Governance at Present

The Globe

Few prehistorians living in today's all too well-populated and urbanized world now see this decisive last phase of the Neolithic Revolution as an unmixed blessing. The present drain on nature's resources, in some areas beyond her capacity for renewal, seems a very high price for what was once hailed unquestioningly as the progress of human culture. (Plato Prehistorian)



Southwest Asia



Later, the Romans, Arabs, and British would complete the conquest of Egypt, submerging almost entirely this distinctive civilization that was for so many years the light of the ancient world. Not until AD 1952 was Egypt again ruled by Egyptians. (Patterns in Prehistory)

Indus Valley






South America




North America

These early colonists described intensely stratified societies where the elites were able to draw almost without limit on the resources of the communities. Ethnographic accounts of Mississippian communities as they existed in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries--long after the culmination of Mississippian culture--describe an intensely class-conscious society in which nobles and warriors alternately exploited and abused the "stinkards," commoners and slaves who made up most of these societies. The upper classes were slavishly obeyed and respected. They frequently married the lower classes, but the aristocrat could divorce or kill the lower-ranking spouse, given even minor cause. In AD 1720 the French explorer Le Page du Pratz witnessed the funeral of "Great Sun," a ruler of the Natchez Mississippian people. On the occasion of his death, Great Sun's wives, servants, and relatives were drugged and then clubbed to death and buried with him. (Patterns in Prehistory)


The great monuments of Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam are all products of the late first and second millennia AD, and are intertwined with Chinese and Indian history. (Patterns in Prehistory)