Bill Schindler is an anthropology professor at Washington College in Maryland. In his class Experimental Archaeology and Primitive Technology, students learn the way things were done when you didn't have someone else specializing in doing it for others. Things like butchering animals, making their own clothing and dishes, and cooking -using tools they make themselves.
The skills prehistoric peoples depended on seem exotic to today’s college students, who Schindler says arrive on campus each year with less and less of the sort of practical experience that he emphasizes in his class. He tells of the time he asked some students to crack eggs and separate the yolks from the whites. He returned to the kitchen 10 minutes later to find that not a single egg had been cracked. “I asked them if the problem was that nobody had ever told them how to separate the yolk from the whites, and received blank stares in return,” he recalled. “After a minute of silence, one of them said, ‘I’ve never cracked an egg.’ I was floored—how do you even make it to 19 without cracking an egg?”
Schindler wants us to know that "primitive" people were not less intelligent than we are, they were just focused on different things. In fact, they may have even been smarter. After all, they did not have weapons that could destroy millions, nor did they have factories that polluted the planet. And Schindler lives his life using the ancient skills he teaches in class. Read about Schindler and his views on ancient societies at the Atlantic. -via TYWKIWDBI
(Image credit: John Cuneo)