The two civilizations were isolated for years, with this they faced many challenges. They faced environmental challenges such as polar

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1 The two civilizations were isolated for years, with this they faced many challenges. They faced environmental challenges such as polar extremes, high mountain ranges, deserts, and prairies. These were difficult to work with and these factors make it hard to find food. But they also had woodlands and tropical rain forests which provided a lot of food like wild game and plants. It also affected their social lives, and there was very little trade between the two regions (the only ones around.) They also needed many people. They developed irrigation and drainage systems which caused many people to work. Both civilizations also needed housing for the people and housing for the upper class and elite.

2 In Olmec culture, fine art was used to distinguish rulers and help them keep power. The houses of the elite were decorated with finely crafted objects and art to separate them from commoners who lived in houses made of sticks and mud. Also, large stone heads were crafted to represent the elites authority, some reaching 11 feet tall. Each head was suggestive to individual personality and they were located near urban centers suggesting that each represented an individual elite or person. That is why art represented power and helped rulers keep their power.

3 Natural Environment influenced their cultural development in a couple of ways. First the challenges of jungles and arid costal plains caused specialized production based on region. Also, living on the coast made it possible for them to trade fish and decorative shells. They also domesticated the Llama. These are only a couple of ways the Natural Environment played an important role is the development of their culture.

4 The focus of the Olmec religion is around agriculture. Since most people were farmers, shamans and healers provided practical advice about the periodic rains essential to agricultural life. Religion helped keep the rulers in control by convincing people that he is associated with the goods. They did this through bloodletting and human sacrifice. Their gods took animal form in particular the Jaguar

5 They were the only domesticated animals that were able to carry heavy loads. They were very important for transporting goods in the Andean region and for expanding trade. They also provided meat and wool for the people.

6 The creation of metallurgy inn the Chavin culture is similar to China and Mesopotamia because of it represented advances in technology, such as the bronze making processes of Shang China and of Mesopotamia. It shows that they had developed their cultures to the point that they could spend time making beautiful decorations or useful tools, and not having to worry about how to get food. Metal development also shows an increase in trade efficiency and use, as metal workers needed materials from different places, and could ship their goods elsewhere. Metals were also used in religious ceremonies, as with the Shang s bronze vessels, the Chavin used their metals in sculptures and other things, which in turn added to the reputation and prestige of their culture. Metal/metallurgy represents advances in technology in early civilizations. Since there materials were more durable and more interesting looking than stone, people revered them in almost a god-like way. They used these metals in religious ceremonies and had spiritual value. Metals, especially alloys like bronze, were more durable than stone which then increased fighting power and efficiency. Overall, metal making was important to early civilizations.

7 The different geological challenges that he Olmec civilization faced compared to other early civilizations are responsible for how they progresses economically and expanded. The geologic feature that had the largest impact on the Olmec civilization was the fact that it was not a river valley civilization. Therefore they did not depend on the flooding of rivers to bring fertile soil to their farmlands. Another differing detail that the Olmec people had was that their region was heavily active geologically. As a result from this activity, there were frequent earthquakes and volcanoes. Another outcome of this seismic activity are the mountains that break the region into may natural environments. These segregations of the environments made it so that different tribes of the Olmec had to live differently. For example, some tribes may have lived by the gulf of Mexico instead of farming for their food they would instead create rafts to go out and fish, while tribes that lived inland would have to farm and hunt for food. In comparison to the Olmec, all the river valley s environments were the same and there were not as many dramatic differences between the regions.

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