PDA

View Full Version : Europe's First Farmers Were Shockingly Violent



bicicleur
08-08-16, 10:24
http://www.pnas.org/content/112/36/11217.abstract

The Early Neolithic massacre-related mass grave of Schöneck-Kilianstädten presented here provides new data and insights for the ongoing discussions of prehistoric warfare in Central Europe. Although several characteristics gleaned from the analysis of the human skeletal remains support and strengthen previous hypotheses based on the few known massacre sites of this time, a pattern of intentional mutilation of violence victims identified here is of special significance. Adding another key site to the evidence for Early Neolithic warfare generally allows more robust and reliable reconstructions of the possible reasons for the extent and frequency of outbreaks of lethal mass violence and the general impact these events had on shaping the further development of the Central European Neolithic.

http://io9.gizmodo.com/europes-first-farmers-were-shockingly-violent-1724792763?utm_medium=sharefromsite&utm_source=io9_twitter

Indeed, this isn’t the first time that archaeologists have found something like this. In the 1980s, two similar Neolithic mass graves containing more than 100 bodies were uncovered in Germany and Austria. The new discovery strongly suggests that these clashes were not isolated or infrequent; during the Early Neolithic, it appears that farming communities went to war against rival farming communities.

So far the myth of violent HG and peacefull farmers.
If I understand correct all sites mentioned here were late LBK sites.
It does not mean all neolithic cultures were as violent as this.
But where there was overpopulation , I think not much was needed to spark war and violence.
War and violence in prehistory have been grocely understimated uptill now.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War_Before_Civilization

bicicleur
08-08-16, 10:47
Keeley says peaceful societies are an exception. About 90-95% of known societies engage in war. Those that did not are almost universally either isolated nomadic (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nomadic) groups (for whom flight is an option), groups of defeatedrefugees (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Refugees), or small enclaves under the protection of a larger modern state. The attrition rate of numerous close-quarter clashes, which characterize warfare (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War) in tribal (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tribal) warrior (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warrior) society, produces casualty rates of up to 60%, compared to 1% of the combatants as is typical in modern warfare. Despite the undeniable carnage and effectiveness of modern warfare, the evidence shows that tribal warfare is on average 20 times more deadly than 20th-century warfare, whether calculated as a percentage of total deaths due to war or as average deaths per year from war as a percentage of the total population.[citation needed (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Citation_needed)] "Had the same casualty rate been suffered by the population of the twentieth century," writes Nicholas Wade (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicholas_Wade), "its war deaths would have totaled two billion people."[1] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War_Before_Civilization#cite_note-1) In modern tribal societies, death rates from war are four to six times the highest death rates in 20th-century Germany or Russia.[2] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War_Before_Civilization#cite_note-2)

bicicleur
08-08-16, 11:01
another frequent cause of warfare were quarrels about women

The Life and Adventures of William Buckley.

“Soon after a messenger was sent to another tribe, with whom they had a quarrel about the women; the message was to say they would meet them at a certain place to fight it out. In about four days he returned, with information thatthe challenge was accepted; so we went there, I, of course, not then being conscious of what we were going for. On our arrival at the battle ground, about twenty miles distant, we found five different tribes all collected together, and ready for action. The fight commenced immediately, and it lasted about three hours, during which three women were killed – for strange to say, the females in these quarrels generally suffered the most.”

amongst Australian aboriginees, women fought too, and even more frequent than men
this is however an exception

Wanderlust
08-08-16, 14:01
The attrition rate of numerous close-quarter clashes, which characterize warfare in tribal warrior society, produces casualty rates of up to 60%, compared to 1% of the combatants as is typical in modern warfare.

I wonder what interesting yet evidently motivational notion of an afterlife was promised to these tribal warriors in order for them to risk such a strong likelihood of a gruesome and violent death. Chances are, it had to be good. lol



and at the end of the LBK aggression might have been aggravated further by patrilineally determined social inequality, especially with regard to access to coveted, high-quality farmland, food, and possibly prestige goods (9 (http://www.pnas.org/content/112/36/11217.full#ref-9), 13 (http://www.pnas.org/content/112/36/11217.full#ref-13), 14 (http://www.pnas.org/content/112/36/11217.full#ref-14), 76 (http://www.pnas.org/content/112/36/11217.full#ref-76), 84 (http://www.pnas.org/content/112/36/11217.full#ref-84)).

