Presentation on theme: "Plague, Cold, and the Limits of Disaster in the Fourteenth Century"— Presentation transcript:
1 Plague, Cold, and the Limits of Disaster in the Fourteenth Century Chapter 14Plague, Cold, and the Limits of Disaster in the Fourteenth Century
2 Review QuestionsHOW DID the climate change globally in the fourteenth century?What was the plague, and where did it come from?WHICH PARTS of the world suffered most from the plagues of the fourteenth century?WHAT WERE the social and political effects of the plague in China, the Islamic world, and Europe?WHY DID some parts of the world not suffer from plague?HOW DID the absence of plague affect Japan, Java, India, Mali, and cultures around the Pacific Ocean?
3 Climate Change: Global vs. Local Effects Long-term, medium-term, short-term processes:Ice Ages over thousands of yearsWarming/cooling periods of hundreds of years within periods of global warmingShort-term interruptions: El Nino effect in tropics/S. hemisphere“Little Ice Age” begins in early 1200s, lasts 500 yearsDisrupts shipping, agricultureIce cap moves southward, temperatures plunge throughout EurasiaDroughts, famines increase with increased ice/cooling of atmosphere
4 What was the plague? Where did it come from? Yunnan province in China, possibly; Mongol steppe, maybe; not knownWhat was it?Not just one disease, but many. Main disease is bubonic plaguetransmitted in a number of ways, including flea bites, contact with an infected person or animal, or through the air.Typhus, influenza, smallpox, possibly anthrax accompanied bubonic plagueAll these illnesses originated w/close human contact with domesticated animals.How and why did it arise?Essentially a medical mystery.A confluence of events (evolution of diseases making transmission easier, poor hygiene, lack of understanding about how diseases spread, high population concentrations) helped.
5 Global Effects China Social and political effects Massive population lossLoss of power for Mongols in China by 1368Loss of the “mandate of heaven”Reestablishment of native Chinese rule under the MingEconomic effectsTemporary commercial and trade loss on the Silk RoadGovernment lost revenues because of lost taxesEuropeClergy was especially hard-hitLeveling effect, as all die from plague and famineLabor costs increase as workforce dies off
6 The Age of Plague: European Effects Peasants: end of serfdom, many gain freedom, better wages available in the citiesMonarchs take advantage of aristocratic families weakened by the disasters to centralize their power.Many become more religious, but now more often in personal devotions.Franciscans: die in enormous numbers because of their care for the sick, but also gain tremendous respect.Many begin to question the church.The scapegoating of Jewish and Muslim communities, along with others, rises in Europe. Persecution, forced out of France, EnglandEconomic effectsInitial deflation and economic declineDesire for luxury goods increasesMore and more different opportunities for making money arise.Economy takes off as population begins to grow again.
7 The Age of Plague: Islam Islamic WorldSocial and political effectsMassive population lossWeakens Il-Khan ruleEconomic effectsWorsens an already bad situation resulting from economic mismanagement during the Il-Khan period
8 Effects on the Periphery Java and SumatraSocial and political effectsBoth states are able to solidify imperial rule over larger areas that are free from interference by the Mongols.Economic effectsGain in wealth from trade in the South PacificDelhi SultanateSocial and Political effectsIbn Tughluq was able to consolidate power in India without interference from the Mongols.Economic EffectsIncreased wealth from the united state lasted for a time, though by the end of Ibn Tughluq’s reign many states within his realm were asserting their independence.Mali EmpireThe Sahara blocked the diseases, as it blocked human invaders and allowed West African kingdoms and empires to develop.The gold wealth of these regions developed increasingly during the fourteenth century and made its kings some of the wealthiest rulers in the world.
9 The plague brought benefits to some and disaster to others The plague brought benefits to some and disaster to others. Most importantly it reveals how humans are tied to their larger ecosystem and how vulnerable we are. It also illustrates how even the most alarming tragedies often can be the catalysts of dramatic change that is often not for the worse.
10 Is a new plague possible? Discussion QuestionIs a new plague possible?ConsiderGlobal communications opens pathways for the global spread of new pathogens. Note the spread of AIDS, which some have called the new plague. How does it compare to the 14th-century plague?Rapid evolution is creating “superbugs” (bacteria resistant to all known antibiotics) and viruses (like avian flu) with new and potentially deadly propertiesAs recently as 1919, over 20 million people died of influenza in the wake of World War I.Can advances in modern medicine protect us from a global catastrophe on the scale of the 14th-century plagues?Or are we simply staving off the inevitable?
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