Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Scientists Say Warfare Began After People Formed Villages
Seattle Times ^ | 9-16-2003 | Dan Vergano

Posted on 09/16/2003 5:33:47 PM PDT by blam

Scientists say warfare began after people formed villages

By Dan Vergano
Gannett News Service

From ancient Troy to today's Iraq, warfare forms the backdrop of human history. But anthropologists, archaeologists and other scholars tend to disagree on war's origins: Some see it as an ailment of civilization and others say it has deeper roots.

Two anthropologists from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, suggest that although people could have come into conflict before civilization, archaeological remains of burning homes, fleeing refugees and slain captives show simple raids steadily maturing into full-scale warfare as humans settled into villages and society became more stratified.

Their report appears in today's Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

In their study, Kent Flannery and Joyce Marcus examined the past 10,000 years of Mexico's Oaxaca (wah-HA-ka) Valley. Until Native American village life began there, even with corn's domestication around 5,400 years ago, no evidence of warfare emerges from the region.

But researchers find signs of dwellings burned in raids from 3,500 years ago, when settled life began.

Defensive palisades in the valley were rapidly followed by hieroglyphics depicting slain captives, fortresses and "the first skull rack," the researchers write. Dating of artifacts shows temples burned and captives taken in hieroglyphic descriptions, and a warrior elite was widespread throughout villages in the valley by 2,500 years ago.

"What is important is that the work has put radiocarbon dates on every stage in the evolution of war in Mexico from early village to empire," said Marcus.

Fighting did occur among simpler foraging societies before the settlement of villages, but it was sporadic and seldom led to full-scale warfare, said archaeologist Richard Blanton of Purdue University. "They could solve problems by simply getting up and leaving," he said.

But once they had invested the effort in constructing dwellings and other buildings, he added, "It was worth it to stand and fight."


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: anthropology; archaeology; began; civilization; ggg; godsgravesglyphs; history; homer; origins; people; scientists; trojans; troy; villages; warfare

1 posted on 09/16/2003 5:33:48 PM PDT by blam
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: blam
I always knew it was the Village People.
2 posted on 09/16/2003 5:34:36 PM PDT by xJones
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
It takes a village or two to fight a war.
3 posted on 09/16/2003 5:34:53 PM PDT by jwalsh07
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
It takes a village.
4 posted on 09/16/2003 5:35:01 PM PDT by Paul Atreides (Bringing you quality, non-unnecessarily-excerpted threads since 2002)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
In other words, the collective, not the individual, causes wars.

Remember that the next time some liberal whines about the greater good, it takes a village, etc.
5 posted on 09/16/2003 5:35:43 PM PDT by Behind Liberal Lines
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
Scientists also say that "something came from nothing" or words to that effect!
6 posted on 09/16/2003 5:35:50 PM PDT by Radix
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: xJones
In their study, Kent Flannery and Joyce Marcus examined the past 10,000 years of Mexico's Oaxaca (wah-HA-ka) Valley. Until Native American village life began there, even with corn's domestication around 5,400 years ago, no evidence of warfare emerges from the region.

But researchers find signs of dwellings burned in raids from 3,500 years ago, when settled life began.

Now all is left is to find a way to blame it on white people.

7 posted on 09/16/2003 5:36:44 PM PDT by Paul Atreides (Bringing you quality, non-unnecessarily-excerpted threads since 2002)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: blam

Burn the village! Then you don't need to raise the children.

Isn't this "statement" about like saying "When it rains, people will get wet!"? A chicken with the brain the size of a pea knows to walk under shelter.



8 posted on 09/16/2003 5:37:47 PM PDT by Malsua
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Malsua
The real stunner is that people died before the gun was invented.
9 posted on 09/16/2003 5:38:55 PM PDT by Paul Atreides (Bringing you quality, non-unnecessarily-excerpted threads since 2002)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: blam
The sad thing is that someone actually paid for a study to tell them this.

I mean I am no Anthropologist here but DUH PEOPLE !

Any amature student of human nature could have told them this.

