So are there any academic historical consensuses that you doubt, or thing there is strong evidence against? Historical narratives that historians generally agree upon, but that you think is either ignoring contrary evidence, or just based on flimsy evidence, etc
Elaborate your views more or less.
Pic unrelated...I swear. (there is already an active KANGZ thread, so please anything but that, ancient or modern.)
Pic SHOULD be related. Egyptologists are, speaking as an archaeologist, not very well-liked within archaeological circles because they have a tendency to make a statement and then stick by it despite evidence to the contrary. The absolute worst is Egyptologists who are actually Egyptian; the locals over there have a track record on par with a Russian tabloid and they don't like outsiders getting in on their turf, and they literally throw the relics in cardboard boxes without looking at them.
We don't know nearly enough about the purpose or way in which many Egyptian sites were built. For example, there's no actual evidence in support for the pyramids at Giza being tombs despite that being the official narrative. As far as we can objectively tell, they were bigass boondoggle infrastructural projects. And no one is allowed to actually figure out what they were or why they were built because Egyptologists on their turf.
That's not a real refutation, though. In fact, it's barely an argument. Yes, there are always reasons for the academic consensus to be as it is. That doesn't automatically mean that the academic consensus is RIGHT or that those are even GOOD reasons.
>when an author states that consensus exists on a particular matter but doesn't provide a single source
>be history professor
>write books for other historians and people interested in history
>assume that they know the academic consensus that's existed for decades
>muh peer review
does anyone else here think a lot of ancient narratives are built on flimsy evidence in general? historians seem to have to clear of a picture of the ancient world. they simply "know" this is how that was done, this is how they lived blah blah blah. can't we just admit we barely know shit?
How were you never taught that giving evidence is always necessary. (even if writing for peers always assume some don't know whaf you're talking about)
That's like history 101
As far as the actual thread goes (although I guess this is prehistory) ... I spent lots of time during my undergrad writing and trying to convince others that humans reached the new world far earlier than what was popularly assumed.
No, not me anyway.
But any attempt to find out the true motive for his assassination is inherently ruined, because the slightest digging reveals EVERYONE wanted him dead. Seriously, name an entrenched interest; they hated him and wanted to kill him.
Trying to figure out the Kennedy thing is less a question of "was there foul play", and more "which of these seventeen different groups with means and motive did it". We'll never know.
i wasn't talking about motives. i agree that it's so messy it's probably impossible to know who actually did it or why, but the evidence for oswald doing it is so slim that we can dismiss that hypothesis altogether
all we're left with is a big question mark, but at least that way we're being honest
>can't we just admit we barely know shit?
Good historians will do this, I read pic related and half the book was about how scarce and ambiguous the evidence is. Millar even states that it's impossible to write a social and political history of his topic.
I dislike those modern popular histories which are effectively just taking the accounts of the ancient historians and updating them slightly, without taking things like archaeological findings into account. Or modern 'biographies' of an ancient figure which are hundreds of pages long, and are likely to be mostly fiction.
That's the kind of stuff that would get you banned if you spoke of Jews or blacks, but kulaks are fair game, right?
And people wonder why I think it's ok to kill leftists, they never regreted dekulakization, they never said the liquidation of kulaks as a class was a terrible idea, they would do it again and in the modern age they would do it against people they identify as "kulaks" such as Southern whites in the U.S. and hindu nationalists in India.
In this context, it's way better to kill a few thousand leftists than to let them take power and unleash their desires that kill millions.
>That's the kind of stuff that would get you banned if you spoke of Jews or blacks, but kulaks are fair game, right?
That's correct. They were counter-revolutionaries and deserved to die. Just like the Romanovs.
That's more of a problem with Classicists and Near Eastern studies in general, though. Those areas of study are mostly dominated by people who aren't very critical, and do little more than parrot things that were decided on over a hundred years ago. That's not the case with everyone, and there is still evidence backing up most of what they so, but it's a frustrating field to try to do research in because it often has more to do with art history (description and typing) than actual archaeology.
To expand on OP's question, though, there are actually a lot of consensuses that are in the process of being discarded or reworked. The historicity of the Bible and the settling of North America are good examples. I have no idea how aware the general public is of this stuff, but in archaeological circles, lots of stuff is being changed, or at least talked about critically.
