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Old 12-14-2012, 07:38 AM
 
Location: Missouri, USA
3,923 posts, read 2,725,939 times
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Larger groups allow for greater specialization, which can lead to a better military.
With a better military, it might become more likely to use them for something, rather than fleeing from people you disagree with, or who desire your land.

Also, with smaller groups, the people close to you, and to the group's leader, will be closer to you and to that leader. Therefore, their lives will probably be worth more to you and to that leader, and the risks associated with initiating violence could decrease its likelyhood.

Also, with fewer members, the more valuable each member's skills are...particularly if they have some unique skill, such as that of a spearmaker or flintknapper, making it more of a blow to the group to lose them, further decreasing the likelyhood of desiring conflict.

Chimpanzees can be extremely violent towards chimpanzees not in their group, and we're genetically close to them, but we're genetically closer to the much more peaceful bonobos.
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Old 12-14-2012, 08:45 PM
 
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What does "Were people as violent before they started gathering into larger groups?" have to do with Science and Technology?
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Old 12-14-2012, 09:07 PM
 
Location: Canada
4,672 posts, read 8,093,743 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clintone View Post
Larger groups allow for greater specialization, which can lead to a better military.
With a better military, it might become more likely to use them for something, rather than fleeing from people you disagree with, or who desire your land.

Also, with smaller groups, the people close to you, and to the group's leader, will be closer to you and to that leader. Therefore, their lives will probably be worth more to you and to that leader, and the risks associated with initiating violence could decrease its likelyhood.

Also, with fewer members, the more valuable each member's skills are...particularly if they have some unique skill, such as that of a spearmaker or flintknapper, making it more of a blow to the group to lose them, further decreasing the likelyhood of desiring conflict.

Chimpanzees can be extremely violent towards chimpanzees not in their group, and we're genetically close to them, but we're genetically closer to the much more peaceful bonobos.
We don't need to speculate, we have ethnographies on traditional hunter gatherer societies that outline how aggression took place and why. I can tell you that from the ethnographies I've read that yes, hunter gatherer societies at paleolithic levels of technology in small nomadic tribes did, and still do, sometimes engage in inter-group warfare and occasional intra-group violence as well. End of story. Alot this data is from the early twentieth century, when the reach of nation states in areas of some colonial possessions was very weak and people were still living without any outside influence as they had for thousands years, but pre-agricultural man still does exists in Papua New Guinea and the Amazon and you can just go up to them and ask them.
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Old 12-16-2012, 08:26 PM
 
Location: Missouri, USA
3,923 posts, read 2,725,939 times
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Originally Posted by plwhit View Post
What does "Were people as violent before they started gathering into larger groups?" have to do with Science and Technology?
Anthropology is a science....
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Old 12-16-2012, 09:19 PM
 
Location: US Empire, Pac NW
5,008 posts, read 10,452,145 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BIMBAM View Post
We don't need to speculate, we have ethnographies on traditional hunter gatherer societies that outline how aggression took place and why. I can tell you that from the ethnographies I've read that yes, hunter gatherer societies at paleolithic levels of technology in small nomadic tribes did, and still do, sometimes engage in inter-group warfare and occasional intra-group violence as well. End of story. Alot this data is from the early twentieth century, when the reach of nation states in areas of some colonial possessions was very weak and people were still living without any outside influence as they had for thousands years, but pre-agricultural man still does exists in Papua New Guinea and the Amazon and you can just go up to them and ask them.
Man has killed man since the beginning. Period.

There's a wikipedia page dedicated to uncontacted tribes and there's a nice summary of how 30 members of a tribe in Brazil were slaughtered just because 1 hunter from another tribe got killed by one of the others. There are other stories about these tribes resisting the outside, going so far as to kill any modern men who stray or want to contact, and loggers in Brazil and other south american nations do get killed by natives who feel threatened by deforestation.
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Old 12-18-2012, 03:32 AM
 
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Back in the day, men killed men for very obvious reasons. Now, men kill each other for reasons that are largely unknown.
Think 9/11....for what reason did that happen? I still don't know. Just thinking about it, if you sell a product to a people, you want them to be able to buy it. It makes no sense.

Back in the day, my land, my village, my tribe, were mine. An affront to them was an affront to me. This was common to all people and all people knew this. Senseless murders weren't.

Back in the day, the uncivilized went about their lives systematically. African bush war, I know, was very systematic. It was designed at times to minimize casualties. No one really wanted to die, and death was an end only sought at the worst of times, and never on a mass scale. Bombs would have been unthinkabke. War was more a social dance. An art almost.

Back in the day, the strongest survived. The strongest dominated. If my tribe was strong, and we wanted your land, very few questions were asked. We took your land. You didn't want to go to war with us, we would obviously win.

Back in the day, land was plentiful. If I took your land, and I and my tribe wanted it, then your land was mine. No money. No contracts. You packed up, and you left. Or you stayed and were enslaved. Dissenters were killed. Their wives married into tribal blood, and life went on.

Now, we don't have that. With civilization, as defined by the West, came a new set of laws. Guns gave them the upper hand. It was a technology never before seen, or utilized in such numbers. We were colonized. We were enslaved.

They came to save the black man from himself. They forgot that their ancestors had the same ideas...and they were chased from their land despite it. We never needed saving. We were already living a worthy life. That's not to say we weren't improved. Indeed, we were. But fundamentally very little had changed. It's why they were not there in the first place. It's not because the African had not civilized, it was because the white man, their black ancestors, were forced off the land. They were the ones who left. They were the ones who were always destined to come back. The prophets said, 'be wary of the white man who shall return to us, our brothers'. We thought them crazy... a man, turned white, how impossible! Then we saw them...white as white snow. We welcomed them back. We treated them like gods. They had returned, so much to tell us, so much we could learn from them. When they left, because they thought they could escape the rules of nature, we laughed. Then when they came back, we were shamed. Some cried. Some worshipped them. Some sat back and observed. They had won. What more could we say?

However, they over relied on their new technology. They over extended their dominance. They were not worthy dominaters, they got drunk with power. Having only dominated their former dominaters for 2000 years, they thought the world would end before their new status would ever change.

And we arrive to today.

The story is far from complete. Different battle lines are being drawn. It was never just a black or white thing. So many other nations existed.

And, really, it matters little as the Asians, the small self focused group who kept largely to themselves, are about to put their stamp on things. The indigenous of the New Worlds, though largely inhibited in the North, still flourish in the South. As for the black-white dynamic, we're coming to a conclusion.

The offer always stands. But, perhaps, it'll be taken soon.

Who knows? I'll just stick around long enough to find out.

Last edited by dub dub II; 12-18-2012 at 03:57 AM..
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Old 12-19-2012, 12:50 PM
 
Location: Londonderry, NH
41,505 posts, read 49,538,721 times
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Default Were people violent?

Just watch a couple of packs of baboon or other primates in the wild. Violence is in out DNA and controlling it is what civilization is all about.
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