Cheers,

knews hound
10 posted on 09/16/2003 5:39:21 PM PDT by knews_hound (Out of the NIC ,into the Router, out to the Cloud....Nothing but 'Net)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: vikingchick
And so began the 'tribal' mentality..... ;)
11 posted on 09/16/2003 5:41:52 PM PDT by BossLady
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
This is why I could never be a member of the academic elite. I simply don't have the cognitive sense to figure this out on my own. It's a good thing these superior beings study these things and come to these conclusions or I just wouldn't be able to function in this elite world of ours./sarc/
12 posted on 09/16/2003 5:45:22 PM PDT by TADSLOS (Right Wing Infidel since 1954)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Paul Atreides


>>The real stunner is that people died before the gun was invented. <<

NOOO! Really! I thought that people killed people. I never knew that guns had part in it.

13 posted on 09/16/2003 5:45:36 PM PDT by Malsua
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: blam
, no evidence of warfare emerges from the region. Of course none emerges: what if not building stricture could surviver to this day to indicate the warfare?

The very proposition does not seem to be bright: animals have warfare. This "theory" seems more of the Leftist mantra: no "stratificaton" (read: equality) --- no warfare. Peace on earth, now and forever.

14 posted on 09/16/2003 5:46:29 PM PDT by TopQuark
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Malsua
Amazing, huh? I guess the swords were actually invented to trim hedges around the huts/castles. Spears were for really big shishkabobs. And, knives were only used for shaving.
15 posted on 09/16/2003 5:47:13 PM PDT by Paul Atreides (Bringing you quality, non-unnecessarily-excerpted threads since 2002)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: BossLady

THIS HAS BEEN KNOWN FOR A LONG TIME TO BE THE TRUTH

yet it has been censored ever sinde in schools. It starts already by the fact that it would contradict

evolution theory

P.S. - Actually it is not correctly formulated. It should read "not sustainable villages".
16 posted on 09/16/2003 5:49:24 PM PDT by Truth666
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: Paul Atreides
The real stunner is that people died before the gun was invented.

the gun was a milestone in human conflict. For the first time a warrior could kill without ever exposing himself to death or injury, provided he had the bigest and newest gun.

Another thing that the gun played in a role in was equality of the masses. After Samuel Colt and others whom he had stolen ideas from made mass production of firearms feasible, the equation changed. Wayatt Earp could no longer get away with raping Miss Kitty, there were consequences. Even the little old lady from Pasadena was now endowed with balls.

So in a world of ICBM's the democraps still think the way to control people for their own detriment is by taking away the right of self defense. It ain't gonna work, the terrorists have WMD's now. That's progress.

17 posted on 09/16/2003 5:51:49 PM PDT by SSN558 (Be on the lookout for Black White-Supremacists)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: blam
...And, in totally unrelated news, rain began after the sky formed clouds!

I hope we didn't pay too much for this "scienist" to reach this particular conclusion(?)

18 posted on 09/16/2003 5:52:21 PM PDT by The Duke
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Malsua
When they had nothing but the assault rock, and there were no gun makers, who got blamed for the death? Let the elite figure that one out. It will probably keep them busy for another 20 years.
19 posted on 09/16/2003 5:57:46 PM PDT by Redwood71
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: Paul Atreides
No way!

Wait! It was probably global warming or second hand smoke that killed em, so, OK, I believe you.

Hb
20 posted on 09/16/2003 5:57:56 PM PDT by Hoverbug (whadda ya mean, "we don't get parachutes"!?!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: blam
Just what kind of archaeological evidence would you need for Cain killing Abel?

There isn't going to be much evidence for warfare before buildings were built.
21 posted on 09/16/2003 6:03:52 PM PDT by TruthConquers ("Who will liberate us from these tyrants of secularist tolerance?")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
In Mexico? That's impossible! EVERYONE knows that the people of the New World lived in peace and in harmony with the environment until the white man came.

I guess the arrival of whitey will now have to be re-dated for an arrival to match with the data.

Maybe this will allow the study of Kennewick Man.

22 posted on 09/16/2003 6:05:22 PM PDT by Tench_Coxe
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Tench_Coxe
"Maybe this will allow the study of Kennewick Man."

LOL, Kennewick Man has a spear point stuck in his hip bone. They say it must have oozed painfully for years.

23 posted on 09/16/2003 6:10:59 PM PDT by blam
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: Paul Atreides
White people invented the Village in order to lure sweet, nature loving, innocent minorities and women (and their cats)into living in the village, so that they could be enslaved, repressed and degraded.
24 posted on 09/16/2003 6:11:48 PM PDT by the gillman@blacklagoon.com
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: Paul Atreides
The tragedy of paelolithic warfare is that the village women and minorities were hardest hit.
25 posted on 09/16/2003 6:12:26 PM PDT by Will_Zurmacht
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: the gillman@blacklagoon.com
Thank you! I knew there'd be a way to bring it back around to The Man.
26 posted on 09/16/2003 6:19:40 PM PDT by Paul Atreides (Bringing you quality, non-unnecessarily-excerpted threads since 2002)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: the gillman@blacklagoon.com
One might well argue that the village was created for a defensive purpose first and foremost.

Why put up with the annoyance of close neighbors except for the safety of a group and the strong defense of advantageous terrain and walls?

If you were a generally peaceful band of agriculturalists, being overrun by hordes of agressive migrant hunters, banding together in a strong place would make sense.

Liberals consider aquiring and protecting assets and property to be the same as waging war.
27 posted on 09/16/2003 6:20:03 PM PDT by the gillman@blacklagoon.com
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: Will_Zurmacht
Don't forget about the irreparable harm to Mother Earth.
28 posted on 09/16/2003 6:20:12 PM PDT by Paul Atreides (Bringing you quality, non-unnecessarily-excerpted threads since 2002)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: Tench_Coxe
It is laughable just how bad our public education system is in regards to the history of the colonization of the New World.

The local indians in Mexico were the primary reason for the downfall of the Aztecs to the Spanish. Tired of being *eaten* by the Aztecs their neighbors banded together with the Spaniards under Cortez. So, everyone knows about the evvvvvvil handful of Spaniards that destroyed the Aztecs - but almost no one knows about the thousands of native allies that fought with them.

As for the Incas, being a brutal pagan, communist dictatorship - yep you heard that right - when the Spaniards under Pizarro destroyed their leadership in a quick strike, their whole society fell apart quickly, as other subjugated indians saw the Spaniards as a lesser threat. Of course, the Incas were just finishing a brutal civil war of their own.
29 posted on 09/16/2003 6:48:38 PM PDT by swilhelm73
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: blam
One wonders if it might ever occur to the leaned scholors who put this piece together that finding

"archaeological remains of burning homes, fleeing refugees and slain captives [that] show simple raids steadily maturing into full-scale warfare as humans settled into villages and society became more stratified."

Might be in large part due to the obscure theory that all those things are much easier to FIND in a village?

Clashes between roving bands who slept on different ground every couple of days might leave behind a bone or two, some wrought weaponry (a rock that fits) and maybe a defilade showing three hunters and their dog made a stand. I really doubt anyone built a hut in order to memorialize having theie bison carcass stolen.

30 posted on 09/16/2003 6:48:44 PM PDT by norton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: xJones

31 posted on 09/16/2003 6:53:29 PM PDT by Revolting cat! (I'm more ignorant than you, you wanna a bet?!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: blam
Tribal warfare is still going on in Africa, no need to speculate on what made villiages go to war when you can observe it first hand.
32 posted on 09/16/2003 6:53:56 PM PDT by Rome2000 (Vote McNader and Bustamante wins)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Paul Atreides
Now all is left is to find a way to blame it on white people.

Are you kidding? They're already halfway to blaming it all on George W. Bush!

33 posted on 09/16/2003 6:54:05 PM PDT by Siegfried (I ain't gonna work on Bill Gates' farm no more!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: blam
But wait... I thought.... IT TAKES A VILLIAGE!
34 posted on 09/16/2003 6:54:56 PM PDT by PISANO
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam

35 posted on 09/16/2003 6:56:00 PM PDT by Revolting cat! (I'm more ignorant than you, you wanna a bet?!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
The Villagers


36 posted on 09/16/2003 6:59:09 PM PDT by Revolting cat! (I'm more ignorant than you, you wanna a bet?!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: The Duke
Scientists Say Traffic Began After People Formed Cars

Billion-dollar study says research pays off but is underfunded

37 posted on 09/16/2003 7:01:13 PM PDT by Sender
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: swilhelm73
"The local indians in Mexico were the primary reason for the downfall of the Aztecs to the Spanish. Tired of being *eaten* by the Aztecs their neighbors banded together with the Spaniards under Cortez. "

Correct. That's what all the sacrifical killing was about...protein. There were no large mammals. The victims were thrown down those steps and were cut up and divided (by rank) amoungst the population to eat. The only domesticated animals they had were the turkey and the dog...and both those ate the same things that humans eat.
The large land animals of Africa, Europe and Asia can digest cellouse (we can't) so, we ate the animals without any loss of food to us. Now, the pig is a different story, they eat the same thing we do and that is why in some cultures/religions the pig is taboo.

