Essay on Personal Statement

930 Words May 18th, 2016 4 Pages


The Agricultural Revolution: Greatest Achievement or Greatest Failure?
Jared Diamond challenges his readers to think critically about how our modern society obtains its food and the havoc it has wreaked on humankind. His title “The Worst Mistake in the
History of the Human Race” clearly rings of passion but is it hyperbole? And what is the subject of his scrutiny? The adoption of agriculture. Modern American society is encultured in what he calls the “progressivist” mentality which is the belief that “human history over the past million years has been a long tale of progress” (Diamond, 1987). As explained by Diamond, progressivists celebrate the agricultural revolution crediting it with
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Although indirect, the archeologist’s report is still useful in debunking some of these myths about a hunter gather’s way of life which a progressivist believed for example it is an assumption that agriculture is responsible for allowing us free time that the hunter-gathers never had. In fact, the archeologists found quite the opposite was true: “It turns out that these people have plenty of leisure time, sleep a good deal, and work less hard than their farming neighbors. Average time devoted each week to obtaining food is only 12 to 19 hours for one group of Bushmen, 14 hours of less for the Hadza nomads of
Tanzania” (Diamond, 1987). In addition, the archaeologists found that hunter gathers had a better balance of other nutrients “the diets of surviving hunter-gathers provides more protein and a better balance of other nutrients” (Diamond, 1987).
While an indirect test is helpful, a direct test is more valid. At the time, paleopathologists were just beginning to utilize new technologies that enabled them to study disease in the remains of ancient peoples trough examination of teeth and bones which was evidence of the health in early humans. After examining the skeletons of hunter gathers and comparing them to their

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