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Descripción de editorial
"As entertaining as it is thoughtful....Few contemporary writers have Weatherford's talent for making the deep sweep of history seem vital and immediate." --Washington Post
After 500 years, the world's huge debt to the wisdom of the Indians of the Americas has finally been explored in all its vivid drama by anthropologist Jack Weatherford. He traces the crucial contributions made by the Indians to our federal system of government, our democratic institutions, modern medicine, agriculture, architecture, and ecology, and in this astonishing, ground-breaking book takes a giant step toward recovering a true American history.
The discovery and conquest of the New World changed the Old World forever, from economy and diet to the concept of personal freedom. Anthropologist Weatherford, author of Tribes on the Hill , examines the many contributions made by New World natives. Exploited in the mines of Peru and Mexico, Indian laborers produced the gold and silver that financed the rise of modern Europe. Weatherford points out that Indians were expert pharmacologists; they knew how to prevent goiter and scurvy, used ipecac and quinine. Their foods, especially the potato, revolutionalized European agriculture; they introduced chocolate, chili peppers and cocaine. Indian social organization was truly democratic, unlike the classic democracies in Europe, and Weatherford notes the connection with modern federal systems. He labors a bit on the topic of architecture but makes a convincing case for Indian Givers and the role they played in re-shaping the world.