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Forum LockedJared Diamond North-South axis thesis

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Akolouthos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-May-2009 at 22:57
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Diamond's thesis is not that it is impossible for plants and animals to spread from north to south or vice versa.

It is simply that they spread more easily to similar climates. I'll go on believing that until someone shows me roses blooming wild in the open Sahara.


Would you accept an image that has been heavily photoshopped?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-May-2009 at 23:16

Diamond arguments on the north-south theory don't resist analysis. He doesn't take into account that the East Asian foods are quite different from Europeans, for instance. He didn't take into account either that cows live from Sweeden to Congo. etc.

The expansion east-west wasn't instantaneous either, like Diamond pretends. It could have easily taken several milenia.
 
So what we have here, except a case of bad scholarship?
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote edgewaters Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 04:04
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Diamond arguments on the north-south theory don't resist analysis. He doesn't take into account that the East Asian foods are quite different from Europeans, for instance. He didn't take into account either that cows live from Sweeden to Congo. etc.

Well, exactly. The axis of diffusion for the most important cereal crops of Eurasia - rice and wheat - wasn't east-west at all. How many rice paddies are there in Germany or Spain, again?

Those two most important crops actually spread along north-south axis. Wheat was first domesticated in the Middle East, and spread from there north and south, such that it was the main cereal crop from northern Europe to southern Africa. It did reach China, but not until quite late, a thousand years after it had achieved widespread penetration of Europe and Africa. And its importance was never nearly so great as it was in the west - rice remained the king of cereal crops in Asia, wheat was relatively low in order of importance (with other crops like soybeans falling behind rice, and wheat somewhere down the list).

Rice simply didn't spread much along the east-west axis at all. However, it did spread north-south and crossed several major climatic zones in doing so. From its origins along the Yangtze River, it spread to southern tropical regions as far south as Malaysia and Sri Lanka, all the way north to quite temperate climates such as Korea and Japan.

Animals like horses, pigs, chickens, etc readily spread along the east-west axis. They spread along a north-south axis just as readily, though. Vikings and Masai both relied heavily on cattle. The most important domesticated plants, though, generally did not spread all that well along the east-west axis. There's a reason wheat and cattle were so important from Scandinavia to Kenya, but not so much in China. Just as there's a reason England isn't covered in rice paddies.



Edited by edgewaters - 27-May-2009 at 04:13
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fantasus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 06:05
Originally posted by edgewaters edgewaters wrote:

Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Diamond arguments on the north-south theory don't resist analysis. He doesn't take into account that the East Asian foods are quite different from Europeans, for instance. He didn't take into account either that cows live from Sweeden to Congo. etc.

Well, exactly. The axis of diffusion for the most important cereal crops of Eurasia - rice and wheat - wasn't east-west at all. How many rice paddies are there in Germany or Spain, again?

Those two most important crops actually spread along north-south axis. Wheat was first domesticated in the Middle East, and spread from there north and south, such that it was the main cereal crop from northern Europe to southern Africa. It did reach China, but not until quite late, a thousand years after it had achieved widespread penetration of Europe and Africa. And its importance was never nearly so great as it was in the west - rice remained the king of cereal crops in Asia, wheat was relatively low in order of importance (with other crops like soybeans falling behind rice, and wheat somewhere down the list).

Rice simply didn't spread much along the east-west axis at all. However, it did spread north-south and crossed several major climatic zones in doing so. From its origins along the Yangtze River, it spread to southern tropical regions as far south as Malaysia and Sri Lanka, all the way north to quite temperate climates such as Korea and Japan.

Animals like horses, pigs, chickens, etc readily spread along the east-west axis. They spread along a north-south axis just as readily, though. Vikings and Masai both relied heavily on cattle. The most important domesticated plants, though, generally did not spread all that well along the east-west axis. There's a reason wheat and cattle were so important from Scandinavia to Kenya, but not so much in China. Just as there's a reason England isn't covered in rice paddies.

