World History Since 1500 | First Test with answers and explanations

Multiple Choice (choose the best answer for two points each)

___1) For tens of thousands of years humans have made use of every view available of the stars and the surrounding environment in attempt to make sense of their world and their role in it. Such thinking is synonymous with with (A. Astronomy, B. Paleontology, C. Cosmology, D. Anthropology, E. Paleopathology).

Answer: C. Cosmologies, unlike scientific fields of study concern themselves with the "bigger picture," asking questions like why are we here, not how we are here, as is the focus of science.

___2)Through its emphasisis on the relationship between humans, animals, and plants, the the Cherokee story, "The Origin of Disease and Medicine," can be MOST CLOSELY ASSOCIATED with which scientific field? (A. Astronomy, B. Paleontology, C. Buddhism, D. Paleopathology, E. Anthropology).
Answer: B. Paleontology reveals the complex and interdependent web of life that links humans with plants and animals, over the course of the history of life on earth.

___ 3) From the perspective of anthropology and paleopathology, the status of women and human health in general diminished with the (A. Agricultural Revolution, B. Columbian Exchange, C. use of tobacco, D. Atlantic Slave Trade, E. increasing consumption of sugar).

Answer: A. From the perspective of 100,000 of human history and the history of human diseases the Agricultural Revolution marks a period in which men gained control of an agricultural surplus and the beuracracy necessary to manage its production. Human health diminished due to a less diverse diet. The status of women also diminished relative to the longue duree of the previous 90,000 years when societies were smaller scale and women's contributions to the hunter/gatherer lifestyle was more significant to the family..

___ 4) The first world historian to argue that historical events are affected by different forces simultaneously in the short term, middle term, and long duree was (A. Fernand Braudel, B. Winston Churchill, C. Charles V, D. De Las Casas, E. Vladamir Lenin)

Answer: A. Fernand Braudel is the first European historian to approach the rise of Europe as a global power from different perspectives of time and geography in a global perspective.

___ 5)  Over the longue duree in Eurasia, Mesopotamia’s proximity to Europe, Africa, and Asia made it a dynamic cultural and economic crossroads that inspired nomadic pastoral peoples a religion that would become the forerunner to two more world relgions in the region? (A. Hinduism, B. Humanism, C. Judaism, D. Protestantism, E. Catholicism).

Answer: C. Hebrews migrated between Mesopotamia and Egypt for hundreds if not thousands of years before their experiences in these cultural hearths led to Judaism. Judaism would form the basis for two other religions, Christianity and Islam over the following centuries.

___ 6) The Eurasian Steppe linked Europe and Asia over the long duree where nomadic, pastoral tribes first domesticated the (A. chicken, B. cow, C. horse, D. camel, E. llama)

Answer: C. Thanks to the horse and their mastery by the nomadic peoples living in Eurasia created probably the most sigificant human/animal dynamic in world history because it enabled namadic peoples to interact and often dominate the river valley civilizations surrounding the steppe. After the Equine Revolution, approximately 1500 BCE, most river valley civilizations were dominated by the nomadic invasions, leading to a rethinking of social and political structures. During the subsequent centuries, Greek and Chinese philosophies and two of the most significant world religions, Judaism and Buddhism helped create a Common Era, linking peoples across languages and cultures like never before.

___ 7) While agricultural surpluses necessitated the development of written languages in major river-valley civilizations in Eurasia and the Americas, in Africa, agricultural surpluses were not as easily obtained because of draft animals’ susceptibility to a deadly disease transmitted by the (A. Europeans, B. Muslims, C. mosquitoes, D. tsetse fly, E. monsoon winds).

Answer: D. Knowledge that the tstetse fly transmitts the African sleeping sickness to animals and humans was only dicovered in the twentieth century, but it helps explain why the use of draft animals for large scale agriculture never developed in sub-saharan Africa as it did in other regions in Eurasia were the fly is not present.

___ 8) Over the course of thousands of years of separation of native Americans, resistance to disease became a huge factor  relative ease with which the Europeans had in colonizing (A. the Americas, B. Japan, C. China, D. Africa, E. Australia).

Answer: A. That the Europeans could not colonize Africa in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries while they could colonize the Americas is explained in no small way by the lack of resistance to European diseases among American Indians. Africans, because of their proximity to Eurasia, had resistancies to European diseases as well as tropical disease also found in South America.

___ 9) Resistance to both European and tropical diseases was the reason there was such a demand for which people to labor in the New World? (A. Algonquins, B. Cherokees, C. Africans, D. Jesuits, E. Pilgrims)

Answer: C. Indeed, Africans from the tropical region of Western and Central Africa in particular had more resistancies to diseases, European and tropical, than any other group of people on the planet.