Our word BBQ is really a Carib Indian word meaning: roasted human arm.

38 posted on 09/16/2003 7:05:45 PM PDT by blam
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: blam
I heard chimps also indulge in warfare but they don't have villages. Nomadic people also fight from time to time. You don't need villagers for a good rumble.
39 posted on 09/16/2003 7:10:02 PM PDT by Eternal_Bear
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: blam
Two anthropologists from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, suggest that although people could have come into conflict before civilization, archaeological remains of burning homes, fleeing refugees and slain captives show simple raids steadily maturing into full-scale warfare as humans settled into villages and society became more stratified.

Or maybe it has something to do with the fact that it's sort of difficult to burn down a cave. Lord save us from the intellectuals.....

40 posted on 09/16/2003 7:10:59 PM PDT by The Toad
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Eternal_Bear
"I heard chimps also indulge in warfare but they don't have villages. Nomadic people also fight from time to time. You don't need villagers for a good rumble."

I agree.

Anthropologist Marvin Harris (Bless his soul, he died this year at age 74), said that government began with agriculture, surplus food. The strongest got to distribute the surplus during a crisis/famine and they were also responsible for defending those who produced the surplus....original taxes.

41 posted on 09/16/2003 7:20:11 PM PDT by blam
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 39 | View Replies]

To: blam
My anthropology teacher said that warfare is something agricultural people do. It makes sense. A hunter-gatherer, while he may have a few favorite spots, can hunt or gather anywhere. If he's chased out of a particular area by others, he can still feed himself. A farmer, on the other hand, is tied to a piece of ground until his crops are in. If the farmer is chased off of his land, he'll starve. He has to defend a stationary asset in order to survive. This, understandably, makes the agriculturalist and his neighbors more prone to violence. They learn quickly that they may have to fight if they want to eat. And they eventually learn that warfare not only defends a field, it can get new ones.
42 posted on 09/16/2003 7:24:45 PM PDT by Redcloak (...from the occupied Republic of California.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Redcloak
A hunter-gatherer, while he may have a few favorite spots, can hunt or gather anywhere. If he's chased out of a particular area by others, he can still feed himself.

What you're saying is: There's always another hunting ground around the corner so why defend this one? That doesn't wash. Ancient hunting grounds weren't like McDonalds.

Most likely ancient hunting grounds were fiercely defended precisely because good ones were scarce and when hunters found one they fought to keep it.

Fighting over hunting grounds the way American Indians did, before the advent of the white man, is a more likely scenario, and probably the source of warfare itself. By the time agriculture came along warfare was most likely a well developed skill that farmers used to defend their land.
43 posted on 09/16/2003 8:38:35 PM PDT by Noachian (Liberalism belongs to the Fool, the Fraud, and the Vacuous.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 42 | View Replies]

To: Noachian
As evidence, my teacher pointed to the Indians of California. Even in pre-Columbian times California was (relatively speaking) densely populated; however, the tribes didn't fight over who got to hunt or gather in a particular area. California Indians, as a rule, rarely fought one another despite the crowded conditions.

There is, however, one notable exception to this peaceful picture: The Mojaves. They were one of the most aggressive and warlike tribes in North America. (They actually liked the Spanish since killing an armored man shooting a gun from horseback was more of a challenge. Much more fun that going after other Mojaves!) The Mojaves, in addition to being California's only warlike tribe, were the area's only agriculturalists. They fought to protect farmland along the Colorado River.
44 posted on 09/17/2003 9:19:38 AM PDT by Redcloak (...from the occupied Republic of California.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 43 | View Replies]

To: Behind Liberal Lines
In other words, the collective, not the individual, causes wars.

Actually, if these scientists are correct it would appear more likely that the recognition and defense of property rights causes wars.

45 posted on 09/17/2003 9:22:53 AM PDT by r9etb
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson