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MTpaper - AmyCallaway Midterm Essay Exam History1111 The...

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Amy Callaway Midterm Essay Exam History 1111 The environment in ancient civilizations influenced the culture in a dramatic way. “Environmental Determinism” controlled what the economy, trade, and politics of a region was like. Mesopotamia and Egypt were several of the major civilizations which emerged in ancient times. These first civilizations rose to high status’ then completely disappeared altogether. How does an entire civilization vanish? Many factors may be responsible. Many researchers believe in “Environmental Determinism” which is the view of the physical aspects of one’s environment rather than social conditions determine one’s culture 1 . Many scholars suppose the physical surroundings in Ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt contributed to culture and enhancement of the civilization. Could the environment be a sole contributor to a society’s culture? Environmental Determinists believe so. The physical conditions in ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt shaped the societies which thrived in the regions. Mesopotamia ran irrigation ditches from the Euphrates and Tigris rivers to receive water the people so desperately needed. The unpredictable rain fall in the area was a major challenge to overcome; the Mesopotamians built levees to contain rivers during the rain which worked except in major floods. The rivers were higher than the level of the land thus water that settled in the fields could not easily drain of. Consequentiality the sodium from the water and the ground caused layers of salt to cover the Earth. The Mesopotamian’s knew the ground needed to be left alone however the rulers decided to farm the land even with the layers of salt. Wheat and barley were planted, but 1 1  Environmental determinism. (2007, September 12). In  Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia Retrieved 16:53, October 1, 2007, from  http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?
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