Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Germs from what produced epidemics in Native American and Australian societies?

2. Some people feel that explaining why one group dominates another does what?

3. What was the importance of a written language?

4. What animal helped groups overthrow and conquer other groups?

5. Australia was joined together with which other area at the time that humans arrived?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why did food production not occur earlier in history?

2. What made the spread of Austronesian culture possible?

3. What is one new piece of information that has come to light since Diamond's work was first published?

4. Why were Europeans able to conquer Africans according to Diamond?

5. Fourteen species of large mammals were domesticated. Why weren't other species?

6. What advantages did the Fertile Crescent have in domesticating plants?

7. Did hunter-gatherers adopt the crops and agriculture from neighboring groups or did invaders bring with them the knowledge and crops?

8. What are the four different types of societies that Diamond discusses?

9. How did the ability to use domesticated plants and animals differentiate the Polynesian societies?

10. Why does Diamond believe that China was once more diverse than it is now?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Why do large mammals matter to Diamond's theory? Why is domestication important? What factors determine which large mammals are suitable to be domesticated?

Essay Topic 2

Why did the societies in New Guinea and Australia develop at different times? What differences were present between these areas?

Essay Topic 3

Choose one society on which to focus. Does this society have an advantage over others in terms of guns, germs, and steel? Explain why the society either had an advantage or why it was disadvantaged in relation to other groups.

(see the answer keys)

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