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The Origins and Diffusion of Patrism in Saharasia, c.4000 BCE:

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  • The Origins and Diffusion of Patrism in Saharasia, c.4000 BCE:

    The Origins and Diffusion of Patrism in Saharasia, c.4000 BCE: Evidence for a Worldwide, Climate-Linked Geographical Pattern in Human Behavior*


    Global geographical patterns of repressive, painful, traumatic, and violent, armored, patrist behaviors and social institutions, which thwart maternal-infant and male-female bonds, were correlated and developed through a systematic analysis of anthropological data on 1170 subsistence-level cultures. When the behavior data were mapped, the hyperarid desert belt encompassing North Africa, the Near East, and Central Asia, which I call Saharasia, was found to possess the greatest areal extent of the most extreme patrist behaviors and social institutions on Earth. Regions farthest removed from Saharasia, in Oceania and the New World, were found to possess the most gentle, unarmored, matrist behaviors, which support and protect maternal-infant and male-female bonds. A systematic review of archaeological and historical materials suggests that patrism first developed in Saharasia after c.4000 BCE, the time of a major ecological transition from relatively wet grassland- forest conditions to arid desert conditions. Settlement and migration patterns of patrist peoples were traced, from their earliest homelands in Saharasia, to explain the later appearance of patrism in regions outside of Saharasia. Prior to the onset of dry conditions in Saharasia, evidence for matrism is widespread, but evidence for patrism is generally nonexistent. It is argued that matrism constitutes the earliest, original, and innate form of human behavior and social organization, while patrism, perpetuated by trauma-inducing social institutions, first developed among Homo Sapiens in Saharasia, under the pressures of severe desertification, famine, and forced migrations. The psychological insights of Wilhelm Reich provide an understanding of the mechanism by which patrist (armored, violent) behaviors become established and continue long after the initial trauma has passed.


    The present paper summarizes the evidence and conclusions of my own seven-year geographical study on the worldwide, regional variation in human behavior, and related socio-environmental factors, a study which constituted my doctoral dissertation (DeMeo 1985, 1986, 1987). In this research, I specifically focused upon a major complex of traumatic and repressive attitudes, behaviors, social customs and institutions which are correlated with violence and warfare. My study proceeded from clinical and cross-cultural observations on the biological needs of infants, children, and adolescents, the repressive and damaging effects that certain social institutions and classes of harsh natural environment have upon those needs, and the behavioral consequences of such repression and damage.

    The geographical approach to the origins of human behavior, as presented here, has allowed the reconstruction of a much clearer global picture of our most ancient cultural history than has heretofore been possible. The causal relationship between traumatic and repressive social institutions to destructive aggression and warfare has been verified and strengthened in my approach, which has confirmed the existence of an ancient, worldwide period of relatively peaceful social conditions, where warfare, male domination, and destructive aggression were either absent, or at extremely minimal levels. Moreover, it has become possible to pinpoint both the exact times and places on Earth where human culture first transformed from peaceful, democratic, egalitarian conditions, to violent, warlike, despotic conditions.

    These findings were made possible only by virtue of recent paleoclimatic and archaeological field studies (which revealed previously hidden social and environmental conditions), and by the development of large, global anthropological data bases composed of cultural data from hundreds to thousands of different cultures from around the world. The microcomputer, also a recent innovation, allowed easy access to such data, and the preparation within a few years of global behavior maps which otherwise would have taken a lifetime to prepare. My approach to these questions also constituted one of the first systematically derived, global geographical reviews of human behavior and social institutions, uncovering a previously unobserved, but clear-cut global pattern in human behavior. Before presenting the maps, which display in spatial form the core of my findings, some discussion of the variables of interest, and the theory behind the maps, is in order. [/b][/quote]

    Fascinating read as a study of Patriarchies vs. Matriarchies and the cultures they produced at the dawn of civilization and beyond. Matriarchies in general tended to practice human sacrifice. In fact one of my pet theories is that the patriarchal society arose to overthrow the female fertility human sacrifice cult.