I do´nt say You are without point, but have some objections; Wheat is for all I know not "the main"  traditional cereal crop where You say, here in northern Europe.
Many places rather modest.
Wheat crops in South Africa may hardly be a counter argument, since its lattitude ( and climate) are as Middle East or northern Africaq, different from tropical Africa! southern Europe are not only much more west to the rice regions of East Asia, but at least at itrs northern edge, and Germany much closer to the Pole. From geography lessons and other reading I remember that meditteranean (and Middle eastern) climate are rather different from East Asia - much drier, and Rice demands rain or irrigation. There are other crops in east Asia, especially Northern China, and we should also add, that China lies on average more to the south than Europe and even to the "main" US of A.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 10:34
In Northern China, for example in the Shanxi and Shaanxi provinces, wheat is today much more important than rice.

Edited by Carcharodon - 27-May-2009 at 20:45
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote edgewaters Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 11:00
Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:

I do´nt say You are without point, but have some objections; Wheat is for all I know not "the main"  traditional cereal crop where You say, here in northern Europe.
Many places rather modest.
Well, barley and flax are different species than wheat, it's true, but they were domesticated at about the same time, in the same place (the Fertile Crescent) and spread together to the same sorts of locations.
Quote Wheat crops in South Africa may hardly be a counter argument, since its lattitude ( and climate) are as Middle East or northern Africaq, different from tropical Africa!
True, but wheats aren't just grown in South Africa. They were grown throughout the continent. It's grown in Zimbabwe, Nigeria, Ethiopia, the Sudan, Tanzania, Kenya, etc. Pretty much all up and down the eastern side of the continent (and along the northern side, too). It's true there isn't much wheat grown in places like the Congo, but then, historically, there never were many cereal crops grown there at all. The main crops today are rice and corn, and they only arrived recently.
Quote southern Europe are not only much more west to the rice regions of East Asia, but at least at itrs northern edge, and Germany much closer to the Pole. From geography lessons and other reading I remember that meditteranean (and Middle eastern) climate are rather different from East Asia - much drier, and Rice demands rain or irrigation. There are other crops in east Asia, especially Northern China, and we should also add, that China lies on average more to the south than Europe and even to the "main" US of A.

True, but most of Europe gets quite good rainfall. Rice probably wouldn't do well in southern Europe, but it would do quite well throughout much of western, central, and eastern Europe. It doesn't mind a temperate climate; it grows quite well in Korea and Japan, which have comparable temperatures to those parts of Europe.

And if the climates of the Middle East, Europe, and China are so different - enough to block diffusion of the chief cereal crops - then we haven't got an east-west axis.

If you really look at, say, the Koppen climate classifications and their distribution on a map, particularly if you look at the Cfb climate and realize that it permeates Central America and the Andes due to altitude, you'll see that there's actually much fewer climatic barriers to the spread of plants along the north-south axis of the Americas than there is to the east-west axis of Eurasia; the only climate that really spans that axis is the taiga, which isn't very suited to agrarianism! Meanwhile, in America, the Cfb climate is found from southern Argentina all the way to Alaska, and exists in some place at every latitude inbetween, including the most important breadbaskets (eg southwestern South America and the Mississipi River watershed).

Originally posted by Carcharodon Carcharodon wrote:

In Norhtern China, for example in the Shanxi and Shaanxi provinces wheat is today much more importance than rice.

Today, yes, and in a couple of local provinces, yes.



Edited by edgewaters - 27-May-2009 at 11:11
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fantasus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 11:46
Originally posted by edgewaters edgewaters wrote:

 

True, but most of Europe gets quite good rainfall. Rice probably wouldn't do well in southern Europe, but it would do quite well throughout much of western, central, and eastern Europe. It doesn't mind a temperate climate; it grows quite well in Korea and Japan, which have comparable temperatures to those parts of Europe.

I think that rice has in fact been grown in southern parts of Europe, especially in moorish territories in Spain in irrigated areas(so it may be long ago, more than 1000 years), and it has been grown in other parts as well for some centuries.  I have never heard it has been widespread anywhere in Europe though.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lirelou Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 16:17
Both Korea and Japan receive the Monsoon. Japan's climate is warmer, because the Sea of Japan mitigates the continental weather patterns coming from the west. Korea's Yellow Sea is too shallow to do so, so Korea receives much harsher winter weather, comparable to Japan's northernmost island, Hokaido. Geography in Korea favors rice production in the lower, western coastal plains, where farmers can plant the seedling relatively early, usually in greenhouses. In a 1940 book on "Monsoonal Asia", Japan was ranked first in rice production per hectare, and Korea second, for all Asian rice growing areas, though Korea's total harvest was smaller than Thailand and French Indochina's.  Despite the fact that Seoul lies at the same latitude as Norfolk, Virginia (in the American south), the Eurasian land mass turns the weather bitterly cold very quickly about mid-November. When the "Manchurian Express" blows, rivers can freeze solid overnight. Spring for Korea begins on 1 March, and is often accompanied by a "Yellow Wind" that blows loess in from the Gobi desert.

