terça-feira, julho 15, 2008

Adaptar-se a mudanças que ocorrem lentamente (parte III)

Continuado daqui.
"Over the course of centuries, the Greenland Norse had built an intricate social and economic structure that proved more successful and durable... Their reliance on agriculture over hunting, their top-down political system, the central role of the Church, and trade with Europe had all served them well for generations. As a result, when conditions began to sour, the Greenland Norse responded by innovating within the constraints of their existing systems and structures." (é impossível ler este trecho final e não associar logo a este texto de João Miranda no DN de sábado passado "Medidinhas").
Because they could make these changes more rapidly than the rate at which various pressures were increasing, the Greenlad Norse stayed ahead of the need for fundamental restructuring. They had no way of knowing how adverse their conditions would become, what the adaptive limits of their culture and technology were, or when these limits would be reached. Innovating within their system was a perfectly reasonable thing to do. In fact, it worked for a very long time precisely because they were able to outrun nearly imperceptible environmental change.
Eventually, however, the limits of their ingenuity were reached and the stresses placed on their society by the slowly changing environment overwhelmed them.
In contrast, if everything had collapsed before their last seaworthy vessel had rotted, the outcome might have been very different... Instead, it was the slow erosion of their society over decades, if not centuries, that did them in. The glacial pace of change made the need for a more radical response nearly impossible to see, and ultimately impossible to implement."

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