Against the Grain

A Deep History of the Earliest States

Author: James C. Scott

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 0300182910

Category: History

Page: 336

View: 1053

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An account of all the new and surprising evidence now available for the beginnings of the earliest civilizations that contradict the standard narrative Why did humans abandon hunting and gathering for sedentary communities dependent on livestock and cereal grains, and governed by precursors of today's states? Most people believe that plant and animal domestication allowed humans, finally, to settle down and form agricultural villages, towns, and states, which made possible civilization, law, public order, and a presumably secure way of living. But archaeological and historical evidence challenges this narrative. The first agrarian states, says James C. Scott, were born of accumulations of domestications: first fire, then plants, livestock, subjects of the state, captives, and finally women in the patriarchal family--all of which can be viewed as a way of gaining control over reproduction. Scott explores why we avoided sedentism and plow agriculture, the advantages of mobile subsistence, the unforeseeable disease epidemics arising from crowding plants, animals, and grain, and why all early states are based on millets and cereal grains and unfree labor. He also discusses the "barbarians" who long evaded state control, as a way of understanding continuing tension between states and nonsubject peoples.
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Against the Grain

A Deep History of the Earliest States

Author: James C. Scott

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 0300231687

Category: History

Page: 336

View: 8376

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An account of all the new and surprising evidence now available for the beginnings of the earliest civilizations that contradict the standard narrative Why did humans abandon hunting and gathering for sedentary communities dependent on livestock and cereal grains, and governed by precursors of today’s states? Most people believe that plant and animal domestication allowed humans, finally, to settle down and form agricultural villages, towns, and states, which made possible civilization, law, public order, and a presumably secure way of living. But archaeological and historical evidence challenges this narrative. The first agrarian states, says James C. Scott, were born of accumulations of domestications: first fire, then plants, livestock, subjects of the state, captives, and finally women in the patriarchal family—all of which can be viewed as a way of gaining control over reproduction. Scott explores why we avoided sedentism and plow agriculture, the advantages of mobile subsistence, the unforeseeable disease epidemics arising from crowding plants, animals, and grain, and why all early states are based on millets and cereal grains and unfree labor. He also discusses the “barbarians” who long evaded state control, as a way of understanding continuing tension between states and nonsubject peoples.
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Unredeemed Land

An Environmental History of Civil War and Emancipation in the Cotton South

Author: Erin Stewart Mauldin

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0190865180

Category: History

Page: 272

View: 1240

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How did the Civil War and the emancipation of four million slaves reconfigure the natural landscape in the South and the farming economy dependent upon it? An innovative reconsideration of the Civil War's profound impact on southern history, Unredeemed Land traces the environmental constraints that shaped the rural South's transition to capitalism during the late nineteenth century. Dixie's "King Cotton" required extensive land use techniques across large swaths of acreage, fresh soil, and slave-based agriculture in order to remain profitable. But wartime destruction and the rise of the contract labor system closed off those possibilities and necessitated increasingly intensive methods of cultivation that worked against the environment. The resulting disconnect between farmers' use of the land and what the natural environment could support intensified the economic dislocation of freed people, poor farmers, and sharecroppers. Erin Stewart Mauldin demonstrates how the Civil War and emancipation accelerated ongoing ecological change in ways that hastened the postbellum collapse of the region's subsistence economy, encouraged the expansion of cotton production, and ultimately kept cotton farmers trapped in a cycle of debt and tenancy. The first environmental history to bridge the antebellum, Civil War, and Reconstruction periods, Unredeemed Land powerfully examines the ways military conflict and emancipation left enduring ecological legacies.
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A Dictionary of Science, Literature, & Art

Comprising the History, Description, and Scientific Principles of Every Branch of Human Knowledge; with the Derivation and Definition of All the Terms in General Use

Author: William Thomas Brande

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: Art

Page: 1423

View: 7843

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A Dictionary of the English Language

In which the Words are Deduced from Their Originals; and Illustrated in Their Different Significations, by Examples from the Best Writers: Together with a History of the Language, and an English Grammar

Author: Samuel Johnson

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: English language

Page: N.A

View: 4534

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Risk Management, Speculation, and Derivative Securities

Author: Geoffrey Poitras

Publisher: Academic Press

ISBN: 9780125588225

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 601

View: 842

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Presenting an integrated explanation of speculative trading and risk management from the practitioner's point of view, "Risk Management, Speculation, and Derivative Securities" is a standard text on financial risk management that departs from the perspective of an agent whose main concerns are pricing and hedging derivatives.
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An American Biographical and Historical Dictionary

Containing an Account of the Lives, Characters, and Writings of the Most Eminent Persons in North America from Its First Settlement, and a Summary of the History of the Several Colonies and of the United States

Author: William Allen

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: Biography

Page: 800

View: 5681

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