Saturday, January 26, 2013

World History - Black Death and Aftermath!

Well.. I started my venture into the world of history with Coursera I must recommend this for all who are in quest for knowledge. A Good beginning for me but not so good end; December work pressure and holidays didn't allow me the complete it. Nevertheless I gained a lot of knowledge and got drawn more into history, which I felt very boring during my school days!!

Posting a few essays I have written under this section and these represent only my views.
Black death is one of the most devastating events in the human history which occurred around during 13th century and is believed to be have its origins in Central Asia and or China and spread it wings to europe via silk route.  this post attempts to explain What changed, and what survived, as a result of the plagues and disasters of the fourteenth-century in Afro-Eurasia?

The Triumph of Death : A painitng Source Wiki
The event of Black Death was indeed a milestone in the world history and has definitely played an important role in shaping the events that defined the world after math. Of course this event would have been an influence to many such events, but I would limit here to a few such events for the scope of this assignment.
Power Vacuum and rise of Ming Dynasty in China: With the barbaric Mangols controlling the entire silk route and Mongolian rule being at its peak before the Black Death, people would have felt better as their rule ended with this dramatic event. This would have also made sure that there is enough void and vacuum created in China for political and military power. As the history goes, ethnic Han Chinese seized this opportunity to liberate China which was under control of non-ethnic Mangols. The Ming dynasty is described by some as 'one of the greatest eras of orderly government and social stability in human history' [5].

Transportation: With the silk route falling under the most affected zones of Black Death, it would have probably necessitated the need of exploring other forms of the trade route. The desire of directly trading with China and perhaps India, and the disadvantages of travelling by land, the limited consignments that one can carry over the land, the risk and rewards especially after Black Death probably explains the sea voyages that we witness after the Black Death. Necessity is the mother of invention; I would rather believe that this event in the history of the world was a catalyst for new inventions and explorations.

Economic benefits: The deaths of such a size and magnitude with some countries losing 40% of their population [4] would have definitely caused shortage of labor in a hugely agrarian and merchant based economy. The abandoned fields would have been an opportunity for many of those who survived, the wars would have taken a break which would have ensured some peace and stability for some time, the surviving labor force could have demanded more wages, thereby increasing in spending. Collectively above factors could have contributed in rise of capitalism, urbanization and industrialization [2].

Effect on India: Surprisingly, Indian history doesn’t recognize this event of Black Death in a significant manner or at least I haven’t come across those since my school age. But even though the Mangol Invaders in the form of Timur the Lame plundered India and her cities, but it was Timur's great great grandson Babur later in the 1526 founded the Mughal Dynasty in India, who were to most stable rules of Pre-British era in India [7].

Survival of the fittest as the phrase goes in the biological evolutionary theory: With a near wipe out of mankind with most populated, traded route in the world the ones who survived were arguably stronger, had more resistance and were probably the fittest. To put it simply they had the genes that could endure this. And as per the general Darwinian philosophies, it would have helped mankind to evolve further with the best of the available genes, which in turn helped to build a better human race in the long run. The events we see such as Rise of Ming dynasty, Renaissance in Europe are mere testimonials of the race that was left out were more intellectually capable beings who were taking the world towards a better future

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