As for rice itself, North American Indians harvested wild rice, as did the Europeans who followed. This was always small scale, but continues today. The U.S. is among the world's largest rice producers, with most being grown for export, thought that is changing. California, Texas, Arkansas, and Louisiana are major rice producing states.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 20:41
Originally posted by Akolouthos Akolouthos wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Diamond's thesis is not that it is impossible for plants and animals to spread from north to south or vice versa.

It is simply that they spread more easily to similar climates. I'll go on believing that until someone shows me roses blooming wild in the open Sahara.


Would you accept an image that has been heavily photoshopped?

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Only if it includes the smell.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 20:44
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

According to Diamond the Inca Empire was impossible...
No it isn't. I think you need to read a little more of Diamond's work.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 21:38
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

According to Diamond the Inca Empire was impossible...
No it isn't. I think you need to read a little more of Diamond's work.
 
I have read "Guns, Germs and Steel" and "Colapse". I agree with him that initial conditions are related to geography, plants and animals. However, I think he jumps to conclusions too much. He cites those fantasious 90% extinctions in the Americas with easy, and extrapolates theories like these about east-west south-north spreadings. I think he is the one that should be more rigurous. After all, he is the famous guy, not me.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 21:58
Originally posted by edgewaters edgewaters wrote:

Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Diamond arguments on the north-south theory don't resist analysis. He doesn't take into account that the East Asian foods are quite different from Europeans, for instance. He didn't take into account either that cows live from Sweeden to Congo. etc.

They're not the same cows. See below about the Masai. 'Cows' in  general covers a wide variety of different female animals, some of which spend their time swimming around in the ocean.
 
You'll be arguing next that Diamond is wrong because there are plants and animals everywhere.
Quote
Well, exactly. The axis of diffusion for the most important cereal crops of Eurasia - rice and wheat - wasn't east-west at all. How many rice paddies are there in Germany or Spain, again?
And how many are there east of Germany? Take a look at a map.
North China grows wheat, not rice. And for that matter Spain produces rice as does Italy.
 
Rice obeys the east-west, similar latitude rule better than a lot of things. So does wheat.
Quote

Those two most important crops actually spread along north-south axis. Wheat was first domesticated in the Middle East, and spread from there north and south, such that it was the main cereal crop from northern Europe to southern Africa.

 
Wheat isn't the main cereal crop in Africa. The main indigenous one is millet, plus nowadays maize and rice. Yes it spread a little bit north and south from the original point, but it stayed in more or less the same latitude band. Much the same is true of rye and barley.  
Quote
It did reach China, but not until quite late, a thousand years after it had achieved widespread penetration of Europe and Africa. And its importance was never nearly so great as it was in the west - rice remained the king of cereal crops in Asia, wheat was relatively low in order of importance (with other crops like soybeans falling behind rice, and wheat somewhere down the list).
Rice remained the dominant crop in south China, SE Asia, and the India subcontinent. It spread to West Africa and Egypt and here and there in the northern Mediterranean areas. Even after the 16th century the parts of America where it grows are west (or east) of the areas where it grows in Eurasia-Africa.

Quote

Rice simply didn't spread much along the east-west axis at all.
Only all around the world.
Quote
 However, it did spread north-south and crossed several major climatic zones in doing so. From its origins along the Yangtze River, it spread to southern tropical regions as far south as Malaysia and Sri Lanka, all the way north to quite temperate climates such as Korea and Japan.
Japan and South Korea, especially the bits that grow rice,  are pretty well east of the Yangtse Valley. The southern tip of Japan is in fact exactly due east of the mouth of the Yangtse. It certainly wasn't a big hop north. Malaysia and Sri Lanka are further south but not all that far, and with the exception of coastal areas of East Africa, it pretty well stays in the latitudes of South China/Indonesia all the way across to California. (Where it's wet enough for it.
 
