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Tuesday, 20 December 2011

:: EmERGING pATTERNS OF cONTaCT, 1200 BCE - 1000 CE : :

     Historian do enjoy finding evidence that crucial aspects of the human experience started earlier than we once thought, as noted in the previous chapter. This part of their effort to elucidate the past and to bring it alive by making it unexpectedly relevant to more recent interests. Thus historians of medieval Europe, intrigued by the popularity of the Renaissance, long ago began to find " renaissance" in the 12th century. Modern mass consumerism, once thought to be a product of the Industrial Revolution later in the 19th century turns out to have started in Europe in the 17th-18th centuries well before industrialization and now historians are discovering consumer revolutions as early as the 14th century.

    The sexual revolution hailed or lamented in the 1960s turn to have started in the 1940s and 1950s and so it goes on. The list of revisions of initial statements of origin in the history of virtually every topic and every region is a long one.Sometimes the resulting findings are superficial or debatable sometimes ( as with consumerism) they seriously reoroent the ways we think about the past and about the causation of major change.

    World historians with their deep and growing interest in contact have devoted creative energies to uncovering and highlighting trade and other connections relatively early in human history. One result is the wide awareness of the so-called Silk Road ( more properly Roads) and the fascination with the exchanges and trade centers that formed its core.Indeed, the sil Road has probably won too much attention to the detriment of an awareness of other arguably equally important contact routes well before modern times.If this means that at least a brief survey of early patterns forms an important part of the backdrop to more in depth analysis of globalization in historical perspective then the implication is clearly valid.
    The big contact challenge for most regions before 1000CE, amid pervasive localism was to build network within larger regions like the Mediterranean basin or the Middle East that would facilitate trade and cultural and political exchange. Effort to reach beyond the larger regions though they did exist had only passing significance for the vast majority of the human population.

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