Violence, Terrorism, and the Interactions between Cultures Essay

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Violence, Terrorism, and the Interactions between Cultures When humans from different cultures interact, the result is often bloodshed, domination and disease. Also, without exception, the exchange of ideas gradually occurs. All of these factors have shaped the course of history. While much of the spread of disease has been reduced since the Black Death, much bloodshed still comes from the interaction of cultures, possibly from physical contact without intellectual or rational interaction and understanding. Interaction itself is necessary and does result in good as well, especially in terms of technological advancements. The spread of disease is possibly one of the most dramatic results of interactions between cultures. The…show more content…
(Diamond) Millions of Romans died during the fifteen-year epidemic. In the fourteenth century, the Black Death (bubonic plague) traveled from Central Asia to Europe and killed a third of Europe’s population. It continued to reappear periodically for the next 300 years. The Great Plague hit London in 1665 and was killing about 6,000 people a week by September. (Ponting) Close quarters and a lack of good sanitation helped perpetuate the problem. While this logic seems sound, it is also true that we have limited knowledge of the history of meso-American peoples and the diseases they may have discovered. For example, the Mayans disappeared mysteriously, and disease has been suggested as the cause. What we do know is that when the Europeans interacted with the indigenous American peoples, the Americans had no immunity to the diseases the Europeans carried, while the Europeans’ health remained unaffected by the interaction. (Diamond) The result of the spread of European diseases was drastic. When Cortés tried to conquer the Aztecs in 1519, he barely managed to make his way back to the coast with the remaining third of his men. The second time he tried, smallpox had preceded him, resulting in the deaths of half of the Aztecs and some depressingly better luck for Cortés. The disease killed over 18 million of Mexico’s initial 20 million people by 1618. (Diamond)
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