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Notes on video lecture:
Unjust and Imagined Hierarchies
Choose from these words to fill the blanks below:
arbitrary, weighted, Hindu, suits, castes, dubious, discrimination, require, respecting, justification, aristocrats, foragers, instinctive, inevitable, fair, strangers, imagined, cooperation, natural
history after the agriculture revolution can largely be understood by answering this question: how did humans organize themselves into large cooperative networks when they lack the                        ability necessary to sustain such networks?
the short answer to this question is that humans created                  orders and invented writing which filled the gaps left by our biological inheritance
what were the impacts of these mass                        networks on the lives and relations of humans
for many, the appearance of these mass networks were a                blessings
these imagined orders were neither neutral nor         
they often divided people into                    groups and arranged these groups in hierarchies
upper level groups enjoyed privileges and power
lower ranking groups suffered from discrimination and oppression
e.g. the code of Hammurabi established a clear hierarchy of superiors, commoners, and slaves
groups are divided by             , race, religion, or wealth
they divide people into categories, then treat people according to that category without                      their true abilities
           society: if you want to marry, you want to know to which caste your potential spouse belongs to, much more important than their personality
cultures with these obvious separations into categories will claim that this is natural and                     , Hindus believe that a cosmic force and not human imagination is responsible for the division of the castes (from the story of the Purusha), they believe the differences are as rooted in the                world as, say, differences between the sun and the moon
Chinese believed that goddess created humans from earth, but that                        were created from good soil whereas commoners were formed from brown mud
however, these don't reflect any natural order, but are created by people who create laws
as far as we can tell, most the different methods by which societies in history have classified people into groups, most of them have been based on imaginary stories and lack evidence for their                            beyond the stories themselves
unfortunately complex human societies seem to                imagined hierarchies and unjust                             , some more than others, but scholars do not know of any complex society in history that was able to organize and maintain itself without some kind of imagined hierarchy and some kind of discrimination
this is because all of these imagined hierarchies serve an important social function: they enable                    to know how to treat one another without spending the time needed to become personally acquainted
even to walk down the street, we need the help of these imagined hierarchies, because, unlike ancient                 , we live in cities of millions of people, not in bands of dozens of people, and we have to have some reference to know how to treat all the strangers that we meet so we have various cues that we use to know how to treat them without getting to know each person individually, we treat people who are dressed in            differently than people who are dressed in rags, we treat women differently than men, we treat a priest different than a shopkeeper and rabbi differently than a gay man
all societies are based on these imagined hierarchies and social differences but not necessarily on the same set of differences
e.g. when British ruled India in 19th century, and you had an (1) untouchable, (2) Brahmin, (3) Protestant Englishman, (4) Catholic Irishman, if each of these people have the same propensity for doing business, they will not have the same opportunity to become rich since the economic hierarchy in 19th English society was                  with legal restrictions in favor of Hindu Brahmins and Protestant Englishmen
Indian society classified people according to caste, Ottoman society classified people according to religion, and modern American society gives importance to race and wealth
The Context of History and Our Extended Human Family
How Walking Upright Led to Better Social and Cooperative Skills
The Importance of Fire and Cooking
Why Did Other Human Species Become Extinct?
The Cognitive Revolution and the Beginning of Human History
The Language of Homo Sapiens
How Fictive Language Enabled Larger Social Groups
The Power of Imagined Realities
How the Ability to Tell Stories Enabled Humans to Cooperate in Massive Groups
The Cognitive Revolution and the Variety of Human Communities
Spiritual Beliefs of Early Humans
Politics and Warfare of Pre-Agricultural Societies
45,000 Years Ago: Human's Decimation of Australia's Large Mammals
14,000 BC: Human Migration to the Americas
Agriculture: The Good and the Bad
10,000 BC: Agricultural Revolution
The Origins of Agriculture
The Code of Hammurabi and Other Imagined Realities
Inter-Subjective Reality and Romantic Consumerism
The Human Brain's Outsourcing of Mathematics
Unjust and Imagined Hierarchies
Imagined Hierarchies in History
Culturally Defined Gender
Three Theories of Gender Domination
The Direction of Humankind: Global Unity
The Essence of Money
The History of Money
The Historical Definition of Empire
The Relationship between Science, European Imperialism and Capitalism
Science, Capitalism and European Imperialism
Columbus: Last Man of the Middle Ages, Vespucci: First Man of the Modern Age
European Empires, Science, and Capitalism
How Capitalism is Based on Trust in the Future
On the Interdependence of Science and Capitalism
How Capitalism Enabled Small European Countries to Explore and Conquer the World
The Relationship Between Capitalism, the Slave Trade, and Free Market Forces
Industrialization, Energy and Raw Materials
The Second Agricultural Revolution and its Effect on Animal Treatment
The Ethics of Capitalism and Consumerism
On Limitless Energy Resources and the Hegemony of Modern Time Schedules
State/Market vs. Family/Community
Humankind's Rigid and Violent Past, and Flexible and Peaceful Present
Reasons for Our Current Unprecedented Era of International Peace
Three Theories on the History of Happiness
Psychological and Biological Happiness
Measuring Human Happiness
The Future of Cyborgs and Robots
What Do We Want to Want?