Humans being humans, it's reasonable to infer that greed, envy, covetousness, entitlement, fragile egos and skewed notions concerning respect would be the impetus behind a brutal, mob style hit like this...and interestingly enough, shins were literally broken lol:



The truly unique characteristic of the Kilianstädten mass grave, which previously was unknown for the LBK, is the clear pattern of targeted perimortem destruction of the distal segment of the lower limb. Chance damage can be dismissed; therefore an explanation must be sought in the violent events just before the deposition of the corpses (43). Specifically smashing the legs (tibiae and fibulae) certainly conveyed a message, which might be decoded with reference to other sites showing evidence of comparable levels of violence. In fact, torture and mutilation are often found as part of warfare (64, 68⇓–70), and instances in which the lower limbs have been targeted specifically are known both from archaeological sites (71, 72) and recent history (69, 73). Restricting movement, practically and symbolically, may be the main reason for primarily targeting the legs, violently stressing the futility of resistance and escape and adding to the terror of the victims if they were still alive and acting as a subjugated audience (72). Because of the general nature of the osteological evidence for perimortem trauma, it is impossible to determine precisely whether living victims were tortured or their corpses mutilated systematically, or both. However, these possibilities may be understood in a similar manner, because both may convey hatred and contempt in an ostentatious way, as does the usual apparently careless disposal of violence victims in a commingled mass grave in times of lethal conflict (64, 74).

Thousands of years later, we're still up to the same "primitive" hijinks, more or less. "Times change, people don't."

Promenade
08-08-16, 21:20
The article makes it sound like it was a pre meditated murder

"“The abundance of the identified perimortem fractures clearly indicates torture and/or mutilation of the victims,” write the researchers in their study."

"In close-quarter fighting, attackers made use of bow and arrows in an apparent ambush; animal bone arrowheads were found still attached to the buried bones."

"It’s difficult to discern a motive for this attack and others like it, but the researchers suspect that the systematic attempt to annihilate entire communities may have been the result of overpopulation in the area, or the product of poor crop yields, which may have been the result of natural climate change."

As for this particular case I disagree with their final analysis though, the population of Europe at the time must have been too sparse for this kind of fighting to be caused by overpopulation.They also only killed about 26 people so I dont know how much space that actually clears up. There was also no reason for them to torture and mutilate the victims. I'm guessing ancient massacres like these had their own complex political backgrounds like we have in modern times. I dont believe they simply wanted their resources and decided to ambush and kill them all and then torture them without there being some kind of prior dispute.

Angela
08-08-16, 22:16
Shall I count the times that this particular massacre has been posted on this Board to show the shocking violence among "Neolithic" people? Am I sensing a subtext here or do you just have very poor memories?

Surely we've said all that needs to be said, including the fact that violence is endemic to ALL human beings, but particularly the MALE of the species.

For most of you it's a very academic discussion, but not for me. I can tell you that men, who are usually the culprits, will kill for almost anything, and that applies to all races, colors, religions, and ethnic groups. Most recently, male adolescents will kill even for a pair of sneakers.

Oh, and, of course, one's mind would immediately go to a "mob style" hit. That's the closest cultural analogy to "systematic attempt to annihilate entire communities"?


I think not. Perhaps Germany in the Nazi Era would be more appropriate, or the Indo-Europeans, or perhaps the Vikings?

I know a little something about mob style hits, and I have absolutely no sympathy for the Mafia, but I have to break it to you that the Mafia has changed a great deal, where it even still survives. Anyway, unlike the Colombian gangs, or the Mexican gangs, or the Russian gangs headquartered in Brighton Beach, or even the Nazis and Vikings mentioned above, "hits" were almost always against other mob members, or perhaps men who had crossed them, not the wives and children of those men.

Wanderlust
09-08-16, 01:51
Shall I count the times that this particular massacre has been posted on this Board to show the shocking violence among "Neolithic" people? Am I sensing a subtext here or do you just have very poor memories?

Correct me if I'm wrong but are you suggesting that some might be trying to covertly tie violent Neolithic farmers with "hot-headed" Southern European/Mediterranean/Near Eastern stereotypes? Such a thing had never even occurred to me until I took a step back to consider the reasons for your now understandable testiness. lol

I can't speak for Bicicleur's (conscious and subconscious) motives (though I'd love to :wary2:) and this is an anthroforum after all (and all the negative connotations that may imply), but I certainly never made any such connection and furthermore, base, overly simplistic thinking, generalizing and stereotyping do not inform my modus operandi. I thought that would be clear by now.


Surely we've said all that needs to be said, including the fact that violence is endemic to ALL human beings, but particularly the MALE of the species.

For most of you it's a very academic discussion, but not for me. I can tell you that men, who are usually the culprits, will kill for almost anything, and that applies to all races, colors, religions, and ethnic groups. Most recently, male adolescents will kill even for a pair of sneakers.

Oh, and, of course, one's mind would immediately go to a "mob style" hit. That's the closest cultural analogy to "systematic attempt to annihilate entire communities"?


I think not. Perhaps Germany in the Nazi Era would be more appropriate, or the Indo-Europeans, or perhaps the Vikings?

I know a little something about mob style hits, and I have absolutely no sympathy for the Mafia, but I have to break it to you that the Mafia has changed a great deal, where it even still survives. Anyway, unlike the Colombian gangs, or the Mexican gangs, or the Russian gangs headquartered in Brighton Beach, or even the Nazis and Vikings mentioned above, "hits" were almost always against other mob members, or perhaps men who had crossed them, not the wives and children of those men.

1.) I agree that historically, men/patriarchy have been responsible for the vilest of crimes and human suffering.

2.) Though I was being tongue-in-cheek, I wasn't targeting or pinpointing the Italian Mafia, but the usually brutal and cutthroat mob (read: organized crime) mentality overall. But I now see how it might look like "Southern Europeans" were being picked on--wasn't my intention. That being said, for me, the fact that these LBK tribes seem to have been defined through kinship/genetic ties (read: families or gangs, especially considering warriors were a part of the community), and knowing the fragility and sensitivity of patriarchal masculinity, and the fact that the majority of those killed were men, and that the killing of women and children would certainly "personalize it," and the fact that shins were literally broken (C'MON! lol), "mob style hit" jumped out at me. But in my defence, I do fancy "crime dramas" and perhaps I've seen the Godfather (Sicilians), Goodfellas (Italians), Scarface (Cuban), American Gangsta (African-American), the Departed (Irish), City of God (Brazilians), Training Day (Mexicans) all one too many times. Trust me, I know that mobs come in all forms and I tend to think of them as diverse, regardless of the Italian Mafia being the defacto "big dog" within the overarching pop cultural zeitgeist.

3.) Vikings (allegedly) used children's skulls as chalices and gang raped Monks. :petrified: I don't romanticize them or downplay their atrocities at all.

Angela
09-08-16, 03:43
I respect Bicicleur's knowledge of genetics and ancient archaeology, and we even agree occasionally on politics. I accuse him of nothing. Undoubtedly he merely remembered the incident because we are discussing the Neolithic on several threads.

My momentary pique was because there's a history on these kinds of forums for some northern Europeans to romanticize the "hunter-gatherers" from whom they prefer to claim descent, rather than the Neolithic farmers whom they apparently thought were an alien, dark species sent down from a spaceship to ruin the paradise in which the hunter-gatherers lived. Of course, as we've subsequently discovered, but as I pointed out repeatedly even at the time, all humans were hunter gatherers before they became farmers, and everybody alive today save some scattered tribes in the Amazon or Africa is the descendant of farmers. Also, low and behold, those Anatolian farmers were lighter in pigmentation than the WHG, if not the EHG. Oh, and I forgot that the Yamnaya Indo-Europeans whom this type of person tended to idolize were proven to be half "Armenian" or Georgian like, and most of their "package" was borrowed from others. I expect many of them are in therapy, poor things.

In fact, I had just been reading some rants on another site where one of these people has apparently been so addled by the upsets in the world of genetics that he is in full manic mode, and claims that farming was invented in the Arctic, sea faring in the Atlantic, etc. etc. I must admit that I was rather stunned by that, and that no attempt was made to either correct him or direct him to a community mental health facility. We KNOW where agriculture developed in the world, both through archaeology and through plant genetics, likewise for animal husbandry, and it wasn't in the damn Arctic, for goodness sakes. The absurdity takes your breath away. Likewise we know the Yamnaya and Corded Ware etc. had to learn metallurgy from their neighbors, both in Old Europe and in Maykop. Have they never read how they lived? The only metal they had was what they traded for with "Old Europe". How could it be otherwise? One development leads to another. You don't go in one generation from hunting/gathering and living in a yurt to building a sophisticated metal working operation. It's absurd. The same applies to cities. When you don't have to move around because you have a stationary food supply, the population increases and settlements arise. When you have surplus food, you need to keep track of it, so writing and math. This is eighth grade world history, but it seems to be a surprise to the denizens of anthrofora. For years I've had to listen to people post nonsense supposedly based on David Anthony when it was obvious they'd either never read him or chose to distort what he said.

I'm tired of it and so I suppose I over-reacted. This is what happens, I guess, when our own site has been down and I read some posts on other Boards. I'm not on a mission to prove one group is superior to another, but I have no patience with people who either never learned any history or archaeology, or choose to ignore it to suit their agendas. Like it or lump it, certain things are reality. All these developments came from the Near East, and I also hate to break it to those trying to salvage some comfort from the fact that some of it (by no means all of it) came from Anatolia...ANATOLIA IS THE NEAR EAST, MIDDLE EAST, what have you. Ask the Turks in Germany if they're considered Middle Easterners.

As for your comment, I repeat, no matter how many mob or gangster movies you've seen, it's beyond me how anyone could read about an entire village being wiped out, men, women, and children, because of a dispute over food or land, and the first analogy that leaps to mind is a mob hit. The twentieth century provides a lot of very easy to remember similar scenarios, as with World War II and the Balkan Wars for a starter. Heck, if fiction is your thing, which most of these mob movies are, by the way, might I suggest there's more of a similarity even to something like the Walking Dead? However, far be it from me to tell you what should be uppermost in your mind.

LeBrok
09-08-16, 05:43
So far the myth of violent HG and peacefull farmers.

Oh, did someone hurt your hunter-gatherer feelings? I don't remember anyone claiming that on Eupedia. I think most people referred to IE as more violent than farmers. Which, knowing history, fits the mold. Nevertheless interesting article, thanks for posting.

bicicleur
09-08-16, 06:34
Perhaps Germany in the Nazi Era would be more appropriate, or the Indo-Europeans, or perhaps the Vikings?


Acording to Keely and Nicholas Wade these were not instances of exceptional violence.


Keeley says peaceful societies are an exception. About 90-95% of known societies engage in war. Those that did not are almost universally either isolated nomadic (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nomadic) groups (for whom flight is an option), groups of defeatedrefugees (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Refugees), or small enclaves under the protection of a larger modern state. The attrition rate of numerous close-quarter clashes, which characterize warfare (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War) in tribal (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tribal)warrior (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warrior) society, produces casualty rates of up to 60%, compared to 1% of the combatants as is typical in modern warfare. Despite the undeniable carnage and effectiveness of modern warfare, the evidence shows that tribal warfare is on average 20 times more deadly than 20th-century warfare, whether calculated as a percentage of total deaths due to war or as average deaths per year from war as a percentage of the total population.[citation needed (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Citation_needed)] "Had the same casualty rate been suffered by the population of the twentieth century," writes Nicholas Wade (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicholas_Wade), "its war deaths would have totaled two billion people."[1] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War_Before_Civilization#cite_note-1) In modern tribal societies, death rates from war are four to six times the highest death rates in 20th-century Germany or Russia.[2] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War_Before_Civilization#cite_note-2)

I don't know whether this is true, but certainly history has highlighted only few of the many instances of violence.
What is exceptional is 70 years of relative peace in most parts of the world since the end of WW II.
I think birth controll has a lot to do with that.

I agree that women often have a different approach in handling certain problems than men. And often with succes.
But I don't think that women in power are less violent than men.
This book claims however patriarchal societies are more violent : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demonic_Males
That may be true.

In the chapter "The Peaceful Ape," the authors contrast chimpanzee behaviors with those of the bonobo, presenting logical biological reasons for the more pacific (although also aggressive and antagonistic) behaviors of the latter.[2] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demonic_Males#cite_note-ridley-2) Reasons include a bonobo female social organization that doesn't tolerate male aggression, the invisibility of bonobo ovulation (in chimps, ovulation has both olfactory and genital swelling manifestations, leading to ferocious male competition for mating), and overall social organization, whereby male bonobos don't form alliances as male chimps do.

bicicleur
09-08-16, 09:13
this is another way to look at the evidence :

https://scontent-bru2-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/13895426_10153905246183348_2529088954846010141_n.j pg?oh=48c477d69f2a465beb773f7a3d8377eb&oe=58265D91

bicicleur
09-08-16, 14:36
Angela

I took the title from his article http://io9.gizmodo.com/europes-first-farmers-were-shockingly-violent-1724792763?utm_medium=sharefromsite&utm_source=io9%20_twitter
which is not incorrect, but it is sensationalistic.

This is not the only site with proof of violence in late LBK, there are several and violence was probably widespread amongst late LBK.
Natufians showed a few signs of violence, but SW Asia neolithic showed very little.
Then as I allready told before, the Semitic E-M123 who descend from Levant neolithic were very violent again, probably more violent than IE.
They include the savage Amorites and the cruel and ruthless Assyrians.

Other instances of violent neolithic cultures are the Aztecs and the Chinese Longshan.

I agree though, in general neolithic cultures probably were less violent than HG, pastoral or bronze age cultures.
But I guess overpopulation or deteriorating climate can easily trigger wars among neolithic people too.
It may have been the trigger for the Semitic expansion or for late LBK violence.
And I don't think that 'Old Europe' was as peacefull and harmonious as Marija Gimbutas wanted us to believe.

War and violence have allways been all around the world. I know you agree on that.

Angela
09-08-16, 15:56
Angela

I took the title from his article http://io9.gizmodo.com/europes-first-farmers-were-shockingly-violent-1724792763?utm_medium=sharefromsite&utm_source=io9%20_twitter
which is not incorrect, but it is sensationalistic.

This is not the only site with proof of violence in late LBK, there are several and violence was probably widespread amongst late LBK.
Natufians showed a few signs of violence, but SW Asia neolithic showed very little.
Then as I allready told before, the Semitic E-M123 who descend from Levant neolithic were very violent again, probably more violent than IE.
They include the savage Amorites and the cruel and ruthless Assyrians.

Other instances of violent neolithic cultures are the Aztecs and the Chinese Longshan.

I agree though, in general neolithic cultures probably were less violent than HG, pastoral or bronze age cultures.
But I guess overpopulation or deteriorating climate can easily trigger wars among neolithic people too.
It may have been the trigger for the Semitic expansion or for late LBK violence.
And I don't think that 'Old Europe' was as peacefull and harmonious as Marija Gimbutas wanted us to believe.

War and violence have allways been all around the world. I know you agree on that.


I agree that women often have a different approach in handling certain problems than men. And often with succes.
But I don't think that women in power are less violent than men.
This book claims however patriarchal societies are more violent :https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demonic_Males
That may be true.

In the chapter "The Peaceful Ape," the authors contrast chimpanzee behaviors with those of the bonobo, presenting logical biological reasons for the more pacific (although also aggressive and antagonistic) behaviors of the latter.[2] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demonic_Males#cite_note-ridley-2) Reasons include a bonobo female social organization that doesn't tolerate male aggression, the invisibility of bonobo ovulation (in chimps, ovulation has both olfactory and genital swelling manifestations, leading to ferocious male competition for mating), and overall social organization, whereby male bonobos don't form alliances as male chimps do.

I'm in total agreement with all of this.

I have a deep, dark, confession, however. When I was in university I was a bit of a card-carrying Gimbutas devotee. My only excuse is that it was part of the zeitgeist, I guess you could say, of that time and place. I since tore it up. :)

I never went so far as to get into all that New Age mother goddess nonsense. Nor did I think even then that all the evils of the world are the result of patriarchy, and I never was in sympathy with the Betty Friedan or Gloria Steinem types. I'm actually appalled by the kind of political feminism that reigns supreme on college campuses today and throttles free speech.

Still, nothing in my experience or my readings contradicts the idea that women are, in general, less violent than men. Most of the time, in fact, they're led into violence by the men in their lives.

All of this has something to do with how I feel about same gender education for girls and boys. In general I greatly favor it for girls, but I don't think it's all that healthy for boys. My impression is that the presence of girls may distract them, but it also tamps down all that testosterone fueled aggression.

Wanderlust
10-08-16, 00:16
As for your comment, I repeat, no matter how many mob or gangster movies you've seen, it's beyond me how anyone could read about an entire village being wiped out, men, women, and children, because of a dispute over food or land, and the first analogy that leaps to mind is a mob hit. The twentieth century provides a lot of very easy to remember similar scenarios, as with World War II and the Balkan Wars for a starter. Heck, if fiction is your thing, which most of these mob movies are, by the way, might I suggest there's more of a similarity even to something like the Walking Dead? However, far be it from me to tell you what should be uppermost in your mind.

It shouldn't be "beyond" you because you aren't a dumb person; it's only "beyond" you if you're intent on not understanding or misunderstanding. The smug implication seems to be that my point of view is somehow far fetched and/or illogical, and I'm many things, but illogical is never one of them.

Therefore, I'll explain myself again in further detail. I don't know if this is a semantics problem or what but I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and pretend that it is.

We are discussing LBK tribes, correct? Here is the definition of a tribe: a social division in a traditional society consisting of families or communities linked by social, economic, religious, or blood ties, with a common culture and dialect, typically having a recognized leader.

Oftentimes used interchangeably with the word tribe is the word band, which actually functions as a subgroup within a tribe. A band is a group of people who have a common interest or purpose, and guess what? Sometimes that purpose is marauding, plundering and slaughtering eg. a band of rebels, a band of thugs, a band of renegades, warbands, etc.... Now look up synonyms for the word band and you will find mob and gang, both of which usually involve organized bodies of crime that possess a complex and ruthless behavioral code. And within a modern context, the "marauding, plundering--thieving, looting, raping--and murdering" done by prehistoric warbands found amongst the LBK tribes constitute criminal acts. For the sake of my argument, warbands = mobs = gangs.

Again, a tribe consists of families or communities linked by social, economic, religious, or blood ties. And we know that within Prehistoric tribes like the LBK, not only did a family live and coexist side by side with a warband (read: a mob and gang), but the warband was usually comprised of family members, as well as others they shared some sort of social bond and proximity to! The Mafia, a form of mob, is a "crime family," is it not? Don't mobs have "turf wars" with other mobs over access to goods and resources, whether limited, "prestige" or otherwise? Don't these conflicts usually involve ruthless, brutal, "primitive" behavior like torture and "breaking shins?" Don't continued tensions, frictions and conflicts sometimes escalate in sphere and brutality? And by sphere, I mean that conflicts usually settled between mobsters (read: warriors) can sometimes spill out and directly affect their mates and children by way of slaughter.


When these likely missing individuals are taken into account, the overall sizes of the groups at Talheim and Kilianstädten would have been very similar as well, probably suggesting local communities of 30–40 people.



Particular LBK groups were singled out for as yet unknown reasons, attacked with brute force, and annihilated by others, probably close neighbors and very likely other LBK groups of the wider region (25, 76). As has been shown, even within the overall quite homogenous-appearing LBK, recognizable boundaries did exist in many places (77⇓⇓–80).




Although the underlying supraregional causes for the recognized increase in mass violence in the late LBK undoubtedly were complex and multifactorial, a significant increase in population followed by adverse climatic conditions (drought), possibly coupled with the inability of long-settled farmers to practice the avoidance behavior by which hunter-gatherers typically evade conflict (75), seems to have been an important component of the overall picture (4). As previous research has shown, climatic changes, especially those leading to increasing unpredictability of or even significant decreases in agricultural production, have played major roles in the change and collapse of societies throughout human history (4, 81, 82). Ecological imbalance and perceived or actual resource stress were suggested previously as some of the main reasons for massacres and warfare in general (55, 64, 83), and at the end of the LBK aggression might have been aggravated further by patrilineally determined social inequality, especially with regard to access to coveted, high-quality farmland, food, and possibly prestige goods (9, 13, 14, 76, 84).

These tribal communities, and the warbands within, were small (30-40 people is tiny) and genetically/socially tight-nit, which lends to the intimacy of "family." And competing tribes/bands were likely close neighbors. And we all know that within the mob, "families" can go to war when there are real or perceived threats to a family's honor, livelihood and security.

Honestly, I just think that at as an Italian-American, you're sensitive about the Mafia/Mob analogy as it relates to negative stereotypes concerning Italians. And within the context of speaking about "Neolithic Farmers from Near East," I get it, I sincerely do--I'm not trying to push any agenda or help bigots push theirs but again, 1.) I wasn't making any correlation based off of ethnic stereotypes and 2.) my analogy is actually a bit on the nose and not far-fetched and illogical at all. The mass genocide/ethnic cleansing involved in WWII, the Balkan wars or even in the Walking dead are massive in scope. What took place amongst these LBK tribes was much smaller--almost quite literally "family sized." And atrocities carried out between warring families reeks of the mob more so than it does Hitler.

Angela
10-08-16, 02:44
Oh, honestly, let it go. Just stop trying to justify such a silly analogy. Perhaps because we were speaking about southern Europe your mind just went there. Or maybe you'd just watched a mob movie. I don't know what brought it to your mind. You thought it was funny. It wasn't funny; it was at best silly, and certainly not an apt analogy at all. Don't get me wrong, I sometimes let my need to be witty get me into trouble by making some trite or trivial comparison. When called on it, however, I usually have the sense to either apologize or stay silent. I don't generally did the hole deeper.

Yes, in both cases there is violence over resources, but that can be said about practically every war or dispute in human history. Are we going to call them all "mob hits"? Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't remember wars between competing tribes normally being described that way. Was Germany invading Poland a "mob hit"? How about Japan bombing the U.S.? Or, I know, what about when the people of Woodbury under their leader "The Governor" tried to attack Rick and the other protagonists in their prison fortress in "The Walking Dead"? Was that a mob hit too? Why does the size of the settlements matter, or the type of technology? There weren't a lot of people around during the Neolithic, although more than in the Mesolithic, and so settlements were small. So what? Settlements were small on the American frontier too. When the Indians attacked a frontier settlement and killed as many of the inhabitants as couldn't manage to scuttle off, kidnapped the youngest,and then burned the settlement to the ground because the British and Dutch settlers were encroaching on their hunting grounds, was that a mob hit? You know you wouldn't describe them in that way.

There's absolutely no meaningful correlation between members of a criminal gang trying to kill the members of a rival gang, which is certainly not specific to the Mafia, and an existential struggle for existence by competing settlements or even competing tribes in a world beset by climate change and soil depletion or invasion. Since you insist on pursuing this, it's a very trite and trivial analogy. Whether it's also insulting against Italian Americans I don't know. Was it? Would you have said it was like an ISIS attack? Or, I don't know, like the Mau Mau attacks against whites in Kenya? Or is it only Italian-Americans who are fair game for ultra-liberals, like rural, conservative, American whites are fair game? You know, the ones who cling to their God and their guns.

Mafia "families" in the U.S. aren't families at all; they are criminal gangs composed of not very bright and more than slightly sociopathic if not psychopathic men who couldn't make it any other way and so drifted into crime. They were the boys who beat up and stole the lunches of the good Italian-American boys on their way to school. You know, the boys like Antonin Scalia.


Do you think the members of the Gambino "family" were all related to each other? That isn't to say, of course, that once a man accumulated power he didn't sometimes bring his sons into the family "business" or use his daughters to cement alliances, but that's true of all enterprises, royal "families", aristocratic "families", business "families". It's just human nature. I find it very interesting that as the actual "family" goes the way of the dodo bird every conglomeration of people with an even temporary purpose is suddenly a "family". The word has become meaningless.

It is indeed "beyond me" why the American media and public so romanticizes them. They eat better than other criminal gangs, and they seem to have more fun than most of them as depicted in the media, but they're still Italian, after all. They also used to adhere a bit more to the ancient honor code of their land, including the duty to remain silent and not report other members to the authorities, and maybe they came from more cohesive families than most. That's it, and even that is long gone. The Godfather is a fantasy, a beautiful fantasy, and one I've watched innumerable times, but it's a fantasy nonetheless. Even the Bonanos were not like the Corleones. Goodfellas is a fantasy too, although closer to reality. John Gotti is not Michael Corleone. He's not even Gambino. He's a loud mouthed idiot, but that's a good thing, because he spelled the effective end of the Cosa Nostra. As for Gravano, he is certifiable and the scum of the earth. He doesn't have a clue what honor or "family" means, either personally or "professionally".


No, I'm afraid the analogy is still silly. Now, I have other things to do. You can keep on posting as long as you want. I'm done discussing this trivial point and I won't be responding.

Wanderlust
10-08-16, 05:09
Oh, honestly, let it go. Just stop trying to justify such a silly analogy. Perhaps because we were speaking about southern Europe your mind just went there. Or maybe you'd just watched a mob movie. I don't know what brought it to your mind. You thought it was funny. It wasn't funny; it was at best silly, and certainly not an apt analogy at all. Don't get me wrong, I sometimes let my need to be witty get me into trouble by making some trite or trivial comparison. When called on it, however, I usually have the sense to either apologize or stay silent. I don't generally did the hole deeper.

