Indian Givers

Indian Givers

How the Indians of the Americas Transformed the World

Book - 1988
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"As entertaining as it is thoughtful....Few contemporary writers have Weatherford's talent for making the deep sweep of history seem vital and immediate." THE WASHINGTON POST After 500 years, the world's huge debt to the wisdom of the Indians of the Americas has finally been explored in all its vivid drama by anthropologist Jack Weatherford. He traces the crucial contributions made by the Indians to our federal system of government, our democratic institutions, modern medicine, agriculture, architecture, and ecology, and in this astonishing, ground-breaking book takes a giant step toward recovering a true American history.
Publisher: New York, N.Y. : Crown Publishers, 1988
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780517569696
Branch Call Number: E59.I53 W43 1988
970 .004 W362i
Characteristics: x, 272 p. ; 24 cm


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SPPL_János Mar 15, 2018

A mindblowing demonstration of how history and culture were actively shaped by New World resources. For example the colonization of the New World was tied to a European population explosion fed by Native American crops like corn and potatoes and underwritten by the gold looted from the Aztecs and Inka. A quick, easy read that will truly change the way you look at the world.

Oct 30, 2017

I was afraid this book was going to be dry, but instead I found it hard to put down. Almost thirty years after this edition came out, twenty-first century readers probably won't be too surprised that chocolate and vanilla came from the Americas. However, it's probably still not common knowledge that quinine, the cure for malaria, and aspirin originated here as well. More surprising is that Native Americans, particularly the Iroquois, inspired the political and social philosophies of both Thomas More ("Utopia") and Karl Marx; in fact, the federalism essential to our American system of government is directly inspired by Native American governance, via both Thomas Paine and Benjamin Franklin.

With the exception of the chapter on Urban Planning, this was a fascinating read.


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