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Civlization Essay

  • Submitted by: atifahmed
  • on August 4, 2015
  • Category: Social Issues
  • Length: 980 words

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Below is an essay on "Civlization" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

"There are many humorous things in the world; among them, the white man's notion that he is less savage than the other savages" (Twain, 213). In this Mark Twain quote from, Following the Equator: A Journey Around the World, one can easily substitute the word savage for the concept of civilization. A solid, working definition of civilization is difficult because perspectives on the term vary greatly and allow room for individual interpretation. To better understand the complexity of defining civilization, we will investigate some limitations of the traditional definitions of the term, as well as its historical use as a tool to justify the domination of native peoples.

The word civilization comes from the ancient Latin word civis, which means "inhabitant of a city." Therefore, in its purest sense, civilization is the ability of humans to live together in social groupings. The modern definition of civilization, however, has expanded and come to mean: an advanced state of intellectual, cultural, and material development in human society, marked by progress in the arts and sciences, the extensive use of record-keeping, including writing, and the appearance of complex political and social institutions (Akers Chacón, 6 February 2012). Western European colonists created division throughout history by using their culturally biased interpretations of civilization to preserve and maintain long standing structures of inequality.

Take for example the Kumeyaay Indians of Baja California; based upon their lack of written language and apparent hunter-gatherer method of subsistence, Spanish settlers did not consider their 10,000 year old society to be civilized. What the Spanish did not realize, was that it was the Kumeyaay who had planted, burned and kept the land healthy, and thriving for thousands of years. They were witnessing a cultural landscape as well as a natural one, a land sculpted by nature, but perfected by man (Carrico, 21). Although the Kumeyaay had no written...

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  • Submitted by: atifahmed
  • on August 4, 2015
  • Category: Social Issues
  • Length: 980 words
  • Views: 47
  • 1 rating(s)


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"Civlization". Anti Essays. 19 Dec. 2018


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Civlization. Anti Essays. Retrieved December 19, 2018, from the World Wide Web: http://parimatch-stavka7.com/free-essays/Civlization-758712.html

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