Civilizations and power

Essay by laxinCollege, UndergraduateA-, March 2004

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How a civilization gets power and how they use it can determine how prosperous they are. Looking back in western civilization we find five major civilizations: Mesopotamian, Jewish, Egyptian, Greek, and Roman. Mesopotamians used a primitive democracy to control their society. Jewish people followed a single god that came in the human form to them. Egyptians were ruled by pharaohs, which were believed to be gods. Greeks believed in human talent, and those humans controlled what happened in their society. The Romans were governed by men who at first were elected by the people, but eventually the leaders gained power through blood. Each civilization became more advanced as time went on, and the first were the Mesopotamians.

In Mesopotamia the people were governed by a counsel of elders, and had an elected king in times of war (Western Civilization pg 15). This worked well for a long time until the temporary king took over all the powers.

Having a counsel of people deciding who gets what, when, and how much, makes life easier. It makes life easier because people didn't have to worry about having one leader that would give everything to the more "important" people, they could count on if one counsel member wanted to do something absurd, the other counsel members would make sure it couldn't be put on the people. It could be thought of a system of checks and balances, something that has been put to use in the U.S. government. Even though this was working quite well, there was a turning point when the temporarily elected king took over all the power. This period was worse for the majority of people, because they wouldn't be considered in the king's thoughts. Lower class people slowly dropped lower on the ladder, almost to nothing. However there...