The Natural Environment And Human Stewardship Of The New World

1471 Words Oct 21st, 2016 6 Pages
When Christopher Columbus sailed the ocean blue in 1492 the world had no idea what the effects on the environment would be. The interaction between the Europeans and the New World Inhabitants of North and South America and Africa, as well as Asia is still relevant in the ecological impact that took place between their encounters during the Age of Exploration and onward. The exchange of ideas was the utopian ideal but the utter truth was that the natural environment and human stewardship of that environment during this new global encounter was altered for the worse. This paper will examine the great exchange between different cultures and examine the ecological imperialism that was carried out by Europeans.
Sometimes there were bad motives and sometimes the effects that were being inflicted on the environment were done ignorantly. Europeans during the 15th and 16th century had no idea the choices they made would have such powerful effects on the environment. The term sustainability hadn’t even been uttered so therefore how can we blame the Europeans for their abuse of the New Worlds environments? Europeans through the Columbian Exchange brought African slaves “skilled in its cultivation” of rice or “Sativa” to North America. However history gives credit whereas “scholarship has uncritically attributed the presence of rice and its subsequent establishment in the Americas to Europeans who carried seed from Asia to Africa.” History writes that Africa “provided nothing…

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