Rhea asked in Social ScienceAnthropology · 9 months ago

How did the domestication and cultivation of grains and legumes lead to the building of cities and political systems?

2 Answers

  • 9 months ago

    The traditional view is that agricultural food production supported a denser population, which in turn supported larger sedentary communities, the accumulation of goods and tools, and specialization in diverse forms of new labor. The development of larger societies led to the development of different means of decision making and to governmental organization. Food surpluses made possible the development of a social elite who were not otherwise engaged in agriculture, industry or commerce, but dominated their communities by other means and monopolized decision-making.

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  • Anonymous
    9 months ago

    Before agriculture, humans were hunter/gatherers. Survival depends on success in hunting and gathering food. There is little time to do anything else. 13,000 years ago, the last ice age ended, and lots of large mammals became extinct. About 10,000 years ago, agriculture was invented and animals were domesticated for their meat. As a result of agriculture, food became more abundant, and people began settling down into permanent homes. Before that humans have been living in social groups with multiple males and females and they were promiscuous. Children were raised by the entire social group, and paternity is not certain. Men within a group bonded to defend themselves against wild animals,

    When people settled down to raise crops, they started living in more permanent dwellings than tents, as mobility is no longer an advantage. There was no need to follow prey animals around. There was no longer any need to live together or share women with other males. Paternity becomes more certain if one can keep other men from having sex with one's woman or women. Agriculture also resulted in population expansion. With more people, and less social bonding among men, law and order became more of a problem as more people live in close proximity to one another. Law and order became a necessity. The production of grain also leads for the first time for humans to have things of value that other humans may want to rob or steal. Vikings for example may raid villages for their possessions. To defend their valuable grains, people started to organize to defend their villages and towns.

    Before agriculture, when a large animal, such as an antelope or elephant is killed, people share in the carcass because meat cannot be stored since there was no refrigeration. We still see such sharing among whalers who live near the North Pole. Since grain can be stored for much longer, it does not have to be shared, and robbery or theft became a problem.

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