Academic consensus is that the use of God speaking as "we" in Genesis at the creation of man, the tower of babel, and one other incident I know is there but I'm blanking on is that it's evidence of henotheist or polytheist beliefs among the ancient Hebrews, which gradually got replaced as Monotheism took hold.
Except every time, it's always
>God said, "Let us do X"
plural, immediately followed by
>And then God did X
Singular. And if it is just some sort of edit job that missed a few points, it's a remarkably firm pattern for that to be so. Granted, I'm not 100% sure what to make of it, but I don't think the "botched edit of former henotheists" thing quite holds up.
>I don't think the "botched edit of former henotheists" thing quite holds up.
It does, though. There's plenty of evidence that monotheism didn't become a feature of Judaism until fairly late.
1) I'm not necessarily denying former henotheism, merely the source of the formation of said passages in Genesis.
2) you get a lot of circular reasoning in the subject. The passages "clearly" are evidence of former polytheist beliefs, which we know about because we see the plural gods saying "we".
Fair enough, but there's a lot of evidence of former polytheism besides some awkward phrasing. In most scholarly literature on the subject, it's not even brought up most of the time, because it doesn't need to be and it's a pretty weak argument (thanks to editing and redacting). There's plenty of material and other cultural evidence that shows Judaism didn't develop into a monotheistic religion until as late as the babylonian captivity, and the phrasing doesn't really change anything about that.
Go read "body disposal at auschwitz". Death tolls are well within capability of the incinerators to keep up with, and a lot of the early Soviet overestimation a of death tolls were based on looking at cremation capacity and assuming that many people were killed.
This used to bother me, so I ended up doing my own research and calculating the capacity of the krema. One thing I didn't realize is that there were several large crematoriums filled with individual furnaces, and each furnace with its own 'slots'. I had thought it was just one building with a couple ovens.
The big piece of misinformation, it turned out, was the time it takes to cremate a human body. People have tried to say that the figures are impossible, since modern cremation takes ~2 hours... to fully reduce the body, shatter the thicker bones and bleach them, so the ashes are presentable to next of kin. To simply incinerate the squishy bits, it would have only taken something like 1/2 hour for the krema furnaces.
In fact, the (modern) number of cremations fits quite well with the facts. At Auschwitz, the maximum efficiency (by modern and Nazi calculations) would have given a figure in the range of 1.7 million cremations, and the claimed number is somewhere between 1 and 1.5 million.
Anyway, just look it up on your own – there's plenty of resources listing different claims, and plenty others giving responses. Find out the number of furnaces, when they were in operation, what their maintenance and capacities were, &c. and run the numbers for yourself. Always make sure to get as many sources and figures as you can, so you can cross-reference, and follow every line of inquiry to its conclusion. Skepticism is good, but only if it's inquisitive and well-informed.
I assumed there's plenty in eastern Europe. There are two main sites with ~60000 bodies in my country (Latvia), according to nazi paperwork. I don't know if they were actually excavated, tho there are memorials.
I'm not sure - and think that, at the end of the day, no one probably is - the exact number of exterminations carried out at the Nazi concentration camps.
But regardless of the exact number (whether it was in the hundreds of thousands or millions or whatever), it still happened - there's more than enough documentation and infrastructure and mass graves to prove that. So how do Hitler defenders get around that then, exactly? "Oh, it wasn't so bad, they only rounded up and killed like 30 thousand civilians, not 6 million". Is that the party line? Because that's still a genocide and would appear very difficult to defend.
>Civilization only goes back 10,000 years
I think there were probably pockets of civilization far before that and that those cities were copied into what we know today as some of the first civilizations
Because the allies killed everyone in the camps with strategic bombing, duh. Otherwise, you have to conclude that the internment of Japanese Americans was also genocidal.
[spoiler] Please note I'm being sarcastic, I'm just giving a summary of the /pol/ line.[/spoiler]
The thing is, civilizations need food.
A shitload of it. Enough food that people can concentrate on doing things other than gathering food.
I'm actually willing to buy the argument that humans didn't develop agriculture as a primary form of subsistence until the end of the Ice Age and the Natufian sites about 12,000 years ago.
