WORLD HISTORY AND LOCAL HISTORIES AS OBJECTS OF HISTORIOSOPHY
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Date of publication
01.06.2020
Public year
2020
ISBN
2618-7302
WORLD HISTORY AND LOCAL HISTORIES AS OBJECTS OF HISTORIOSOPHY
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The author proposes that the history of a single country (or its population or civilisation) and the history of mankind as a whole be treated as two different research tasks with their own methods of study. Individual subjects of world history have their own paths of evolution and are not required to go through the same stages of development, and the history of mankind is too complex a process to be tracked by the dynamic of a single indicator, for example, level of economic development or change in modes of production. Spiritual processes are no less important for the fate of mankind than technological revolutions. It is essential, therefore, to get rid of Eurocentric approach to world history, as there is no common evolutionary ladder for all countries and peoples to climb; each country runs through its own Antiquity and its own Middle Ages. But at the same time several meaningful watersheds, common to all of human history, can be discerned. They are: the appearance of Homo sapiens; the taming of fire; the appearance of appropriative economy with its branches (gathering, fishing, hunting); the late-Paleolithic “revolution”, upper-Paleolithic arts, arrival of religious notions; “Neolithic revolution”, productive economy, settled way of life; “Iron revolution”, plough agriculture, stalling livestock, arrival of mass armies; the spiritual breakthrough of the 1st century B.C.; emergence of moral religions and philosophical systems of “the Axis time” (Zoroastrianism, Buddhism, Jainism, Confucianism, Taoism, teachings of the Bible prophets, ancient philosophy) and the Ancient civilisation as a whole; scientific, aesthetic and spiritual breakthrough of the West in the Late Medieval and Early Modern time (Renaissance, Reformation, Enlightenment, geographical discoveries); invention of power-driven motor and the period of industrialism; beginning of the postindustrial period.
About authors
Leonid Alaev
Senior Research Fellow of the Department of Oriental History of the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences
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