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It is from Crash Course World History. It is at around 11 minute and 58 second. Here is the context:

Pierre Clastres argues that this so-called primitive Amerindian societies of South America were not in fact ancient societies who had failed to invent settled agriculture or state forms, but previously sedentary cultivators who abandoned agriculture and fixed villages in response to the effects of conquest.

It seems to me that the host means that the cultivators adapt villages in response to the effects, but I may be wrong because I have checked the word in a few dictionaries, and they don't give this definition. That is why it is unclear to me what the host really means by that.

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Pierre Clastres argues that these so-called primitive Amerindian societies of South America were not in fact ancient societies who had failed to invent settled agriculture or state forms, but previously sedentary cultivators who abandoned agriculture and fixed villages in response to the effects of conquest.

I fixed a typo, but break it down into ideas...

  • Pierre Clastres argues that - easy enough, someone has a new theory

  • these so-called primitive Amerindian societies of South America - these people

  • failed to invent settled agriculture or state forms - didn't learn to settle, remained nomadic

  • but previously sedentary cultivators - they had invented villages & farming

  • who abandoned agriculture and fixed villages - they gave up farming & no longer lived in the same place [fixed locations, ie villages]

  • in response to the effects of conquest. - they did this because the conquistadores were making this life difficult

So... There is an idea that instead of these people never inventing farming & village life, instead they gave up that life to stay one step ahead of their conquerors.

To fix is to repair, but fixed can mean either 'repaired' or in this case 'not moving', ie permanent homes, rather than a nomadic lifestyle.

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fixed
1. Firmly in position; stationary: a fixed dwelling.
(TFD)

These villages were stationary. These people did not move, unlike other groups that packed their belongings and relocated regularly. Clastres argues that these were previously sedentary cultivators who abandoned agriculture and stationary villages in response to (= because of, due to) the effects of conquest.

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You're mistaking what "fixed" is parallel with. You've interpreted the parallelism as "societies" that have both

  1. abandoned agriculture and
  2. fixed villages.

with "fixed" as a verb parallel to "abandoned." This is not what the speaker meant.

What the speaker meant was that "societies [...] abandoned" both

  1. agriculture and
  2. fixed villages.

Here, "villages" is a noun that together with "agriculture" serves as a compound object of "abandoned" and "fixed" is just an adjective describing "villages."

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Fix can mean to repair, but it can also mean to retain, hold, secure. A fixed village could be a repaired village, but it can also be a village that does not move.

In this instance, I believe the intention is to describe the transition from settled people to those who are nomadic. The "effects of conquest" imply war.

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