The latter poster is right, agriculture is the beating heart of large scale civilization. Of course it's possible that agriculture was developed and summarily "lost" at some point, but that seems unlikely. Learning that you can plant things and the ground and make food appear was the real spark of civilization that people instead usually ascribe to "discovering fire" or whatever.
Something happened in the last few millennia where H. sapiens underwent a dramatic, total cultural shift. No one can ever really know why though.
>No one can ever really know why though.
>people realize that they can support far, far more people per acre with domesticated crops and animals than with hunting and gathering
>groups that do this eventually come to dominate those that don't
Doesn't seem too complicated, to be frank.
Not that anon, but, assuming he's talking about actual archaeology and not some weird Atlantis shit, he's right. Although, he wouldn't have needed to "convince" anyone (depending on what class he was in), since most archaeologists agree that humans settled North America long before people used to think.
The previous hypotheses, and what still seems to be popular among the general public and in outdated museums and stuff, was that people came over 12-10,000 years ago and that Clovis cultures were the earliest settlers. Several finds (Monte Verde being the most famous) have basically disproven this, and for about twenty years archaeologists have more or less accepted that people came to NA far earlier. The current hypothesis that makes the most sense involves people coming over in boats while following sea mammals and kelp beds, possibly around 20-25,000 years ago.
And yes, the Vikings were the first Europeans to come over.
Depending on the area, hunter-gatherer lifestyles can actually support a substantial population density. For example, the area of Lake Tulare (now drained for agriculture) in California was able to support a density comparable to that of the Aztec city-states, albeit on a much smaller scale. Of course, that degree of natural abundance is rare in the world, and the native peoples surrounding the lake never developed their own 'civilization' as-such.
Based on examples like that, though, I wouldn't be surprised if there were some isolated cases of pre-agricultural peoples developing their own ephemeral mini-civs in such fertile areas. Of course, they would be quite short-lived, as without agriculture any settled population would quickly reach crisis size. It's certainly possible, though, especially when you consider coastal peoples like the Haida, who substituted fertile fisheries for agriculture and were able to live sedentary lifestyles, even developing basic metallurgy. Not quite the density to urbanize, but it does give a tantalizing hint of what could have been.
Well, the definition of a civilization is a place with urbanization, a central government, and writing.
I don't think that happens until you reach a certain critical mass.
As for sedentary human populations before agriculture, I think that's confirmed.
Look at Gobleke Tepe.
They didn't write things down.
So not a civilization, but still pretty cool, and probably not uncommon.
I wonder if we'll eventually find similar complexes from even earlier in human history, say 50,000 years ago.
Desu, if Classics wasn't a field with the problems I mentioned here: >>664225 it would already be seen like that. Archaeology as a field has grown a lot over the past 40 or 50 years, and classicists have largely been ignoring the advances other archaeologists have made in viewing cultural change. This is probably because a lot of classicists are actually historians and not really archaeologists, and because the ones that are archaeologists tend to put themselves in a weird bubble that separates them from the rest of the field. This is starting to change, but it's still basically the norm.
>Or modern 'biographies' of an ancient figure which are hundreds of pages long, and are likely to be mostly fiction.
This is the only thing in pop-history that really annoys me. Despite miniscule evidence for most historical figures' personal lives, many authors come out with "I feel like I really know this person" based on an impression they've invented in their head.
The area around the Bering Strait (norther Asia/Siberia).
And no, he wouldn't be right, because it wouldn't have happened on large ships. It would have been more like smaller-scale hunting expeditions in small boats, like how Inuits hunted. And that's entirely reasonable, since groups of Inuit hunters were recorded to have made similar-scale migrations.
Something about how he showed no emotion when he was getting sworn in while standing right next to the first lady just seems odd. And he was known for stuffing ballot boxes to get a head politically
Yeah, I wouldn't be surprised at very early sedentary populations, since the evidence is all pointing to the first permanent settlements surviving on hunting and gathering. So there's much less of a limiting factor on settlements than was previously thought.
Forgot to add, there is probably a wealth of evidence in the middle east that wont be uncovered any time soon due to war and local governments being poor or hating history (god damn Saudi Arabia).