You don't find it outside those latitudes.
Quote Animals like horses, pigs, chickens, etc readily spread along the east-west axis. They spread along a north-south axis just as readily, though. Vikings and Masai both relied heavily on cattle.
NOT the same animals though. Masai cattle are zebus, bos indicus, not bos taurus.
Quote
 
The most important domesticated plants, though, generally did not spread all that well along the east-west axis. There's a reason wheat and cattle were so important from Scandinavia to Kenya, but not so much in China. Just as there's a reason England isn't covered in rice paddies.
I think that's just plain wrong, as I've pointed out.
Of course there's a reason England isn't covered in rice paddies: rice won't grow there, not in the open anyway. But Engaland isn't east or west of any of the rice-growing areas either. You really do have to look at a map.
 
All the rice-growing areas occur in a band that spreads east-west around the globe between about 20 S and 40 N. All the wheat-growing areas have their own band - which admittedly overlaps a bit. Of course all rice doesn't grow on exactly the same latitude. I obviously spreads a bit north and south but mostly it spreads east-west.
 
You reckon you find chipmunks, bears, bison, skunks, raccoons, squirrels in the Amazon forest? Alligators in Nova Scotia? Parrots in Patagonia? Pheasants in the Congo?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-May-2009 at 22:25
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

...
They're not the same cows. See below about the Masai. 'Cows' in  general covers a wide variety of different female animals, some of which spend their time swimming around in the ocean.
 
What do you mean by "they aren't the same cows". Don't they say "mooooh" and produce milk? Confused
 
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

...
You'll be arguing next that Diamond is wrong because there are plants and animals everywhere.
 
There you go. Jumping to conclusions again. You didn't took the time to read about the arguments above, particularly on maize.
Climate depends on altitude as much as latitude. That was the first point made here, that Diamond didn't consider. Besides, he didn't consider the importance of natural barriers like the Sahara desert.
 
 
 
 


Edited by pinguin - 27-May-2009 at 22:25
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-May-2009 at 15:30
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

...
They're not the same cows. See below about the Masai. 'Cows' in  general covers a wide variety of different female animals, some of which spend their time swimming around in the ocean.
 
What do you mean by "they aren't the same cows". Don't they say "mooooh" and produce milk? Confused
So do a lot of human females.
 
They're not the same because they belong to different species.
Quote
 
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

...
You'll be arguing next that Diamond is wrong because there are plants and animals everywhere.
 
There you go. Jumping to conclusions again. You didn't took the time to read about the arguments above, particularly on maize.
Yes I did. You didn't take the time to read my post or even to follow up my reference to later, or you wouldn't have replied that way on the first point. I explained later with regard to the Masai.
Quote
Climate depends on altitude as much as latitude.
It also depends on closeness to the sea, and to underwater currents and a whole lot else.
 
However there's a reason one talks about 'tropical plants'. It's because they grow in the tropics. And about polar bears, because they live around the north pole.
Quote
That was the first point made here, that Diamond didn't consider. Besides, he didn't consider the importance of natural barriers like the Sahara desert.
You appear to be pontificating without knowledge, not for the first time. It would appear you haven't even read the book. In fact Diamond pays a lot of attention to altitude, for instance in going into great detail about the influence of the large range of altitudes in the Fertile Crescent. (Look at page 140 of the paperback.) He also considers in many areas the importance of the Sahara both as a divider and as a crossable with difficulty barrier.
 
I started out in this thread assuming you knew something about Diamond's suggestions. It appears you don't have anything but probably a second or third-hand fuzzy idea of them.
 
Smart-ass cracks about cows mooing are no substitute for knowing what you are talking about. 
 


Edited by gcle2003 - 28-May-2009 at 15:32
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-May-2009 at 16:12
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

...
They're not the same cows. See below about the Masai. 'Cows' in  general covers a wide variety of different female animals, some of which spend their time swimming around in the ocean.
 
What do you mean by "they aren't the same cows". Don't they say "mooooh" and produce milk? Confused
So do a lot of human females.
 
They're not the same because they belong to different species.
 
NO. They aren't different species. You are jumping even wilder there. I have notice you like to call me ignorant, but you don't check your sources at all Confused. That has a very bad nickname in Spanish, I won't repeat here to prevent being banned Big smile. Well, you act as usual.
 
