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BEFORE YOU WATCH: Era 2 Overview

Use the “Three Close Reads” approach as you watch the video below.
Use the “Three Close Reads” approach as you watch the video below (next in the lineup!). If you want to learn more about this strategy, click here.

First read: preview and skimming for gist

Before you watch, you should skim the transcript first. The skim should be very quick and give you the gist (general idea) of what the video is about. You should be looking at the title, thumbnails, pictures, and first few seconds of the video for the gist.

Second read: key ideas and understanding content

Now that you’ve skimmed the video transcript and taken a quick peek at the video, you should preview the questions you will be answering. These questions will help you get a better understanding of the concepts and arguments that are presented in the video. Keep in mind that when you watch the video, it is a good idea to write down any vocab you read or hear that is unfamiliar to you.
By the end of the second close read, you should be able to answer the following questions:
  1. This video begins by stating that for almost all of human history, our ancestors were foragers. What is a forager?
  2. An archaeologist named James Mellaart found a painting on the wall of a house in Çatalhöyük. How did he interpret that painting, and why was it significant?
  3. Çatalhöyük was a Neolithic society. What does Neolithic mean and how did Neolithic societies live, according to the video?
  4. We generally think that life must have been easier for farmers than for foragers. What evidence is produced in this video that suggests this may not have been the case?
  5. What was the cognitive revolution?
  6. What do many scholars now believe about the painting found by James Mellaart?

Third read: evaluating and corroborating

Finally, here are some questions that will help you focus on why this video matters and how it connects to other content you’ve studied.
At the end of the third read, you should be able to respond to these questions:
  1. You have not yet seen all of the articles and videos in this era, but based on what you learned in this video, and your previous knowledge, do you think it was likely that early farmers lived better lives than foragers, or not? Why?
  2. You have just learned about archaeologist James Mellaart’s interpretation of the map at Çatalhöyük. How did other scholars interpret the map later? What do these different interpretations suggest to you about how you should approach historical evidence?
Now that you know what to look for, it’s time to watch! Remember to return to these questions once you’ve finished watching.

Want to join the conversation?

  • blobby green style avatar for user Anshuman Tripathy
    Can't view the transcript of the video
    (5 votes)
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  • hopper cool style avatar for user zhiwenglim
    My answers:
    1. People who got their food by hunting or gathering wild fruit, roots, and grains

    2. Mellaart interpreted the painting as a volcano surrounded by buildings or houses. It is significant because it may be the first map in history and predates the first writing system.

    3. Neolithic means new stone. In neolithic societies, farming became a job due to a discovery of new tools, though people still forage for food. The social order is reality equal and there is no evidence of leaders or wealth hoarders.

    4. Researchers studied bones from farmers & foragers in the Neolithic Era around the world, and they discovered for now that foragers have healthier bones than farmers in terms of nutrition and ability to be infected by disease.

    5. A dramatic change in way humans could think, this influence how they communicate.

    6. Scholars believe Mellart either made a mistake in interpreting the painting, or he faked it.

    7. According to what I watched in the video, I think that early farmer may live better lives than foragers. My reasoning is while farmers may have poorer health compared to foragers, they are able to have a head start in using tools to improve their lives for the better .
    (4 votes)
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  • blobby green style avatar for user RickyL
    Panda! I hate you
    (2 votes)
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  • blobby green style avatar for user london.walker
    What is a forager?
    (1 vote)
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  • aqualine ultimate style avatar for user roman.deroam
    I kind of like history and also this is like one of those meme things like reddit or facebook
    (1 vote)
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