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How and Why did Western Civilization Dominate the world??

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posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 11:59 AM
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a reply to: JoshuaCox

The Documentary "Guns, Germs and Steel" explains how Western Civilization managed to overtake all other civilizations.





posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 12:01 PM
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a reply to: JoshuaCox

Because they were the aggressors in modern history?

British have invaded nine out of ten countries.



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 01:46 PM
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Western civilization may have 'dominated' in a sense, but they have both been a benefit and a bane on this Earth.

I think many of your assumptions are incorrect in that Western civilization did not beat older civilizations. They are the descendants some of the older most developed civilizations in ancient times - in part, the Canaanite/Phoenician civilizations, which in turn is connected to the Sumerians; at least in part. Their ways/culture of war and plunder from the first Sumerian kings have been a great source of tragedies and suffering. On the other hand they brought development and technological innovation.

There has been so much assimilation and branching off of cultures, that you cannot really identify sides as many cultures who have fought against each other share a common genealogy.



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 01:49 PM
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posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 03:03 PM
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You can thank genetics religion pride courage determination patriotism fear hatred anger wealth brain power/education/training industry trade resources etc... but mostly mobility of troops...
edit on 29-12-2016 by 5StarOracle because: Word



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 05:27 PM
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originally posted by: DISRAELI

originally posted by: JoshuaCox
They [the Chinese] never left Asia though.

This is a very important issue, because there was a time before Columbus when the Chinese were venturing out on to the high seas and got as far as Africa (1433).
The puzzling decision to draw back from such ventures is one of the key turning-points in world history, because it left the field clear for the Europeans who were about to arrive.




I'm with you and there are plenty of other civilizations who beat western civilization in whatever technological field.

That's why I think it was the advent of total war mixed with a swirl of Roman refuse to be beaten.

Other civilizations would fight "a normal warefare ", make your opponent quit and pay his taxes.

The fire fathers of western civilization the Greeks, then the romans, then the Vikings, then the British, now America have all been willing to go to total war.



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 05:30 PM
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originally posted by: nOraKat
Western civilization may have 'dominated' in a sense, but they have both been a benefit and a bane on this Earth.

I think many of your assumptions are incorrect in that Western civilization did not beat older civilizations. They are the descendants some of the older most developed civilizations in ancient times - in part, the Canaanite/Phoenician civilizations, which in turn is connected to the Sumerians; at least in part. Their ways/culture of war and plunder from the first Sumerian kings have been a great source of tragedies and suffering. On the other hand they brought development and technological innovation.

There has been so much assimilation and branching off of cultures, that you cannot really identify sides as many cultures who have fought against each other share a common genealogy.



Older civilizations who were assimilated into western culture, not that over ruled it.

That's my point is a total war mentality might be the only thing they were first in.



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 05:39 PM
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originally posted by: feoil
This is an excellent question and the reasons for the emergence of the West as a world power can be explained with reference to four main areas. The OP brushed on two, namely military and economic might, but also worth considering are the legal and religious differences of early modern Europe compared with the rest of the world.

The development of Europe's military prowess can be explained by the the constant competition experienced by the smaller states of the Holy Roman Empire (the Habsburgs) being in constant competition with French, Swedish, Prussian and indeed Russian and Polish ambitions. When one of these powers, the Swedes for instance developed a military advantage, the others either followed suit or expired. This perpetual arms race, encouraged by the constant competition of the various European hegemonies gave Europe a clear military advantage over any other world power.

This is also true of early modern European economics. The banking systems developed in renaissance Italy and later improved upon by the the financial houses of the Dutch Republic and then the Bank of England provided Europe with not only with reliable and trustworthy forms of specie but also several of the financial instruments we are familiar with today, mortgages, credit and insurance for instance. This allowed Europe to easily finance expansion and trade. One must also consider the difficult lessons learned by the Spanish and the Dutch in dealing with various crashes in the silver and tulip markets.

Most important to the encouragement of successful innovation and trade was the legal protection of private property, both intellectual and actual. Europe's political evolution from feudal, to autocratic to democratic orders. Political scientist might describe this as the move from "limited access order" States to "open access order" States. Any system which protects the private citizen from the excesses of the State is sure to flourish. This is bourn out in recent history also with the fall of the Soviet Union. What is the point in innovating when the State can just take it?

Finally, and I think most importantly is the shift in religious outlook brought about by the Reformation. Prior to this, the main religious groups viewed work as a penance, something to be avoided. Max Weber described this shift in attitude as "the Protestant Work Ethic". Here, rather than being a penance, the protestant viewed work as pious and to be embraced as prayer. This encouraged the industriousness that drove all the developments mentioned earlier.

