Elixir: A History of Water and Humans

Facts and information about water and the story of changing human relationships with water over the past 10,000 years.

3.90 (365 reviews)
Udemy
platform
English
language
Other Teaching & Academi
category
instructor
Elixir: A History of Water and Humans
14,359
students
4.5 hours
content
Nov 2021
last update
FREE
regular price
What you will learn
Description

A Faculty Project Course - Best Professors Teaching the World

Water. It caresses and comforts us, provides sustenance and refreshment, is something that humanity has cherished since the beginning of history, and means something different to everyone else. Yet the historical facts and information about water remains little known.

Water tells the story of changing human relationships with water over the past 10,000 years and tries to answer some basic questions:

  • How have human attitudes to water changed since people first began to manage their water supplies?
  • What major events in the past have defined our present relationship to water, not as something revered, but treated as an anonymous commodity?
  • Why are we now facing a global water crisis and what are prospects for the future?

This is the story of gravity and human ingenuity, of irrigation and aqueducts, of humble farming villages, ancient cities, and the rise and fall of civilizations. We draw on archaeology and hydrology, on anthropology and ancient oral traditions, on classical literature and Islamic agriculture—on a broad array of scientific inquiries in many languages and in all parts of the world.

Taking this course will make you look at water in an entirely new way.

Content
The Elixir of Life
Water, A Short History of Water and Humankind
Gravity and Beyond
Self Sustainability
The irrigators - Mesopotamia and Ancient Egypt
Irrigation Begins
The First Cities
Qanats and River Floods
Reservoirs, Rice, and Rivers - Asia
Waters that Purify
Rice and Reservoirs
Huang He and Yangze
The Water Maestros - Greece, Rome, Islam, and the Inca
The Power of the Aqueduct
Water Managers of Islam
A Triumph of Gravity
The Industrial Revolution and Beyond
Something That Is All Gone
The Industrial Revolution
Promiscuous Water Pumping
Concluding Note
Reviews
Shaun
1 October 2017
We need to stop thinking of water as an infinite commodity. The history of humankind's relationship with water may help change our attitude towards water.
Lee
30 April 2016
Long winded, bloviated claims, zero exposition. So the Maraket and Pequot (sp?) use irrigation; who in the history of the world doesn't? Their system of water distribution is governed by may rules; can you name even one? The ancient Chinese deveoped a sophisticated water buracracy; did it ever prevent a drought-caused famine? If so, may we learn their principles? Evidently, anthropology is not related to hydrology, history or civil engineering.
James
23 February 2016
Tedious speaker but one with an interesting amount of information. Find someone with a reasonable amount of verbal inflection would be nice.
Karsten
31 January 2016
I have read your books during my archaeology studies. I never had the pleasure to hear you in real. Your lecture about the water is fascinating and very enlightening. Water is one of the most important parameters for the whole human settlement history. However, I like also that you do not only talk about the past, but also make us keep in mind that water is still important and not something of certainty. I am going to have a look into your book this week. I had bought it before but was to busy to read it. With your lecture in mind I have maybe another view on it. Thanks for this entertaining lecture.
Meira
29 October 2015
I didn't expect the simple history of water to be so interesting. This is the best lecture course I've ever taken.
Kelly
16 September 2015
I learned a lot from his tour of humanity's relationship with water throughout history. It was very informative, insightful, and a pleasure to listen to. It would have been nice to have some more visual aids, but overall good quality. I appreciate him sharing this content for free.
Don
1 August 2015
It was a good story of Water Flow, from ancient times up until now. The Teacher is very talented, and has proven ideas.
Muhammad
7 October 2014
IT'S A WONDERFUL COURSE WHICH IS VERY PROGRESSIVELY DEVISED TO SKETCH THE EVOLUTION OF HUMAN HISTORY TOGETHER WITH THE WATER AND IRRIGATION FACILITIES.
Joe
3 August 2014
Great presentation of a topic I have found interesting for years. The pace of the lectures is steady and unhurried- perfect for a casual listening.
Shawn
20 March 2014
Wonderful to see such and in depth look at something some of us take for granted. The historical material is presented beautifully.
Keli
28 October 2013
We think we're so smart in modern times...may we progress on the shoulders of our ancestors! Buy this book and be bountiful!
Konstantinos
8 October 2013
This course shared much information about water history and it's relationship with humankind. The couse has a format of narrative style.
Yasnay
7 August 2013
I am delighted with the information received on water management in different world areas. The impact of water on social and geographical development... I strongly recommend it to everyone, no matter his or her profile.Thank you!
Lorraine
24 June 2013
This course opens your eye to how valuable and necessary access to clean water has been and continues to be for humanity's existence and progress. There were many things even I, a water resources engineer, did not know about. I hope this course serves to educate everyone on the precious resource that keeps us alive.
Robert
23 July 2012
First off, I am appreciative to Dr. Fagan for providing this course--for free, no less. To me, the history was fairly interesting but was presented in a manner that hold my interest, at times. Chapter 5, "The Industrial Revolution and Beyond" piqued my interest--specifically lectures 14 and 15. I guess, most importantly, I've come away thinking: "Now that you've taken the course... What are you going to do about it? How will you help conserve this precious resource?" For more about Brian Fagan, his books, etc visit: http://brianfagan.com/
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udemy ID
1/22/2012
course created date
6/15/2019
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