General Question

ilvorangeiceblocks's avatar

Which ethnicity of people in the past or present do you believe to have been the most successful?

Asked by ilvorangeiceblocks (865points) February 18th, 2011

I mean, the Romans conquered half of Europe and pretty much began the process of making the ‘barbarians’ civilised. But the Chinese invented things like exams, had intense armies and of course, they had fireworks which make our Novembers that much more exciting. They are now expected by most to be in charge of the world by next century, but does this mean they’ve been the most successful?
Maybe not ethnicity, but which culture has been the most successful? The modern western culture has basically become the main culture in the world. But there are also other predominant cultures.

What do you think?

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6 Answers

global_nomad's avatar

I think the Ottoman Empire was extremely successful, at least up until WWI when they became known as “the sick man” of Europe. Their empire lasted from 1299–1923, and as you can tell that is a freaking long time. At the empire’s pinnacle under Suleiman the Magnificent in around 1550, the empire covered three continents and stretched from Vienna in the North to Iran in the East and to North Africa in the South & West. Besides acquiring a large portion of land mass, many social, cultural, and scientific advancements were made within the Ottoman Empire. In fact, many philosophical arguments and scientific & mathematic discoveries can be attributed to great Arab thinkers.

flutherother's avatar

Every culture thinks it is the most successful, that is why it is the way it is. We tend to think ours is the most enlightened, most liberal, most affluent and most successful of all time. All we really have is a lot of stuff, material stuff, cultural stuff, intellectual stuff and artistic stuff.

Sometimes less is more and cultures like the Australian Aborigines that have almost nothing continued for tens of thousands of years. They were so successful they probably didn’t even think they were. I hope our way of life could last as long but the big difference is the Aborigine culture was stable and in harmony with the natural world and ours is not.


The Chinese, past and present.

tranquilsea's avatar

I agree with @MRSHINYSHOES . China has been the most amazing for a long, long time.

anartist's avatar

The Jewish people, despite adversity and relatively small numbers have contributed enormously to any culture of which they became a part.

flutherother's avatar

I am an admirer of Chinese culture. I like Chinese philosophy and Chinese poetry in particular. Chinese culture grew out of its own roots and didn’t develop out of earlier destroyed civilizations the way western thought did. And so it is mild and pure and harmonious. And look at Chinese writing. Isn’t it beautiful? I don’t understand a word of it however.

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