The chances of you even being born, Were forty million to one. There's two parts of the statistic And I want you to live through one
3/8/95 - 7/10/15 Rest In Paradise, Brother.
Sheekle said:
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InvisibleTopPmz
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Re: Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?) [Re: akira_akuma] * 1
    #21636357 - 05/04/15 09:08 PM (5 years, 9 months ago)

I'll give it a watch when I get off work in the morning. Posting so I'll remember.


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OfflineJohnny Quest
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Re: Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?) [Re: TopPmz] * 1
    #21636430 - 05/04/15 09:20 PM (5 years, 9 months ago)

I took a class called "Plants and Human Society" where this book was a topic of study.

I've read the book and participated in class-discussions on it.  Its very interesting indeed. :pipesmoke:

As a bonus: The professor of the class gave lectures on Magic mushrooms (among other psychedelics).  He seemed like a tripper himself although he never openly admitted it.


--------------------
Studying mycology since: August, 2008

A typical monotub grow of a multi-spore rye spawn with some Golden Teachers: inoculated on day one and saw first signs of growth on day 5. On day 17 jars were 15% - 30% colonized so shook em up. On day 25 I mixed the spawn and sub in the monotub and on day 50 harvested the first flush. Just under 4 ounces dry in 1 month 19 days!

One Love!


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Offlineakira_akuma
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Re: Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?) [Re: Johnny Quest]
    #21636630 - 05/04/15 09:59 PM (5 years, 9 months ago)

that's sweet dude. it's a pretty dang interesting premise.

personally, i didn't really post this thread with this intent but i realize however that i can hopefully spark a dialogue here that might help dispel the "Bell Curve" effect around here. :strokebeard:

this "raw materials due to geography during history" premise seems much more consistent a historical and anthropological query of the human condition around the world, then a statistical analysis study based on current present day data.

at least it actually addresses and important question.


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OfflineJWils
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Re: Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?) [Re: akira_akuma] * 1
    #21636753 - 05/04/15 10:25 PM (5 years, 9 months ago)

I read the book.

Given the ridiculously vast topic he's covering, Diamond does a decent job, but really a proper analysis of these things could fill a whole bookshelf. I also seem to remember people complaining that the notion of geographic determinism as applied to civilizations was rather outdated.


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OfflineBambi
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Re: Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?) [Re: JWils] * 1
    #21637185 - 05/04/15 11:55 PM (5 years, 9 months ago)

I just recently finished the book -- definitely an interesting read, but I have to say that the author repeated himself quite a bit. Still a good and very interesting read.

Posting as a reminder to watch the documentary, :thumbup:


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OfflineDraenei
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Re: Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?) [Re: Bambi] * 1
    #21637201 - 05/04/15 11:58 PM (5 years, 9 months ago)

I saw the documentary in my Sociology class. It pretty much explains the concept of "fate"


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Offlineakira_akuma
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Re: Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?) [Re: JWils]
    #21637260 - 05/05/15 12:06 AM (5 years, 9 months ago)

well, my interest's lay in anthropology and archaeology, and having those fields examined through a historical lens is certainly fascinating; but more to the point of why i think it's a good discussion is because it puts to bed the "Bell Curve"'s notion's of anthropological chicanery.

of course, maybe geographic determinism may not have been the only cause for the overriding facts of civilizations' dominance over certain places in history, from one to another, but it certainly can't be discounted as one, at least; and it's perhaps an important piece to the overall picture.


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InvisiblezZZz
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Re: Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?) [Re: akira_akuma]
    #21637393 - 05/05/15 12:31 AM (5 years, 9 months ago)

there's a cool documentary on that site i watched a while back called amongst white clouds. would watch again. :thumbup:

http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/amongst-white-clouds/


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OfflineCj-B
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Re: Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?) [Re: JWils]
    #21637474 - 05/05/15 12:58 AM (5 years, 9 months ago)

Quote:

JWils said:
I read the book.

Given the ridiculously vast topic he's covering, Diamond does a decent job, but really a proper analysis of these things could fill a whole bookshelf. I also seem to remember people complaining that the notion of geographic determinism as applied to civilizations was rather outdated.






This. It's pretty widely denigrated by historians for being entirely oversimplified. His ideas hinge on the claim that geographic determine sociopolitical development of a nation while totally ignoring a lot of the individual/social/political/historical events that shaped the society. He simplified it to a straight, even line of 'progress' that claims that a civilization farther down the chain (IE: Eurasia domesticating animals and puzzling out agriculture before American civilizations) makes them inherently superior/more powerful...plus it focuses far more on the effects of guns/steel than it does germs, despite biological/ecological factors being by far the more important factor in the conquest of the American continent by the European empires and avoids a lot of the really important questions about WHY only a small group of humans would go so far from their home to conquer/colonize (and further more, why with such brutality. It's been awhile since I've read the book personally but I remember him making it seem like a natural extension of a more 'advanced' culture meeting a more primitive one). It also kind of ignores the idea of societies actually suppressing the advance of technology for cultural/religious/ethical/financial reasons. It's a decent introductory book to the material but I can't recommend it as 'good history'


--------------------
"I have no way of knowing whether you, who eventually will read this record, like stories or not. If you do not, no doubt you have turned these pages without attention. I confess that I love them. Indeed, it often seems to me that of all the good things in the world, the only ones humanity can claim for itself are stories and music; the rest, mercy, beauty, sleep, clean water and hot food (as the Ascian would have said) are all the work of the Increate. Thus, stories are small things indeed in the scheme of the universe, but it is hard not to love best what is our own—hard for me, at least."


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Offlineakira_akuma
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Re: Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?) [Re: Cj-B]
    #21637556 - 05/05/15 01:27 AM (5 years, 9 months ago)

it's not a history book though. and political/historical events are shaped by economic factors, such as ruling class, and scarcity, which he touches on; and of course i'm sure he purposely avoids the topical "Ethics" problem's in the overall picture of financial/cultural/sociopolitical reasons for such factors because A: he's not looking for debate; or B: delving into human psychology, which of course is driven by economic and environmental factors (the main degree of insight in the whole idea, i think). he is giving an archaeological rationale for the course of history's division of "wealth and progress"; and by the bye, it's funny you mention germs don't get talked about, because in the documentary (which he hosts) it's the main aspect of the second half of the three hour series; so maybe he just decided to delve into that only now? i don't know i haven't read the book.

:shrug: but he talks alot about how the point of his work is to point out how we can effect change in the world knowing that people can be at a disadvantage simply by their geography, and that that can be out of their control entirely; that and the fact of the world's wealth and progress are also, in part, shaped by geography too. and that the economy is, aside from the more complex subject of it being manipulated for the suitor's of "big business", a thing that is largely out of control, from a historical context.

it's not just a history book to tell you "what something happened" to change what, but it's obviously more about an anthropological view on "how and why the something had to happen anyway" regardless of individual input. it's an explaining of those facets, and not an explanation of individual historical concurrences.


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OfflineCj-B
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Re: Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?) [Re: akira_akuma]
    #21637643 - 05/05/15 01:53 AM (5 years, 9 months ago)

I haven't seen the documentary series myself...but


Quote:

akira_akuma said:
it's not a history book though. and political/historical events are shaped by economic factors, such as ruling class, and scarcity, which he touches on; and of course i'm sure he purposely avoids the topical "Ethics" problem's in the overall picture of financial/cultural/sociopolitical reasons for such factors because A: he's not looking for debate; or B: delving into human psychology, which of course is driven by economic and environmental factors (the main degree of insight in the whole idea, i think). he is giving an archaeological rationale for the course of history's division of "wealth and progress"; and by the bye, it's funny you mention germs don't get talked about, because in the documentary (which he hosts) it's the main aspect of the second half of the three hour series; so maybe he just decided to delve into that only now? i don't know i haven't read the book.

:shrug: but he talks alot about how the point of his work is to point out how we can effect change in the world knowing that people can be at a disadvantage simply by their geography, and that that can be out of their control entirely; that and the fact of the world's wealth and progress are also, in part, shaped by geography too. and that the economy is, aside from the more complex subject of it being manipulated for the suitor's of "big business", a thing that is largely out of control, from a historical context.

it's not just a history book to tell you "what something happened" to change what, but it's obviously more about an anthropological view on "how and why the something had to happen anyway" regardless of individual input. it's an explaining of those facets, and not an explanation of individual historical concurrences.





How does one study the anthropological view of things by totally ignoring the human effect on history? The brutal conquering of the Americas for the sake of colonization and conversion certainly can't be explained by geographic factors seeing as it's a worldview enforced by their national history and the personalities of key actors like Pizzaro or Cortez. The way I recall it being described reduced it to a rigged game from the beginning based on the size/shape of the axises (axes?) of the different continents where civilizations in the temperate latitudes of Eurasia were 'superior' from the very beginning. Granted the way he expresses it is a great deal more complex than that but his core assertion is that the geographic axises (axes?) are/were the key factor determining societal success.

http://www.amazon.com/Ecological-Imperialism-Biological-Expansion-Environment/dp/0521546184 This book explores a lot of the same material in more depth imo, while also noting the limits to just how far geographic factors alone could shape a society.


--------------------
"I have no way of knowing whether you, who eventually will read this record, like stories or not. If you do not, no doubt you have turned these pages without attention. I confess that I love them. Indeed, it often seems to me that of all the good things in the world, the only ones humanity can claim for itself are stories and music; the rest, mercy, beauty, sleep, clean water and hot food (as the Ascian would have said) are all the work of the Increate. Thus, stories are small things indeed in the scheme of the universe, but it is hard not to love best what is our own—hard for me, at least."


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Offlineakira_akuma
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Re: Guns, Germs, and Steel (Anyone up for a documentary discussion?) [Re: Cj-B]
    #21637696 - 05/05/15 02:17 AM (5 years, 9 months ago)

well, he talks about biological factors in moving people away from climate's their bodies could handle, and he talks about how differences in technology, all has played a part in the expansion of Europe. :shrug:

and i'm pretty sure he, as i said, was simply explaining those facets aforementioned, and not explaining individual historical events.

i'm sure that the book you linked is interesting, certainly, but to overstate that biological factors (from what i can see here in the link) played a larger role than geographical resources, isn't that basically your argument here, though in reverse of mine?

and isn't it true that resources would have made certain people more dependent on trade than other's, leading to a better economy for certain civilization's before conquest was ever achieved? sure displacement was huge factor in that, and both European's and South American's and African's all had their disadvantages to certain biological factors; which made for some obvious interactions; but was that implication really as critical as a "headstart in resources", as it were?

because which came first? obviously the geography of the civilization. not the conquest.

so it looks like the same truncated message is employed for for obvious disdain for the geographical insight, while having that same insightful predilection applied to biology? is one more interesting than the other?

i'm sure both books are well written. i've bookmarked them both.

PS: the avarice of nation's leadership can be traced back well into early civilization but this Gun's, Germ's, and Steel guy isn't talking about moral implication's, only science. science can't explain why someone is inherently greedy; only that they are more likely to be due to their upbringing.


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