Civilizations Have Often Resulted in Dramatic Changes Essay

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civilizations have often resulted in dramatic changes to both sides. Peaceful encounters bring transfers to new goods, new technologies and new ideas, while encounters built on conflict can change outlooks, governments and ways of life. A violent culture clash occurred with the Crusades, while a more peaceful meeting of the cultures occurred with traders from Europe (especially Venetians) heading eastward to Asia. These two encounters between civilizations would lead to much of what we see in the geopolitical world today. We have conflict in the Middle East between the Arab world and the Western world. We also see global trade as a major driving force in the world. This trade also would eventually lead to the age of exploration and mass colonization.

The rise of Islam and the response of Christian Europe during the Crusades not only characterized its era, being one of the most important events of the time, but it has characterized relations between these two parts of the world to this day. When Islam rose on the Arabian Peninsula, few in Europe at the time would have given it any notice. Both cultures were relatively backward compared with the sophisticated Roman culture of a few centuries before. As Islam grew, it spread into what is now Israel and Palestine, the Seljuk Turks taking the area over from Constantinople.
Christians in Europe rose up against this new religion taking their holiest sites.

There were two ways in which the Crusades shaped cultural exchange and conflict. The Crusaders traveled from northern and western Europe to the Middle East. They were able in doing so to facilitate the transfer of goods and ideas throughout medieval Europe in the course of their movements. This was a key form of exchange at a time when most Europeans did not engage in long-distance travel. More important was the Crusades themselves. When the Turks cut off Christian access to Jerusalem and the holy sites like Bethlehem, this was a provocation to the Catholic Church. That provocation escalated into full-blown conflict with the Crusades.

Those conflicts essentially raised barriers between Christian Europeans and Muslims that still exist today. In world affairs, it is not uncommon to see these two cultural groups disagree with each other. The region today, be it Israel or Palestinian territory, remains the site of conflict between Christians and Muslims, with the west, Arabs and Iranians engaged in a proxy conflict. There have been few moments of true peace in the region, and the Crusades were the first major meeting of the two civilizations to define that….....

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