It is not enough to suggest that Europe's rise be attributed to military prowess alone. This had to driven and supported by political, economic, legal and most importantly cultural advancement too.

Feoil





Not just militarily plenty of other civilizations beat them militarily at various times.



A total war mentality is what I meant.



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 05:44 PM
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a reply to: JoshuaCox

The industrial revolution is the main culprit i imagine or the influence western navies had regrading colonization of the new world and Australia.



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 05:47 PM
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a reply to: JoshuaCox

There's actually no one straight answer, but a gradual tide of many things, with many turning points. One good book on this topic (you can find the series on Youtube as well) is Guns, Germs, and Steel (Wikipedia link). Diamond's theory, however, falls apart around the 15th century, however but it's a good model for the earlier rise of power.

The idea of "total war" is much older than Alexander. Probably the earliest "greatest war leader" is Thutmoses III, stepson of Hatshepsut who is called "The Napoleon of Egypt." He was not the first to do a big land grab beyond the borders of his country, but he was the most successful until surpassed by Alexander the Great.

edit on 29-12-2016 by Byrd because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 06:01 PM
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originally posted by: JoshuaCox
Imho I think it MIGHT have been about 2 things.

1) the unwillingness to admit defeat and bend the knee. Even when they were quite thoroughly defeated lol.

2) the invention of total war, meaning mobilizing your entire population and fighting a battle of anihilation.


Actually, none of your examples mobilized the entire population (and you've rather ignored China and India and the Americas). The one example I can think of a completely militarized society was Sparta - which was able to survive due to some education principles that we would find horrific (including state-cultural and sanctioned pederasty)- AND - by turning around 90% of the people into slaves (as they conquered additional territory, they turned them into slaves and stripped any native Spartan who did not join in the military lifestyle of all but very basic citizenship rights.)

They killed unfit children - those boys who survived were taken from their families at age seven and raised to be loyal to their military unit (phalanx). Women also had to pass a fitness test.

This ultra-military society was successful only for awhile.



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 06:07 PM
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Aryans are much alike - spiritually speaking, the rapaciousness of the west can be linked all the way back to the rapaciousness of the Aryans i.e. the founders of the city states and kingdoms of today's Iran-Afghanistan region.

The cultic narcissism of course is not unique to the Aryans, with the Egyptian and Sumerian elite following a similar pathway. But nevertheless, these desert empires did not have the resources afforded to the more northerly Aryan peoples. Thus, imperialism worked more naturally in the north than the south; and because of the unique location of the Greek isles, as in the case of the British isles, the raider always has more work to do than the invaded; and since the Greeks were Aryans, with many of its fighters initiates of antinomian cults, I'm sure they were good at placing traps.

So that's it. Geography plays a huge part in the birth and growth of empire. So unless you think your geographic position to be a sign of "chosenness" - a very popular fantasy - the success of the greeks is less a function of their genes, than of their geographical position relative to the persians.

Similarly, the British had an advantage over mainland Europe, and America an advantage over Britain. The principle is: empire is very hard to hold the farther you move from its cultural and political center.



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 06:58 PM
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originally posted by: JoshuaCox

originally posted by: Sahabi
a reply to: JoshuaCox

The ethnic Huaxia and Han people of China are just as ancient and advanced as the empires listed in the OP. They have launched countless campaigns of assimilation, total war, and annihilation against the people of Jiu-Li, San-Miao, Nanman, Nanzhao, Tai, Bai, Yi, Yao, Bo, Miao/Meo, Hmong, and other indigenous eastern-Asian minorities.

Why do you think your reasoning led to the rise of global Western rule, yet the same reasoning saw China as a powerful unifying isolationist?
They never left Asia though.


The Chinese travelled to India, Iran, Central Asia, Syria, the Middle East, Africa, and were also connected to Greater Europe by the Silk Road. The Chinese also beat the Europeans to many naval explorations of the Indian Ocean. There are even researchers advocating the view that China discovered the Americas before Christopher Columbus. Furthermore, the land mass of China is so vast, that its campaigns for a unified and expanded China rival that of most European conquests of war.

Chinese Exploration (Wikipedia)

Zheng He (Wikipedia)

Zheng He and Chinese Exploration (Pre-Colombian Transoceanic Travel)

Ancient Chinese Explorers (NOVA)



edit on 12/29/16 by Sahabi because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 07:57 PM
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originally posted by: JoshuaCox
That's why I think it was the advent of total war mixed with a swirl of Roman refuse to be beaten.

The fire fathers of western civilization the Greeks, then the romans, then the Vikings, then the British, now America have all been willing to go to total war.


Actually, they've all been beaten and the desire for "all-out war" wasn't something that everyone agreed on.