___ 10) In northern European countries, monopolies were granted to certain companies to conduct long distance trade. This system of economic policy is called (A. capitalism, B. mercantilism, C. laisez faire, D. the "invisible hand," E. enlightened rule).

Answer: B. mercantilism

___ 11) NOT among other attributes of Holland’s economic policies was (A. national banks, B. free trade, C. joint stock market, D. granting of monopolies to certain companies, E. military support for overseas companies).

Answer: B. Free trade is not an economic policy.

___ 12) Over the course of a hundred years between 1500 and 1600, many peoples from Spain, fleeing the Spanish Inquisition, brought their significant financial resources and skills when they migrated to (A. North America, B. Africa, C. Holland, D. France, E. Australia).

___ 13) NOT among the factors that contributed to the decline of Spain was (A. defeat of the Spanish Armada, B. inflation caused by an influx of American silver, C. highly centralized control over the colonies, D. poor political leadership, E. the Protestant Reformation).

Answer: E. the Protestant Refomation did not lead to Spanish decline directly, but it did give northern European monarchs and individuals license to break away from the controls of the Catholic Church and European power that had been dominated by southern Europe.

___ 14) In the wake of the tragedy in New Orleans after hurricane Katrina, the technological expertise of WHICH European country dating back to the 1600s is being consulted to better protect the city from the tidal surges resulting from the hurricane? (A. Holland, B. England, C. France, D. Spain, E. Portugal).

Answer: A. Holland, like New Orleans, had to overcome the challenges of draining wetlands that were below sea level.

___ 15) Governments, religions, and other social organizations have frequently responded to the inequities, or injustices, of an economic system by proposing policies to insure that more people get an adequate chance to benefit from it. Bartoleme De Las Casas, a Spanish priest in the New World argued that the Spanish should show more respect and sympathy for (A. the British, B. the Creoles, C. Africans, D. Native Americans, E. Cajuns).

Answer: D. Due in part to the fact that Indians were not resistant to European diseases, De Las Casas believed them to be unfit for enslavement and the harsh labor it entailed. De Las Casas' letters to the the Spanish monarchy and Catholic clergy provoked one of the first debates in Europe regarding the souls of non-Europeans and their relative right to be free.

___ 16) Guilds are comparable to which of the following modern social organizations (A. monasteries, B. unions, C. charities, D. universities, E. diasporas

Answer: B. Workers and tradespeople had to band together in guilds and unions, three centuries later, to insure that they received a working wage.

___ 17) Among the products Europe had to offer Asia in the 1600s was (A. porcelain, B. beef, C. cotton, D. silk, E. wool).

Answer: E. Wool is the first European product that they had an global advantage in creating and processing.

___ 18) Among the animals that Europe had to offer the Americas as a part of the Columbian exchange included: A. monkeys, B. llamas, C. possums, D. pigs, E. humans.

Answer: D. Pigs are among the other European animals like horses, cattle, goats and sheep that they introduced to the New World.

___ 19) In the short term of a lifetime, which of the following explorers succeeded in circumnavigating the world? A. Columbus, B. Diaz, C. De Gama, D. Balboa, E. Magellan 

Answer: E. Although Magellan died during the three years it took his expedition around the world, most of his crew survived the journey and he was given the credit.

Matching Significant Terms (choose the best answer for one point each)

F.___ 1. Camel

(Shifting trade routes across the Arabian peninsula just before the rise of Islam, as well as expanding trade across the Sahara in the Islamic context)

D.___ 2. Ethiopia (a Christian diasporic trade center during the Roman empire that controlled trade along the Red Sea)

H. ___ 3. Cheng He (Muslim, Chinese eunich during the early 15th century who represented the superiority of Chinese naval technology compared to European ships at the time. The "last" of the great Chinese voyages

S. ___ 4. Edict of Nantes (After the Hundred Years War, the Catholics and Protestants, called Huegenots, made peace and religious toleration was granted under this edict until Louis XIV revoked it in favor of Catholicism.

K. ___ 5. Diaspora (a key feature of the Afro-Eurasian economy beginning in the Roman-Han Common Era in which communities of believers in the world religions, Judaism, Buddhism, Christianity, and Islam established trader communities all around Afro-Eurasia.

T.___ 6. Counter-Reformation (Catholic response to the Protestant "heresies" to clarify church doctrine and power abroad through various monastic orders, including the Jesuits and Dominicans.

O.___ 7. Protestant Wind (saved the English from the full wrath of the Spanish Armada, sent by Spain to defeat the growing British naval power.)

