Share on Google Plus Share on Twitter Share on Facebook 56 Share on LinkedIn Share on PInterest Share on Fark! Share on Reddit 56 Share on StumbleUpon Tell A Friend (112 Shares)  

Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites   No comments

Invisible Success, Civilizations that Die or Quit and Memes We Live By; Transcript of an Interview with Daniel Quinn

By       (Page 7 of 9 pages) Become a premium member to see this article and all articles as one long page.     Permalink

 Add to My Group(s)

Rate It | View Ratings H2'ed 5/3/13
Author 87


Daniel Quinn   That's alright.  The villages became towns, the towns became cities, cities became city-tates, then nations, then empires.  And that brings us to the present, where we came to the New World, the world that was new to us about five hundred [500] years ago.  Moving in from the Eastern seaboard, we found traces of a civilization: mounds.  But not a very impressive civilization, and the mound builders were nowhere, they were gone.  And moving still further in, and moving South into Central America, they found something that completely surprised them, which were the Incas and the Aztecs, who had civilizations that were actually richer than anything they'd ever seen -- but not powerful.  And the Spanish overran them, took down their power structure, and replaced it with their own; wiped them out. 


As it went on, they found traces of extinct civilizations: the Maya, the Olmec, and the city state of Teotihuacan.   What they saw there was a puzzle, because our civilization has lived for ten thousand years, if you start from the beginning, the villages; and these civilizations went on for a few thousand years, and then were, apparently, abandoned.  Why in the world would such a thing happen?  They might have been invaded and conquered; but when the Romans invaded Britain, they didn't leave it behind as a ruin, they just took over Britain for a time.  And when the Spaniards came to the Incas and the Aztecs, they didn't leave those behind as ruined civilizations. 


So what happened to these civilizations, the Maya and the Olmec and the people of Teotihuacan?  It was a puzzle that remained a puzzle for hundreds of years.  It still is a puzzle for many.  They came up with all sorts of theories to explain it.  [searching through notes]


There's one theory that explains the Olmec abandonment: "Environmental changes that might have rendered the region unsuited for large scale."  There's another: "Changes triggered by tectonic upheavals." Another: "The silting up of rivers."  Another: "Volcanic eruptions "


Here are some theories to explain the Mayan abandonment:  overpopulation, foreign invasion (by whom, no one has any idea, not even a theory), peasant revolt, environmental distasters, epidemic disease, climate change, a drought,


The theories for the city Teotihuacan: droughts again, nameless (again) unknown invaders, maybe from outer space, /


Rob Kall: (laughs)


Daniel Quinn - who sacked and burned the structures and dwellings associated primarily with class, the elite class.  Some people think that this suggests an internal uprising that forced an executive decision to quit.  But think: our civilization suffered all of this, whole regions rendered unfit for farming, countless earthquakes, countless rivers silting up, countless volcanic eruptions, countless peasant revolts, droughts, epidemics.  But we're still here! 

Next Page  1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6  |  7  |  8  |  9


Rate It | View Ratings

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon Share Author on Social Media   Go To Commenting

The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

How To Create An Evil Character-- Sound Familiar? (2844 views)

Archetypal, Mythic Strong Women and Patriarchy -- A Conversation with Jean Shinoda Bolen, MD-- Transcript (2071 views)

Writing Stories to Change the World (2055 views)

Transcript: Arlene Goldbard, author, The Culture of Possibility: Art, Artists & The Future (1997 views)

Mallary Jean Tenore-- Writing With Hope-- Restorative Narratives (1952 views)

John Taylor Gatto, author Dumbing Us Down; Interview Transcript, Part 1 (1843 views)

Total Views: 12762

To View Comments or Join the Conversation: