The Between The Old World And New World Essay

1181 Words Sep 3rd, 2015 5 Pages
Contact between different areas of the world is both beneficial and disastrous to the people and regions involved. Relative isolation allowed civilization in the New World to flourish, but imperialism in Europe threatened everything that had been established. When Europeans arrived in the New World and interacted with the natives, catastrophic diseases decimated the population, foods and plants were transported all over the world, animals were introduced and domesticated for their helpful purposes, and ideas and values were spread to aid the creation of European style civilization.
The most evident interactions between the Old World and New World were trailed by diseases. Europe had struggled with widespread disease in the past, but disease was a rarity in the New World. Due to their long period of isolation, American Indians fell subject to disease “…for their genetic material has been least tempered by the variety of world diseases (Crosby).” Smallpox, influenza and measles proved catastrophic as Indians did not possess the antibodies to fight these diseases. This resulted in the decimation of entire groups of Indians, killing upwards of 80 million people in one of the worst genocides the world has seen. Another uniquely spread disease was syphilis, which has “…settled down and became a permanent factor in human existence (Crosby).” The origin of syphilis is controversial, but it was distributed all over the world due to the migration of man. Sailors were the main…

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