E.___ 8. Hajj (pilgrimage distination once in the life of a Muslim that also helps to cultivate international travel in the Arab/Islamic world economy)

A.___ 9. Lanteen sail (naval technology in the Arab dominated Indian Ocean Economy that enabled sailing with and against the wind. European sailors adopted this technology on their caravels thus enabling them to dominate the Indian Ocean in the 16th century.

L.___ 10. Malaccan Strait (one of two gateways to trade with China including Constantinope which was taken by the Ottomans in 1453)

Q.___ 11. Sufi (an exceptional branch of Islam that emphasizes and ecstatic union with god through chanting, song, and dance. They put an appealing face on Islam as the empire expands into new regions)

I. ___ 12. Jinzya (the tax on non-Muslims that shows the economic advantage of becoming a Muslim)

J.___ 13. Asiento (represented the shifting power from Spain to England as they sub-contracted the shipping of slaves exclusively through the British for over two centuries)

G.___ 14. Caravels (One of the keys to understanding the rise of Europe as a naval power, these highly maneuverable ships were also equipped with cannons making them an unstoppable force in the world's oceans.)

M.___ 15. Thomas Aquinas (The quinticential Renaisance/Christian Humanist who argued, initially against the wishes of the church, that faith and reason are not necessary contradictory)

N.___ 16. Kosovo (still a touchstone for conflict between Serbian Christians and Muslims, this city was the western extremity of the Ottoman empire)

C.___ 17. Gutenberg (given credit for "inventing" the printing press, or adapting the original Chinese press, Gutenberg made it possible for literature of the Renasisance and the Protestant Reformation to reach beyond the clerical elite)

P.___ 18. Janissary (The Ottomans, in part because they were from the Steppe originally, trained a special military force from among Christians. Taken into the corps at a young age, they were indoctrinated into a special synchretic blend of Sufi Islam and Chritianity to produce a loyal but increasingly dominant military order)

B.___ 19. Peter the Great (Csar of Russia who did his darndest to catch-up his countrymen with Western Europe through the construction of St. Petersburg, the "window on the West," advocating science education and a beard tax in hopes that making Russian men look like Western Europeans, they might start thinking like them.

The answer selections:

A. Allowed easier sea travel in Arab world economy --- Lanteen sail

B. Built a "window on the west" --- Peter the Great

C. Made reading possible for more people --- Gutenburg

D. African trade center along the Red Sea --- Ethiopia

E. Insured that many Muslims world travel great distances at least once in their lives --- Hajj

F. Expanded trade possibilities across the Sahara desert --- camel

G. Mounted cannons on this gave Europeans an military advantage --- Caravels

H. Navigated as far away as the Swahili coast of Africa --- Cheng He

I. Tax on non-Muslims --- Jinzya

J. Gave sole right of trade to the British --- Asiento

K. Jews, Christians, and Buddhists in far-flung regions conducting trade --- Diaspora

L. A Gateway to trade with China --- Malaccan Straight

M. Humanist who argued that Faith was reconcilable with Scientific thinking --- Thomas Aquinas

N. The Western limit of the Ottoman Empire --- Kosovo

O. Helped defeat the Spanish Armada --- "Protestant Wind"

P. Ottoman hired fighting force --- Janissary

Q. Creative branch of Islam --- Sufi

S. Secured religious rights for Protestants for a time --- Edict of Nantes

T. The Jesuits are a result of this campaign --- Counter Reformation


Short Response (Answer three out of four for six points each)

1) Give examples to show to what extent “1500 C.E.” is a culturally-specific benchmark in world history? (1500 and C.E. are two distinct parts)

1500 represents a benchmark directly from the European Christian periodization starting very close to the birth of Christ (A.D.3) and it is comparable to the Muslim calender which is close to 1500 at present (1500 years since Muhammad's exile from Mecca to Medina). C.E. refers to a Common Era when the Roman Empire and the Han Chinese Empire were linked in trade indirectly through traders across the Eurasian Steppe. Around the start of the Common Era, C.E.1, the Roman and Han Chinese Empires were at the peak of their respective empirial powers; while the shift from B.C./A.D. to B.C.E./C.E. in references denotes more than the the previous Christian world view, it does not denote anything related to developments in the Americas and other parts of the world that were not in the Roman/Han Chinese economic systems.

2) Refer to the quotes on the right to answer the following question: How is the writing of history inevitably revisionary?


