Guns Germs and Steel

Topics: Africa, Neolithic, Agriculture Pages: 5 (1798 words) Published: August 12, 2013
“Why you white man have so much cargo and us New Guineans have so little?” This is the question Yali asked Jared Diamond a University of California Los Angeles professor. This sparked Jared Diamond to answer this question by turning back the clocks of time to an era where everyone lived the same. This is the beginnings of Diamond’s ground breaking and heartwarming three- part documentary called “Guns, Germs, and Steel.” This documentary goes deep into history and answers the main question of, “How did our worlds become so different?” Jared Diamond takes on the challenge most philosophers wouldn’t dare try of dividing the haves and have-nots of the world. His journey began in the forests of Papua New Guinea. As of 30 years ago, they were still using some of the techniques used in the Stone Age. People hunted by tracking their prey and used bow and arrows. Their main source of food was the Sago tree; this only provided about 70 pounds of food and did not provide the nutrients needed to survive. Women did most of the gathering and processed the pulp taken out of the Sago tree. This belief all start when he began to look back on the time when the world was once equal. This was back thirteen thousand years ago after the first ice age when people where still basing their living off of hunting and gathering. This time period began known as the Stone Age. There were very little resources during this time, and the hunting and gathering just wasn’t enough. The villages had to remain small in order for the people already there would be able to survive, and they spent most of their time constantly looking for food. When they weren’t able to find food they would resort to eating large spiders and other insects, which wasn’t much of a difference because even when they did find food it was the insides of the tree for its pulp which was hardly enough to keep them energized. This discovery for Diamond was simple; when the world was equal the whole world was living in poverty.

As Diamond continued on with his research he advanced a little into time he noticed a change in the geography of the Fertile Crescent. He saw that crops began to spread alongside the Fertile Crescent making more resources available for the people of the Middle East. There was said to be findings of major domestication able plants such as wheat and barley. This discovery was major in Diamonds work because with these findings he noticed that the villages’ population began to increase because they began to domesticate-farm- these crops allowing them to feed more people. The farming of plants for feed did begin to arise in many places such as The Americas and Africa, but Eurasia had a better advantage then the others due to its location to the Fertile Crescent compare to the others countries. This was the first time Diamond began to see inequality and advancement in the world.

Diamond began to look further into the two empires as a whole. He started with the conquistadors. Francisco Pizarro was the leader of the conquistadors and is well known for the man who conquered the Inca, one of the most advanced empires of the world, but as he dug in he noticed the Inca’s lacked one of the best resources the Spaniards had. Diamond felt that this could be the key to the miraculous victory of the conquistadors.

Diamond discovers that the Spaniards had one of the most useful domesticate able mammals in the world which is a horse. Diamond had discovered that the horse was a huge help to the Spaniards success in farming. The horses provided so much to Eurasia such as food, fertilizer for the land, and transportation for themselves, and loads, making Eurasia exceedingly more productive. Now in comparison to the Spaniards’ horses the Inca Empire had llamas for meat, wool, and fertilizer for their land, but unfortunately for Inca empires llamas aren’t capable of carrying large loads or people putting the Incas at a major disadvantage.

Even though Diamond found one...
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