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Old 05-31-2017, 07:40 AM
DSeid DSeid is offline
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 19,928
Originally Posted by even sven View Post
In other words, small scale non-mechanized farming is largely economically unviable, given any alternative.
Um no that's not other words for the same thing.

One model prevailing over time over another ≠ unviability of the latter, given any alternative.

Anyway since the discussion is now into cooperative group efforts vs more individualistic efforts - there is some interesting work on how the sort of farming needed for an area results in different levels of individualism vs cooperativism and other psychologic traits within its members as cultural norms.

Wheat farming allows for more nuclear household smaller stake models while rice paddy farming has to be more of a group effort.

Cross-cultural psychologists have mostly contrasted East Asia with the West. However, this study shows that there are major psychological differences within China. We propose that a history of farming rice makes cultures more interdependent, whereas farming wheat makes cultures more independent, and these agricultural legacies continue to affect people in the modern world. We tested 1162 Han Chinese participants in six sites and found that rice-growing southern China is more interdependent and holistic-thinking than the wheat-growing north. To control for confounds like climate, we tested people from neighboring counties along the rice-wheat border and found differences that were just as large. We also find that modernization and pathogen prevalence theories do not fit the data.
Human culture evolves and adapts to new circumstances and to how it changes the circumstances (the latter a self-imposed red queen race). Better worse ... "choice" ... is not the issue ... the construct that spreads the most tautologically is the one that is most fit; as another one becomes more fit for that niche, whatever its size, for whatever the reason, it will prevail.