The African races of cattle come from the Middle East, probably crossing the red sea into Ethiopia, and from there spread with the Bantu expansion. Read please.
 
A cow is a cow, no matter the race it belong. The European cow didn't addapt to tropical Africa in the same way European men didn't either; but there were cows and men that did Confused
 
 
 
 
 


Edited by pinguin - 28-May-2009 at 16:35
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29-May-2009 at 16:15
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

...
They're not the same cows. See below about the Masai. 'Cows' in  general covers a wide variety of different female animals, some of which spend their time swimming around in the ocean.
 
What do you mean by "they aren't the same cows". Don't they say "mooooh" and produce milk? Confused
So do a lot of human females.
 
They're not the same because they belong to different species.
 
NO. They aren't different species.
Yes they are. European and Middle Eastern 'cattle' are bos taurus, Masai 'cattle' are bos  indicus. Check http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zebu_cattle . The word 'cattle' itself is like the word 'corn' - it refers to different species in different cultures. Even buffalo, which are a different genus (bubalus or syncerus) altogether, are referred to as 'cattle'. I don't know if they are but it wouldn't surprise me to hear bison referred to as 'cattle' either.
 
Taurus and indicus don't even look much alike.
 
And note that even in Asia, taurine cattle are found north of indicus cattle. Both species (subspecies if you like I suppose) spread much further east to west (right across the old world from Britain to Japan for taurus)
 
Quote
 
You are jumping even wilder there. I have notice you like to call me ignorant,
Only when what you claim is wildly at variance with established facts. I don't call you ignorant about America, especially Latin America.
Quote
but you don't check your sources at all Confused. That has a very bad nickname in Spanish, I won't repeat here to prevent being banned Big smile. Well, you act as usual.
Which is that I rigorously check assertions before I post them. I also read books I'm commenting on. I don't think you ever even bothered to check which species of cattle are found where.
Quote  
The African races of cattle come from the Middle East, probably crossing the red sea into Ethiopia, and from there spread with the Bantu expansion. Read please.
Sure there's an east-west belt that runs from Thailand to the horn of Africa. The point is that it's south of the belt in which you find bos taurus. South of that again indigenous cattle tends to be bubalus. (You find camels incidentally in a belt that overlaps the middle of the taurus and indicus belts.
 
All of these zones are of course quite wide in the north-south direction. The point is they cover much more territory east-west.
Quote  
A cow is a cow, no matter the race it belong. The European cow didn't addapt to tropical Africa in the same way European men didn't either; but there were cows and men that did Confused
As I said, you might as well argue that an animal is an animal no matter what race it belongs to. You'll find cows swimming in the seas around Australia, Indonesia, India and East Africa including the Red Sea. So are you going to argue that they're just the same old 'cows'? (And don't think I didn't check that.)
You don't appear to have read it. Apart from the fact that it doesn't even mention different species (either to say they are or they aren't) it says that African cattle came across from Yemen to Djibouti, which, if you look at a map is east-west. The article goes to some length to say they did not come down from Egypt. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29-May-2009 at 19:36
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

...
Yes they are. European and Middle Eastern 'cattle' are bos taurus, Masai 'cattle' are bos  indicus. Check http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zebu_cattle . The word 'cattle' itself is like the word 'corn' - it refers to different species in different cultures. Even buffalo, which are a different genus (bubalus or syncerus) altogether, are referred to as 'cattle'. I don't know if they are but it wouldn't surprise me to hear bison referred to as 'cattle' either.
 
Taurus and indicus don't even look much alike.
 
And note that even in Asia, taurine cattle are found north of indicus cattle. Both species (subspecies if you like I suppose) spread much further east to west (right across the old world from Britain to Japan for taurus)
 
...I don't think you ever even bothered to check which species of cattle are found where.
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Sure there's an east-west belt that runs from Thailand to the horn of Africa. The point is that it's south of the belt in which you find bos taurus. South of that again indigenous cattle tends to be bubalus. (You find camels incidentally in a belt that overlaps the middle of the taurus and indicus belts.
 
All of these zones are of course quite wide in the north-south direction. The point is they cover much more territory east-west.
 
