Ecological Imperialism Summary

1017 Words5 Pages
Crosby is uses his book Ecological Imperialism to explain the disbursal of disease that came along with the expansion of Old World Europe outside of its mother country. Crosby’s Theory attributes the success of the conquistadors, the first English settlers, and the fur trade with the French to the disease they brought along with them. In other words, the Old World might not have been the spectacular adventurer and settlers they make themselves out to be. Crosby makes the reader question what would have happened if the natives of the New Worlds had the immunity to fight the European diseases? Questions like this are the reason that the first ten chapters of Ecological Imperialism are so important. The first ten chapters of Crosby’s book establish…show more content…
This is shown through another example of a primary source. The Kiowa of the southern Great Plains of North America wrote about how a mythic hero of their tribe was visited by a stranger in black with a tall hat (Crosby). Crosby made the comparison of the description between the stranger and a missionary to help solidify the validity of the native writing. The Kiowa suffered several smallpox epidemics in the nineteenth century which led to legends about the disease. In this example the Kiowa wrote a dialogue version of their point of view where the stranger is personified as smallpox. The Kiowa’s account stated that smallpox was “was one the white man” and that is said “I bring destruction”. By recording these statement and many others we can see that the Kiowa were aware of where the smallpox came from and knew some of the symptoms. Crosby cites that this text is a quote abbreviated from Alice Marriott and Carol Rachlin’s book American Indian Mythology. This is a primary source found in a secondary source. The strength of this text is the understanding of the Kiowa experience with small pox and their presentation of that understanding. The weakness of the text is not having a specific author to the
Open Document