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Hum Hist 2 ho 10

Hum Hist 2 ho 10 - Human History Week 5 lecture 1 The...

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Human History Week 5, lecture 1 The industrial revolution 4/29/10 In some ways, there’s relatively little change in Eurasian core in 1,500 years between 100 and 1600 CE: cycling between empires, pushing energy capture up to the hard ceiling around 30,000-35,000 calories/person/day then falling back in collapses involving disease, migration, famine, state failure, and climate change Hence political economists conclude in late 18th century that nothing can ever change: humans are caught in a Malthusian trap But then around 1800, the hard ceiling is shattered Poets see it better than social scientists; “’Twas in truth,” said William Wordsworth, ... an hour Of universal ferment; mildest men Were agitated; and commotions, strife Of passion and opinion fill’d the walls Of peaceful houses with unquiet sounds. The soil of common life was at that time Too hot to tread upon; oft said I then, And not then only, “what a mockery this Of history; the past and that to come!” (William Wordsworth, The Prelude [1805] Book 9, lines 161-69)
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