Chapter 5 outline (World Civilizaitons).

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Alexander Zubarev

Outline for Chapter V

This chapter focuses partly on importance of nomadic tribes, the decline of all classical civilizations, and the rise of 3 religions, 2 of them major world religions.

Nomads have connected major empires and encouraged trade almost all throughout human history. The silk routes were one of the most famous such trade routes. They connected Western China, Mediterranean, and even Western Europe. Many civilizations had to go far from their borders to protect such trade routes from hostile nomads. Nomads played a crucial role in spreading trade until the Industrial Revolution offered railroads and steamboats--a more effective, efficient, and faster way to trade. Besides trade, nomads spread a lot of technological achievements and inventions. For instance, nomads spread the skill of making paper from China to Arabic world, either intentionally or unintentionally. Finally, nomads spread the military tactics and techniques. Hit-and-run tactics, or guerilla warfare is one example of it.

Not only "civilized" countries adapted some of the tactics the nomads used, but also developed tactics against them (hence, the Great Wall of China was constructed). They also spread crops and, occasionally, diseases.

Japanese were developing in considerable isolation, and in a peculiar way. Japanese somehow skipped the stage of using copper and bronze, instead going on from Stone Age to Iron Age. Thanks to this leap, Northern Europe, as well as some Slavic tribes was dangerously behind Japan.

In the Americas, meanwhile, things were developing ever so slowly. Potato was already developed, but corn was just developing.

By 100 A.D, the Han dynasty started to deteriorate. Confucianism started to become weak, and bureaucrats became more criminal. As Confucianism grew weak, Taoists took advantage, and Daoism became the dominant religion. Epidemics and disease also took hold. Buddhism was another religion that took advantage in the...