This week, we have learned about the Neolithic culture, emergence of agriculture, and the rise of the states. The Neolithic Period lasted from 10,000 to 2,000 BC, and this period was a time of rapid cultural development which gave to the emergence of agriculture and rise of the states. First, the emergence of agriculture, to me, is such a huge step in humanity progressing as a species. This shows that past hominids had the mental capacity to learn what agriculture is, and to start using it to their advantage. Using tools and making these tools more advanced over time is one thing, but then you’re relying on factors that can’t be controlled to be able to survive. Hominids before this time had to follow the movement of food or had to search for food that might not be there. Being able to grow plants and actually farm them is a big way to make sure you have the necessities to survive. With agriculture, these hominids were able to stay in one place, grow food, and thrive. Not having to worry about where your next meal is coming from, or if you will ever find one, is a big step in the right direction. Saying that, I really do believe that the emergence of agriculture really did lead to the rise of the states. Hunting and gathering are one thing, but they are both based on chance. Chance is not something you need when you want to survive. Having the ability to grow plants and animals’ changes everything. Not only do these hominids have plants and animals that are suited for domestication and their climate, they now have the opportunity to settle down in one place- both of these free up a lot of time that wasn’t available to them before. When food is grown, trade is also able to take place, creating a society based on the trading of goods. This movement into stable communities, combined with agriculture and trading lead to the emergence of the states, because some kind of organization had to be set in place to regulate what was happening in the world at that time. To prove that all this happened, archaeological evidence is there for us. In general, there are three different types of categories that show how agriculture emerged. These categories are animal remains, types of tools, and plant fossils. Animal remains, and plant fossils were found in discovered hominid agriculture communities, showing that these people were able to do more than just hunt and gather. Then because agriculture, trade, and the states gave people free time they didn’t have before, farmers were able to make specialized tools that would help them make their farms more efficient. The tools include grinding stones and larger shovels. This alone shows another shift in society because material tools- such as shovels and grinders- were of high value to these people. These three types of evidence show that hominids at this time were no longer just hunters and gatherers, but it shows that they shifted towards a new society filled with agriculture, trade, and new stable communities as states.