“History of Human Societies”

Elaborate on at least three defining features of early human societies and groups from about 50,000 to 13,000 years ago. What were the primary defining characteristics of social life in these groups regarding cooperation, competition, family, social relations, knowledge, and making a living? Name and explain the cultural and social elements that appeared for the first time in human history during the “Great Leap Forward”, as Diamond terms it, and how these fundamentally transformed human society and group living.

Your writing should begin with an overview of your opinion and summary of data supporting it and rely on evidence from this week’s readings and any other pertinent course materials from this week, stated in a clear and organized manner. The writing should be approximately the equivalent of one page double-spaced with citations of our relevant sources to provide evidence for your argument.

Read Diamond, Jared. 1992. The Great Leap Forward. In The Third Chimpanzee: The Evolution and Future of the Human Animal. New York: Harper. (link here) (link here) – Alternative Formats

– Read Fagan, Brian. 2004. The Late Ice Age Orchestra: 18,000 to 13,500 B.C. In The Long Summer: How Climate Changed Civilization. New York: Basic Books. (link here) (link here) – Alternative Formats

– Watch Dr. Chapman’s “Lecture – History of Human Societies.” (link here)


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