AP World History
Foundations of World History,
How did humans progress from bands of hunter-gathers to the great civilization of the ancient world?
For nearly 2.5 million years ago humans lived as hunter-gatherers. Early modern humans, who had populated much of the globe by 30,000 years ago, continued the hunting and gathering way of life. In hunting-and-gatherings economy the people were largely self-sufficient. They secured their own food supply and moved from place to place as needed to maintain it. They clothed themselves in the furs of animals they had killed for food. Most of the materials ancient hunter gathers used had disintegrated with passage of time. The earliest hunter-gathers tool kit included stone flakes-sharpen pieces of stone that could be used like knives to butcher animals. Knowledge of how to make tools was culturally transmitted from generation to generation. It became of part of the hunter-gatherer band’s culture. Hunter gatherers relied for survival on the natural plant and animal resources found in their surroundings. Early modern humans gathered wild fruits, nuts, roots, and seeds. Early modern humans had to be mobile to maintain a successful hunting and gathering economy. Hunter gathers moved from one place to another in an ongoing quest for food. Most of their movements were related to the seasonal migrations of the game animals that they hunted. Hunter gatherers could not afford to gather possessions. Mobility was a key to the hunting and gathering way of life. Later hunter gatherers maintained sits within their territory which they could return to. Hunter-gatherer bands consisted mainly of kin groups- people who claimed a common ancestor. Bands typically ranged in size from 30 to 50 people. They shared food and otherwise worked together for common ends. Their economy was based on a division of labor. Members of the hunter gatherer bands generally enjoyed equal...