History will be kind to me for I intend to write it.
Winston Churchill

You can't blame the youth, you can't fool the youth.”
Bob Marley

Winston Churchill, the British prime minister and advocate for British Imperialism argued that history would be kind to him for he intended to write it to emphasize the fact that those in power control to a large extent what is said about historical events. Churchill's version of history would justify the actions of his British compatriots in their sometimes violently repressive colonial ventures in the Americas, Asia, and Africa. The story of from the perspective of the subject peoples would not be told until that gained control of the the power to write their own histories. Bob Marley echoes the sentiment of the subjugated peoples, Jamaican peoples in particular, who "can't be be fooled" into believing that the people who enslaved and oppressed them were heroic. Marley's lyric, "you can't blame the youth" explains the youth's penchant for violence and arrogance in terms of the unbalanced view of history that they have.

3) To what extent does the recent historiography of Africa or the Americas show that world historical research become less Eurocentric?

As historians have learned more about African and American history from the perspectives afforded through recent science in archeology, anthropology, paleopathology, and native people's accounts of the past, the historiography of Africa and the Americas has become less Eurocentric.


4) What has demography revealed regarding world history that earlier world histories have not (give specific examples)?

Demographic studies like the records of the slave trade by British asiento reveals much more about what part of Africa slaves come and how the people faired once they arrived. Population growth in North America versus the Caribbean reveal much about the treatment of slaves. In Europe, demographic studies of Jewish migration from Spain to northern European countries and the Ottoman Empire show the extent of the repression of the Spanish Inquisition.


Extended Response (Answer two out of three for twelve points each)

1) How can one explain the sudden rise of Europe as a global maritime power and the relative decline of Asian powers in the 16th century?


Open trade with China during Pax Mongolia as exemplified by Marco Polo's Travels, as well as the Renaissance discoveries of Greek, Arab, and Indian philopsphy, science, and mathematics respectively, put Europe in motion for a rise relative to the land-based empires of China, the Ottomans, the Safavids, and Mughal Empires. Since the Ottoman Empire shut down trade opportunities through Constantinope, the gateway to land-based trade with Asia, another route was necessary. Spain was just completing their Reconquista, or reconquering of Spanish lands after centuries of Muslim control. What started as an attempt to outflank the Muslims in North Africa, led to further explorations. European naval and military technology also gave them a big advantage in the Indian ocean where they quickly defeated the Muslims and establish ports in India and Indonesia. South American silver gave Europe a commodity that China wanted, and the Mercantilistic policies of northern European nations further stegnthened Euopean naval dominance of the seas by the late 16th century.


2) Over the course of the film, Black Robe, to what extent were the the Algonquins and Jesuits capable of understanding one another? The Algonquins and


Jesuits were capable of understanding each other to the extent that their survival depended on each other. The young Jesuit priest, Father LeForgue, came to love the Algonquins to the extent that he could feel compasion for their suffering in sickness and in death; and he could probably appreciate their compassion for him at times when he was found by the hunters when he was lost on the island. Similarly, the Algonquins could appreciate Father LeForgue in his compassion for the sick and dying among them, when he walked right up to the dying wife of the chief and when he performed a baptism on the infant; but they could not not understand why he could attribute no significance to his dreams or why his heaven was not a place for women or tobacco. The chief refused baptism up until he died while he bid the priest farewell as a friend. The Hurons at the mission accepted babtism only because they felt they had nothing to lose as their people were dying of the fever.



3) Compare and contrast how the differing cosmologies of Renaissance Europeans and the Cherokee Indians could potentially affect their relationships with each other and the environment?


Renaissance Europeans as portrayed by the two documents read in class, the "Dignity of Man" and the "Soul of Man" show their view of man in creation as above the animals and plants in the "filthy" realm. The Cherokee Indians, on the other hand, saw their existence as tied to that of the plants and animals and the plants and animals even able to take revenge on the humans for not respecting them. This difference would give the Euopeans greater freedom to use the environment with disregard to the preexisting systems that the Cherokees to which the Cherokees felt attached. The Europeans would have a hard time relating to the Cherokee cosmology that the human, plant, and animal realms are part in parcel to the whole, each dependent on the other. They might view such a view as inferior to their own Christian cosmology. Likewise, the Cherokees could see the European view as a limited, naive view that could even appear blasphemous. Certainly, the Cherokee cosmology, giving plants and animals some ablity to dictate sickness and death on humans would seem blasphemous. The two cosmologies, however, might not be completely opposed to the other and there could be some features that are compatible to the other. The Christian god is, after all, god of the plants and animals too, and God can certainly go through plants and animals to administer sickness and cure. The Cherokees, as well, might appreciate the Christian emphasis on the unique qualities of humans and their potential for a spiritual existence that transcends all earthly concerns.