Yes, in both cases there is violence over resources, but that can be said about practically every war or dispute in human history. Are we going to call them all "mob hits"? Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't remember wars between competing tribes normally being described that way. Was Germany invading Poland a "mob hit"? How about Japan bombing the U.S.? Or, I know, what about when the people of Woodbury under their leader "The Governor" tried to attack Rick and the other protagonists in their prison fortress in "The Walking Dead"? Was that a mob hit too? Why does the size of the settlements matter, or the type of technology? There weren't a lot of people around during the Neolithic, although more than in the Mesolithic, and so settlements were small. So what? Settlements were small on the American frontier too. When the Indians attacked a frontier settlement and killed as many of the inhabitants as couldn't manage to scuttle off, kidnapped the youngest,and then burned the settlement to the ground because the British and Dutch settlers were encroaching on their hunting grounds, was that a mob hit? You know you wouldn't describe them in that way.

There's absolutely no meaningful correlation between members of a criminal gang trying to kill the members of a rival gang, which is certainly not specific to the Mafia, and an existential struggle for existence by competing settlements or even competing tribes in a world beset by climate change and soil depletion or invasion. Since you insist on pursuing this, it's a very trite and trivial analogy. Whether it's also insulting against Italian Americans I don't know. Was it? Would you have said it was like an ISIS attack? Or, I don't know, like the Mau Mau attacks against whites in Kenya? Or is it only Italian-Americans who are fair game for ultra-liberals, like rural, conservative, American whites are fair game? You know, the ones who cling to their God and their guns.

Mafia "families" in the U.S. aren't families at all; they are criminal gangs composed of not very bright and more than slightly sociopathic if not psychopathic men who couldn't make it any other way and so drifted into crime. They were the boys who beat up and stole the lunches of the good Italian-American boys on their way to school. You know, the boys like Antonin Scalia.


Do you think the members of the Gambino "family" were all related to each other? That isn't to say, of course, that once a man accumulated power he didn't sometimes bring his sons into the family "business" or use his daughters to cement alliances, but that's true of all enterprises, royal "families", aristocratic "families", business "families". It's just human nature. I find it very interesting that as the actual "family" goes the way of the dodo bird every conglomeration of people with an even temporary purpose is suddenly a "family". The word has become meaningless.

It is indeed "beyond me" why the American media and public so romanticizes them. They eat better than other criminal gangs, and they seem to have more fun than most of them as depicted in the media, but they're still Italian, after all. They also used to adhere a bit more to the ancient honor code of their land, including the duty to remain silent and not report other members to the authorities, and maybe they came from more cohesive families than most. That's it, and even that is long gone. The Godfather is a fantasy, a beautiful fantasy, and one I've watched innumerable times, but it's a fantasy nonetheless. Even the Bonanos were not like the Corleones. Goodfellas is a fantasy too, although closer to reality. John Gotti is not Michael Corleone. He's not even Gambino. He's a loud mouthed idiot, but that's a good thing, because he spelled the effective end of the Cosa Nostra. As for Gravano, he is certifiable and the scum of the earth. He doesn't have a clue what honor or "family" means, either personally or "professionally".


No, I'm afraid the analogy is still silly. Now, I have other things to do. You can keep on posting as long as you want. I'm done discussing this trivial point and I won't be responding.

Yeah, thanks for confirming the obvious, that you're hypersensitive about the Mafia/mob and its negative connotations as it relates to Italian stereotypes. I heard your unconscious loud and clear. And more than once, I said that it wasn't my intent to offend, and seeing as how you never directly said that you were offended (I had to somewhat infer based off of your snarky tone), I did not feel compelled to officially apologize. I can appreciate a fair amount of smugness and condescension when called for but you consistently act that way towards me while you coddle the likes of Tomenable and his bigoted, anti-intellectual irrationality. Is it because he has a "conservative" bent more in line with your worldview? Because surely I am not more obnoxious than he is and yet in our limited interactions, I can't recall a moment when you weren't smug and condescending. Regardless, I've tried to show a certain amount of respect because you're of my parent's generation and I actually like and agree with much of what you say but you need to un-clinch and relax. It's not that serious.