This discussion is about understanding the lifestyles of our human ancestors during the paleolithic–from the first anatomically modern humans over 300,000 years ago until the development of agriculture around 10,000 years ago. This time period–around 300,000 years–is far longer than any of our cities, countries, languages, clothing styles, traditions, or other activities have been around. In terms of subsistence, this 300,000 years is similar to what we think our ancestors before Homo sapiens did. Living in small groups, moving around the landscape, looking for food through foraging and hunting: these are arguably the human “normal.” Taking college classes and eating food from the store is truly bizarre behavior in the long view.
In the reading for this week, Fuentes talks in some detail about the development of compassion in our species, and ties this to creativity. He asks can we remain creative within ever larger communities?
For this week, I want to ask the related question:
“Can humans remain compassionate in ever larger communities?”
You can use info from other sources to support your position, you can even take a position that compassion isn’t necessary–but whatever position you take please do support it with at least one citation from somewhere.
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