World History Homework One Answers - Student Four

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World History Homework One – Joe B

(1) Knowing what happened before enables one to understand what is happening now and conjecture regarding what will happen in the future. If one does not know what happened, then he really does not know anything. Therefore, I hope to accomplish a better understanding of world history in order to better my understanding of the world as a whole.

Excellent.

(2) The one date that strikes me is the estimation listed for the creation of Adam and Eve. Though it is, perhaps, possible to have occurred then, it is not a necessary theological or historical point that it happened during that time period. This goes under the heading of the idea that the world was literally created 6000 years ago, whereas Christianity does not in fact require this impression to be accurate in order to retain legitimacy as a religion. Time is relative, as are the ways of expressing that time. Therefore it is not necessary that 6000 years is an essentially correct estimation. Moreover it is quite probable that, as has been the case on other subjects, our present understanding of matters is a tad lacking. Personally, I do not claim to know when these heretofore undocumented events occurred, but I still find the speculation thereof to be fascinating.

Good.

(3) Hammurabi was the first king of Babylon. It was his code, therefore, that was responsible for helping make that civilization successful. The thing about the Code of Hammurabi which is most striking is not the relative harshness or fairness, but its enormous length and belabored detail. There are literally 282 laws in the code (decidedly more enjoyable to skim through than to read word for word) on seemingly every possible scenario calling for “government intervention” and what should be done if said situations should arise. Talk about mandatory sentencing. Hammurabi, assuming he was the one responsible for the content of the code, probably would have made a good lawyer.

Superb analysis, with a witty conclusion!

(4) They were (in order) Sumer, Egypt, Babylonia, Israel, Assyria, Chaldea, and Persia. I would note that many of these empires overlapped in time, place, or even ethnicity. My favorite among these is probably Egypt, because it is the easiest (historically) to keep in context. Additionally, the Egyptians managed some exceptional feats in architecture and agriculture. Plus, a lot of Egyptian history and culture (including stuff we have not covered yet) is downright captivating.

Terrific answer. May use as the model.

(5) Probably the easiest controversy to see would be the one between the Israeli and Palestinian peoples, but I would be quick to point out that a large part of that conflict is surprisingly modern in basis. Though a number of people like to mention the seeming incessant, and probably to a degree true, feud between the Jewish and Islamic cultures, I think there is another point to be made on this same conflict, one that also can be traced back to ancient times. The link I’m referencing is, of course, Zionism. Though a name for a current political movement, it has its roots in an ancient belief. This general sentiment, the basis of which is debatable, dictates that the Hebrew (Jewish) people will never be safe unless existent within a thoroughly Zionist nation. The modern Zionist movement, though separate in its emergence, is essentially founded on this principle and is a major factor at work in the current Israeli-Palestinian struggle.

Good point, and you back it up well. Note that Islamic Palestinians also lay claim to Jerusalem with similar conviction and determination. Christianity is different in not being more abstract, and not based so much on geographic locations.

(6) The first, or Old Kingdom, of Egypt was free from foreign invaders, a fact that allowed prosperity and intellectual ferment enough for the construction of the Great Pyramid of Giza. The second phase, known as the Middle Kingdom, was a stage in which cultural advancement, namely in art and infrastructure, took place in Egypt. The third period of Ancient Egypt, which is called the New Kingdom, came after the foreign rule of the Hyksos and was hallmarked by military expansion. I personally do not possess a favorite out of the three, as I think the picture of Egypt is best viewed as a whole. However, if I were pressed to choose a favorite chapter in Egyptian History it would be that of the Old Kingdom as something about the construction of the Great Pyramid, perhaps the mystery shrouding it, is particularly alluring.

Good answer, which would benefit from some time periods also.

H3 – The construction of the pyramids by the Egyptians is one of the most confusing aspects of World History. How could an ancient civilization, without access even to the wheel until later in its lifespan, manage to construct such large structures with unparalleled precision and skill? I think it is important to understand that without modern distractions and the like the ancients (including the Egyptians) probably devoted far more time and energy in mastering the various arts to which they had access. That being said, time and energy, regardless of how ample, can never sufficiently account for genius, pure and simple. Literal explanations, naturally, are more complicated. The sadly flawed theory that the Egyptians used logs to build the Great Pyramid is incorrect for several simple reasons: a) the use of the logs is too close of a leap to the wheel for someone to use without making the connection, b) Egypt simply did not have the resources to muster such a supply of logs, and c) the logs would have snapped like twigs under the weight of multi-ton pieces of rock. If I had to guess how they managed to construct the pyramids I would assert that perhaps they used a series of planks and boards somehow slickened by oil, mud, water, or some thereof combination in addition with sledges to drag the pieces into place. In any event, even such an explanation cannot account for how precisely the measurements of the stones are, in addition to how spectacularly precisely the pyramid is aligned with the celestial heavens.

Spectacular answer to a spectacular mystery. Will use as a model!

H4 – The one thing from the lecture which caught my eye was the debate on laws versus language. Though I previously would have chosen laws, claiming that the same ideas for governance must hold true in all languages, I have since changed my position. Though law is indeed an integral portion of society, law could not exist at all without language. Therefore, language is more important by default because without it laws would not and could not exist. However, the significance of language is far more profound than mere concrete manifestations thereof can illustrate. Language shapes the human mind more so than any other single thing in the history of human civilization. When people think they do so almost exclusively in terms of words, whether they are the words they believe, the words they hear, or the words they are accustomed to using. Think about it this way: the laws of ancient Athens allowed it to thrive; however, would it have thrived nearly so much without having had arguably the most powerful language in the history of the world, Greek, as its base? Or better yet: would Athens have achieved the same environment and laws to accommodate great thinking had it been based in a different, less powerful, language? More simply, one must possess the terms of language within which to think and ultimately convey the things of which he has thought.

Fantastic answer. And a good demonstration of a principled open mind in changing your earlier view.
Superb, perfect answers: 80/80!
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