Well, centralization is something that goes hand-in-hand with population density and urbanization, so really the question is what that critical mass would be. I suppose it could be argued that centralization could exist prior to that, even, depending on how you view tribal arrangements. At the very least, we see division of labor arising in successful hunter-gatherer cultures, so it's not too far fetched.
As for writing, that's not really a requirement, they just need a commonly understood (not necessarily by society as a whole) form of symbolic communication. Not necessarily even symbolic of language itself, otherwise quipu wouldn't be counted and I suppose the Inca wouldn't qualify for civilization status – although I would think that level of abstraction would be less common than ideographic forms.
That having been said, symbolic communication is known to predate agriculture. The question then would be whether the proto-civ would have access to that precedent (very likely), and whether it would actually be utilized by the state (from history, very unlikely).
> It would have been more like smaller-scale hunting expeditions in small boats
So that means many groups of people over a large period of time, chose to trek trough siberia and alaska. Why would anyone do that?
>So that means many groups of people over a large period of time
>Why would anyone do that?
Why would anyone move anywhere? Humans have settled almost everywhere on this planet, it was just another place for people to go. In this case, they were likely following the movements of kelp beds and sea mammals.
It's not exactly something that's academically agreed upon and I doubt, more that something academically agreed upon and then the ramifications are ignored.
Pre-modern medicine, death in childbirth was enormously common. The best work I've seen on the subject is Barbera Hainswalt's, and she demonstrates that for a lot of European history, a woman had roughly a 1 in 5 chance of dying within the month after giving birth. That's not per woman, that's per pregnancy.
And it's just shocking how little attention it gets. I mean, we're talking radical shaping of how societies functioned here, with a virtual certainty that a fertile woman would die much, much younger than the men in the same society. It means that by the time you hit the age bracket of 30-40, you're probably talking about a demographic that's 85%+ men.
And for whatever reason, people ignore it. It's baffling.
Its just a transparency thing, sure killing one person isn't better than killing ten but stating something as a fact then covering your ears and shutting out the world when people ask for evidence is retarded, the truth is always important
>didn't write things down
but how do we know this? if they bad written in parchment it would not have survived until the present, and even if they had used tablets what are the odds of them surviving?
can't we just admit that we don't know shit? too much conjecture and speculation being taken as fact
We have no idea how, but people made it to Australia (sahul) with a necessary ocean crossing ~50,000 years ago.
Right now there's two big camps in Islamic studies, the traditionalists and the revisionists. One group accepts the 9th and 10th century sources that reference 7th and 8th century texts and oral history mostly as is. The other suggests the discrepancies between these and earlier non-Muslim sources as well as heterodox traditions surviving in parallel with the traditional account means there's plenty of doubt in the currently accepted timeline of Islam's early history and development.
>the point is to admit that the oswald hypothesis is dumb,
It's literally the only one that makes sense. Oswald was exactly the kind of person who would have done it (unstable communist sympathizer who was mad he wasn't famous for defecting back to the US, and had talked about - and tried to - assassinate people before), and it happened exactly the way it should have if Oswald did it (gunshots from behind).
The only reason people think he didn't is because of all the misinformation that's been spread in the past 50 years. If you strip away all the crazy shit and look at the actual facts, it's obvious it was Oswald.
People tend to focus on big events rather than the small changes in ordinary people's lives that shape societies.
I'd add infant mortality to that, I can't imagine how differently you'd raise your children if you knew half of them would die before 5.
Actual scientists will tell you they don't know shit.
However, if we have no evidence for something, there's no reason to take it into account.
If we find human writings from before 3000 BC, history will take that into account.
I personally doubt it, just because the societies of Egypt, Mesopotamia, India, and China all seem to have developed writing, agriculture and cities around the same time, which leads me to believe that climatic factors and the domestication of animals were a necessary precondition.
The more primary sources I read, the more I'm convinced most modern history is just made up. Educated guesses certainly, but still just made up.
Example. The battle of Blore Heath. There's maps showing the landscape and the movements of the troops. How they were forming barricades at a stream and fighting in the water.
Then you read the one actual source for the battle and it say "There was a battle. 5000 men were there. Lord Audley was killed." No other description provided.
but how do we know they "developed" it. the reason people say that is because we haven't found earlier examples
these historians literally can't into logic and induction. this is why philosophical training should be compulsory for every science
Well, we can't make historical assumptions based on evidence we don't have.
To the best of my knowledge, there are no societies without agriculture that have invented writing.
Agriculture results in domesticated species, which we have no evidence for before the Agricultural Revolution.
It'd probably change genetics, the way that we can tell the Mount Toba eruption caused a bottleneck.
You'd also expect things like ceremonial architecture, megaliths, and a crapload of pottery shards.
We can't tell for sure that it never happened, but we can safely state that there is no evidence, which means the same thing in practical terms.
>there is no evidence, which means the same thing in practical terms
>we can't make historical assumptions based on evidence we don't have.
uhhh logically the only correct response to the evidence we have is the humble one of: we don't know when writing was invented. period. but everyone wants to have an answer at any cost.
History tends to work on "our best evidence suggests that the first humans to invent writing did it at this place and this time."
You can rarely give certainty, but you can state what the current evidence points towards.
this is why historians need some serious philosophical training
This is what (as a modernist historian with primarily western interests) I never understood about people applying for grad school to study antiquity.
What we have is essentially fiction, and we arrived to it by sapping what little evidence there is COMPLETELY DRY.
Why bother any more?
Rafts. You don't need a civilisation to build a fucking raft or even a boat, modern hunter-gatherers do it all the time.
>Of course it's possible that agriculture was developed and summarily "lost" at some point, but that seems unlikely
it seems very unlikely, given that we can detect agriculture archaeologically. When agriculture began there was a visible evolution in plants, particularly cereals.
>Agriculture results in domesticated species
Human-animal relations are far more complex than that. For starters, pastoralism almost certainly predates agriculture by a long way, and secondly we can't really identify domesticates archaeologically until quite some time after the fact.
i think it's very naive for americans to think oswald killed kennedy. it's not a "conspiracy" to say that it wasn't oswald, it's common sense. americans make such a big deal out of it. political assasinations and coups are pretty standard political events, they happen regularly and all over the world, but somehow america is the exception
"this is america, we don't have coups here". yeah, bullshit
When was there ever a coup in the U.S.A.? You need to do more than just assassinate the chief executive, you need to replace the government by force, and I must have missed something important in my American history classes if that one slipped by.
That's not what a "coup" is. A coup is a sudden seizure of the state apparatus by a party who is not legally empowered to do so. You replace the whole government, not just an executive. An American coup would necessitate the overthrow or removal of Congress, not the president, and would very likely remove the entire constitution, since, you know, under it the new government would have no legitimacy.
It's the problem of trying to create a utopia desu. What do you do with the imperfect people, the ones who disagree with you, the ones who can't meet the standards of your perfect society?
I automatically distrust someone who says they can make the world a better place with their big revolutionary ideas. It's been done before. Just focus on making your life and that of your friends and family better.
History would never exist as a discipline, research would not be done and you would never arrive to the point where you know the something.
But people would still make made up stories and sell them as things that actually happened, without even caring about what the evidence suggests. And that would be history instead of what you seem to dislike.
Classical archaeologist here.
Any historian worth their salt will mention that we don't really know exactly what happened in the past. Most of them assume you already know that and don't bother with the highschoolesque disclaimer.
We just try to have as many sources correlate and paint the bigger picture. See Pompeii for instance.
I blame the stupidity on desperate anthropologists and edutainment.
>So, Jewish religious law mandates that meat from animals sacrificed be disposed of if it's not eaten or burned past a certain time.
>The Mishnah records that the remains were customarily fed to dogs.
To be honest, it's vague as if they were just tossing the scraps to stray animals or if there were actual dogs kept around for the purpose, but I insist in my view that there were really fat, lazy dogs kept around for the purpose despite there really being no evidence for it.
I'm not sure how serious you are, or how much you actually know about the topic, but several metaanalyses of the topic have been performed over the last 10 years, basically to examine what the data shows (which is that there is an extreme climatic shift) as well as what conclusions have been drawn by the authors of studies from the data (that the climate is changing, and human activity is the primary cause). I mean, you guys are mostly social scientists and historians, but my background is actually in weather and climate.