The Greeks were never a unified country/group until the 1800's Ancient Greece was actually several loose confederations of city-states that changed sides (Peloponnesian wars, etc.) Athens exiled one of its generals for being too much of a warmonger. The Romans were beaten and retreated from northern Germany and abandoned England (after being beaten by many, including Boudiccia), the Vikings were more of a cultural group than a unified empire and most were farmers.

Many British opposed wars/expansion - and a search thorugh history will show that America has a long history of anti-war groups.



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 08:11 PM
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Europe is generally behind the ottomans tech wise until at least 1400 if not latter.
Western Europe takes a long time to create a gap from the ottomans. The ottomans and the barbary states drag eastern and southern europe down when western europe accelerates.
Europe's true break away is the industrial revolution and enlightenment, other societies could not or would not adapt, Japan and Russia to an extent were the only ones who could keep the social upheaval down long enough for the results to show.
Somewhere's around 1800 western europe broke free of its growth constraints that had binded all nations preceding them.

If we had to blame Europe's rise on One thing it would be the black death. It targeted the poor the hardest.
It caused the rejection of the church as all powerful,
Caused a labor shortage which changed the lord to serf interaction. improved diet for everyone, raised wages for all.
This excess land and advances in banking help create the renaissance

Over time these changes in society build up. It was a snowball gaining steam and no government could or tried that hard to stop it.
Europeans exporting their population to the rest of the world helped keep a floor on wages, and this new populace generated more trade with europe. It was a place where exports could go.
The actual gains from new world lands to their empires are not that great. spanish netherlands brought in 7 times more revenue than all of their new world possessions.
Later and places like india and the dutch east indies are a different story.



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 08:19 PM
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originally posted by: gladtobehere
a reply to: JoshuaCox

Because they were the aggressors in modern history?

British have invaded nine out of ten countries.



Not so much aggressors, plenty of other countriesxinvaded others, but the type of aggression...

The willingness for the entire countries population to mobilize tward a common goal, such as during WW2.



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 08:23 PM
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originally posted by: Byrd

originally posted by: JoshuaCox
That's why I think it was the advent of total war mixed with a swirl of Roman refuse to be beaten.

The fire fathers of western civilization the Greeks, then the romans, then the Vikings, then the British, now America have all been willing to go to total war.


Actually, they've all been beaten and the desire for "all-out war" wasn't something that everyone agreed on.

The Greeks were never a unified country/group until the 1800's Ancient Greece was actually several loose confederations of city-states that changed sides (Peloponnesian wars, etc.) Athens exiled one of its generals for being too much of a warmonger. The Romans were beaten and retreated from northern Germany and abandoned England (after being beaten by many, including Boudiccia), the Vikings were more of a cultural group than a unified empire and most were farmers.

Many British opposed wars/expansion - and a search thorugh history will show that America has a long history of anti-war groups.
No matter if there was an opposition party or not, once war had been decided, all did their part.


The Greeks all mobilized and joined forces to combat Persia, then went all total war on each other.

The romans would give up a providence but not Rome itself.

I wasn't saying they always won, but even when defeated refused to quit.



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 08:58 PM
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Well we need a better description of what is really meant by Western Civilization, is western civilization which could include pre Greco/Roman civilization in Europe an Idea, or just groups of people rising and falling over the centuries, or is it a Christian ideal which would come later, as to why I think European Christian dominated civilization came to dominate much of the globe ,rest on a couple of things, the accumulation of knowledge, improvement in weapon's technology and mass production, especially since the renascence, but it was by no means a given that western civilization as we sought to define it would win out, especially since the rise of Islam kept western Christians in check for 700yrs that's quite along time.
edit on 29-12-2016 by Spider879 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 09:04 PM
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originally posted by: JoshuaCox
The Greeks all mobilized and joined forces to combat Persia, then went all total war on each other.

The unification was for a fairly short time and marked by squabbles within the alliances.


The romans would give up a providence but not Rome itself.

In fact, they had to ransom Rome from the Celts - Brennius sacked it after Allia and the Senators had to ransom it (until they were rescued, and the Visigoths, the Vandals, and more.


I wasn't saying they always won, but even when defeated refused to quit.

In fact, there are many cases where the Roman troops cut and run (battle of Allia, for one) and Rome was eventually absorbed into the Papal States.

And they did quit parts of the Empire. Constantine recalled them from Britain.



posted on Dec, 29 2016 @ 09:16 PM
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a reply to: Byrd

Not to mention backing off from Meroetic Kush after their successes in Egypt and Northwest Africa, they also found themselves paying out bribes to frontier tribes not to cross into Roman ruled Egypt, so in some instances they could be made to behave.
edit on 29-12-2016 by Spider879 because: (no reason given)



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