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Does anyone buy this theory of Agriculture?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 23, 2013 at 3:53 PM

For shits n gigs, I'm watching 'How Beer Saved the World' and although filled with shaky claims IMO, I think their theory on the origin of agriculture has some merit. After all, why else go through tons of processing in order to make grains edible? They taste like crap by themselves, but ferment them, and you have beer (albeit at first, no hoppy taste). I think it's a plausible theory?

Acb677529a6974737bf1905ccfc7f748

(120)

on August 24, 2013
at 01:59 AM

After wiping out the megafauna, Paleo man went looking for something else to eat, so beginning the agricultural neolithic era, http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/1830397?uid=3739832&uid=2129&uid=2&uid=70&uid=4&uid=3739256&sid=21102547111781 http://www.actionbioscience.org/newfrontiers/eldredge2.html http://ideas.repec.org/p/ner/tilbur/urnnbnnlui12-167611.html

489706f5480edccc9f01130582f7f296

(233)

on August 23, 2013
at 04:08 PM

They claim that we accidentally discovered beer in our last days of hunting-gathering by letting the grains sit in pots for too long. They fermented, and we got our first high dose of alcohol, driving us to domesticate barley and settle. The rest is what we all know of society. Personally, I think this is a theory by a bunch of drunks validating their desire to get drunk on beer, but heck, beer tastes great...freakin gluten...

C2450eb7fa11b37473599caf93b461ef

(3225)

on August 23, 2013
at 04:03 PM

Perhaps I'm not reading this right, but I don't get what the theory actually is? Can you tell us more about the movie?

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2 Answers

2
3d58b5fb4f9780e2f47d4dcc53338a5a

(2771)

on August 23, 2013
at 06:35 PM

It actually has some merit. I think I read that the earliest piece of writing is a recipe for beer from the ancient Sumerians. The Egyptians paid a lot of the pyramid builders in beer as well. For a long time, beer was a source of liquid that wasn't tainted, since settling down somewhere meant, uh, waste buildup and foul water supply. In that sense, beer and grain helped people settle in one place so they can begin the agricultural neolithic era.

This, of course, is very narrow in the sense that this only considers one branch of humanity that spreads out from the middle east to the Western world. This doesn't take into consideration the far East and Mesoamericans who have very low tolerance for alcohol, but still farm.

If this were Mythbusters, I'd call it "Plausible."

Acb677529a6974737bf1905ccfc7f748

(120)

on August 24, 2013
at 01:59 AM

After wiping out the megafauna, Paleo man went looking for something else to eat, so beginning the agricultural neolithic era, http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/1830397?uid=3739832&uid=2129&uid=2&uid=70&uid=4&uid=3739256&sid=21102547111781 http://www.actionbioscience.org/newfrontiers/eldredge2.html http://ideas.repec.org/p/ner/tilbur/urnnbnnlui12-167611.html

0
Eb3c83c339e81d0bd6e1b6b97148af65

on August 23, 2013
at 07:03 PM

Yes, thick beer was used as a food source and small beer (1% alcohol content) was used as an alternative to water because the alcohol killed the germs.

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