Summary: The Shaping Of Western Civilization

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The environment is known as the natural world in which we live. It is the surroundings or conditions in which a person, animal, or plant lives or operates. The environment affects our society everyday. What we decide to do during the day, where we go to vacation, and ultimately where we live. Luckily for us, our society and civilization had already been established with certain rules and customs. Those people who lived in the Mesopotamian, Egyptian, and Greek culture believed that the environment was everything to their society. Environment influenced religion in the same way in all three societies, but also influenced change and improving within political structures in each society.
Environment played a major role in the society of the
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Throughout ancient Egypt the society went through six different periods. Even though they went through six different periods they were able to stay together and unified. The Shaping of Western Civilization, pg.13, “Altogether, Egypt enjoyed more than twelve centuries of unity out of two millennia.” This was very different then the Mesopotamian culture where constant fighting led to different rules and cultures with different leaders. So what was the difference between the two societies? The answer was the center piece of the Egyptian culture and that is the Nile River. The society was protected by the Nile on each side of it. The Shaping of Western Civilization, pg. 15, “the red land was where the tombs were built; it was difficult to cross, which protected the people of the black land.” Protection meant no invaders, so there was never a worry about the potential for a new leader of their society. The Nile also gave the citizens a sense of comfort and belief that their king was the right one. The Nile River flooded at the same time every year so the people thought their king was the god Horus. The environment gave the citizens of the Egyptian culture stability, while the citizens of Mesopotamia did not know which set of ideas was right and …show more content…
The environment in Greece was split up by mountains, and other parts of Greece were split off into islands. This led to the creation of independent city-states called polis. These city states had their own ideas and customs, but also their own set of rules for how people should act. As time went on, growing tensions emerged between the different city states and environment was the culprit. There was a growing amount of population in Greece which caused over crowding in the polis. The overpopulation of the city states, according to The Shaping of Western Civilization pg.54, “a tension between rich and poor resulted.” Certain areas of Greece only had so many resources and with so many people in a certain area, the rich were able to get those resources while the poor were not. This tension between the two groups, which was caused by the environment, led to the constant conflict between wanting an oligarchy and democracy. The Greeks eventually adopted the idea of a democracy which proved to hold the polis together. The Ecclesiazure, pg. 4, democracy is present when Praxagora says, “in order to prepare the speech we must make in the Aseembly.” Instead of having a couple of individual’s rule, many citizens got to speak their ideas and come up with solutions. The down side to having a democracy is that women were still treated as if they had to right to be

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