...As I said, you might as well argue that an animal is an animal no matter what race it belongs to. You'll find cows swimming in the seas around Australia, Indonesia, India and East Africa including the Red Sea. So are you going to argue that they're just the same old 'cows'? (And don't think I didn't check that.)
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You don't appear to have read it. Apart from the fact that it doesn't even mention different species (either to say they are or they aren't) it says that African cattle came across from Yemen to Djibouti, which, if you look at a map is east-west. The article goes to some length to say they did not come down from Egypt. 
 
They aren't different species. They are different races, or subspecies if you preffer. Different species don't interbreed.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-May-2009 at 11:57
I wrote
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Both species (subspecies if you like I suppose)
Makes no real difference to the argument. As Diamond points out (one day you should read his book, it's full of stuff about N-S transmissions in the New World) the fact that in two different cultures you have different domesticated species or subspecies evolved from the same wild ancestor indicates that they were domesticated separately and didn't spread from one culture to the other.
 
Incidentally you might like to note that as well as spending a great deal of time considering the different circumstances of the New World, he also quotes examples where east-west transmission, for one reason or another, failed to take place, for example across to California, and from Natal to the Cape.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-May-2009 at 14:17
I have read his book. It is disgusting you suggest I lie.
I agree with Diamond that the availability of plants and animals was a factor that fired the starting of civilization. I also agree that the lack of certain animals put limitations to the development of civilizations. For instance, the lack of horses, but particularly of donkeys and oxes severily limitated de degree of development of civilizations like the Inca and Aztec.
However, once you have a large empire, or networks of cultures, those geographical factors are less important than Diamond pretends.
You should remember I am Chilean, and I live in the country that spreads the longest in latitude! The food people consumes at the northern part of my country is totally different from the south. However, in pre-Columbian times, chasquis used to go from Central Chile to Cuzco, and from Ecuador as well, in a matter of weeks! When the Spaniards reached Buenos Aires natives knew there was an Emperor at the other end of South America! And in Panama locals knew as well.
Trade spread from Central Chile and Argentina, for several routes, all the way to Mexico and Cuba and the states. In small jumps, of course. We aren't talking here about a Silk route, but locals in each place had some clues about what was going on beyond the horizon.
 
Now, knowing that, when Diamond say in his series writing didn't spread north-south because some misterious "force" that allow only spreadings east-west and not north-south. Well, in that particular case Diamon is talking nonsense. A single counter example is the spreading of the Mayan-style drum, that can find all over the Caribbean region in different latitudes! Metalurgy, Maize, textiles and even civilization itself probably spread from Peru to Mexico!
 


Edited by pinguin - 30-May-2009 at 14:20
"He who attempts to count the stars, not even knowing how to count the knots of the 'quipus'(counting string), ought to be held in derision."

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-May-2009 at 14:52
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Now, knowing that, when Diamond say in his series writing didn't spread north-south because some misterious "force" that allow only spreadings east-west and not north-south. Well, in that particular case Diamon is talking nonsense.
Quote me where he says that. There's no mysterious force that only allows spreading east and west in Diamond's writing. That's why I don't believe you read the boook. It's easy enough to prove me wrong - just quote me the part where he makes that rather silly assertion. Diamond isn't interested in metaphysics.
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A single counter example is the spreading of the Mayan-style drum, that can find all over the Caribbean region in different latitudes!
The entire Caribbean is in a very narrow latitudinal belt. In any case Jared's argument based on habitats applies to plants and animals not artefacts.
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 Metalurgy, Maize, textiles and even civilization itself probably spread from Peru to Mexico!
 
Jared says maize spread from Mexico to Peru (see table 7.1). And indeed he points out that they spread from there northward to the eastern United States, (see chapter 8, pages 150ff of the paperback version, among other places) but not from there westward to California (p.178).
 
You may claim that Diamond was wrong and the diffusion was from south to north, not from the middle northwards and downwards, but something it is purely ignorant to claim is that Diamond says it didn't spread on the north-south axis. Because he quite factually and obviously did. It can be shown that he did. Just by reading the book. I've even given you the references to look up.
 
You're making yourself look silly. You obviously haven't read the book - at the most you may have glanced at it or looked at the blurb somewhere.
 
I note you don't give any references to your claims.
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