Peoples of the Desert

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Information about Peoples of the Desert

Published on September 23, 2008

Author: PaulVMcDowell

Source: slideshare.net

Description

Gives a description of the !Kung San and a short comparison with the Shoshone

Assignment 2: Study Guide for Foraging Societies: Arid Climates Introduction Band level societies are often regarded as “simple,” but just how do you define the term? Of course neither the !Kung nor the Shoshone havecomplex states, or administrative structures, or even complicated lineages and clans. Yet each of those societies has its own complexity. All four have a detailed knowledge of their environment that would fill the Encyclopedia Britannica. Could you, for example, explain how you could tell what time of day a wildebeest or a gazelle (African antelope) paused at a grove of trees? Both the !Kung and the Shoshone lived in extremely dry climates, and as a result, had to move around a lot, seasonally and sometime sooner. Both lived in small groups. Both lack permanent leaders, and it is questionable whether they had leaders at all. What follows is a series of readings and videos that are derived from the fundamental characteristics of band level societies. First, you are to look at the common features of band level societies, then focus on the cultural attributes of the !Kung of Namibia and Botswana or those of the Shoshone of the Nevada basin. In the next module, you will look at one of two cultures of the Arctic regions, the Inuit (Eskimo) or the Naganasan of Siberia. Reading Assignments. Please read the following:  McDowell, Ch. 6, “Foraging or Hunting and Gathering,” pp. 56-59; Ch. 12, “Band Level of Integration, p. 124.  PowerPoint Presentation, “Band Level of Integration,” ETUDES Modules  PowerPoint Presentation, “Peoples of the Desert, ” ETUDES Modules  Johnson and Earle, “Case 1: The Shoshone of the Great Basin” pp. 58-65” OR  Johnson and Earle, “Case 2: The !Kung of the Kalahari Desert” Viewing Assignments. Please view any combination of the following videos or DVDs, depending on the questions you answer on either the !Kung or the Shoshone. If any link does not work, paste it onto your browser.  View “A Kalahari Family,” (You Tube): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=- VqhQPeEarE&feature=related Paste link to your browser if it doesn’t work.  View “Bushman” (You Tube; Dutch with English Subtitles) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-twT5P54Agg&feature=related  View “Shamanistic Hunting of the Kalahari Desert.” (You Tube) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=52k6FdApB94&feature=r lated; e  View “The Kalahari Bushmen: Botswana,”(You Tube): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ztzDHDiOSUY&feature= related  View “Power and People: San Bushmen of Kalahari’ (You Tube): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zeM05gUP7Z8&feature=related  View “Death of a Bushman” (You Tube; a murder mystery) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qn8KJgp13Xc .

 View “Native American Study of Mono Lake: Paiute Indians”. (You Tube) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jjmyP-kEBwQ&feature=related  View Obsidian Tools of Paiute of Owen Valley (You Tube) Part1, Link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=co17eotBNV8&feature=r lated; Part 2 e http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HAYOGqFGV50&feature=rhttp://www.yotub u e.com/watch?v=bnfU6Pch2SQ&f ature=relatedelated; Part 3 e http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=co17eotBNV8&feature=r lated e  View “Paiute Native American shaman Wovoka and the Ghost Dance” (You Tube) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cI0Jfdkq4z8&feature=r lated e Written Assignments; Answer the questions for either the !Kung or the Shoshone. Note that you have a choice of questions to answer for the section you have chosen. !Kung of the Kahalari Desert. Please answer Questions 1 and 2 plus two more questions from Questions 3 though 5 1. Describe the techniques of food getting, including hunting and gathering among the !Kung. Does this explain the food sharing among the !Kung? (10 points) 2. Explain why most of the !Kung diet comprises nut, roots, andother plant foods? (10 points) 3. Liebig’s Law of the Minimum sets limits to population by the scarcest resource. For the !Kung, explain what the scarcest resource is. How do they adapt to this condition? Are there other factors limiting the population and forcing a nomadic existence (Include in your answer the videos “Bushman” and “Shamanistic Hunting of the Kalahari Desert.” (20 points) 4. Explain the attempts of the Botswana government to expel the !Kung fromtheir ancestral lands. Is the resistance of the !Kung as portrayed in the video “The Kalahari Bushmen: Botswana” effective? What is the incentive for the Botswana government to expel the !Kung from their land? Your primary source will be the following You Tube presentat ons: “The Kalahari Bushmen: Botswana “ and i “Power and People: San Bushmen of Kalahari’ (20 points) 5. In the murder mystery, “Death of a Bushman,” describe the known facts of the murder and reasons why the investigation is taking so long. Does this sound familiar with our own society? (20 points). Written Assignments: Shoshone of the Nevada Basin. Please answer Questions 1 and 2 plus two more questions from Questions 3 though 6 1. Describe the techniques of food getting, including hunting and gathering among the Shoshone 2. Explain why most of the Shoshone diet comprises nut, roots, and other plant foods? (10 points) 3. Liebig’s Law of the Minimum sets limits to population by the scarcest resource. For the Shoshone, explain what the scarcest resource is. How do they adapt to this condition? Are there other factors limiting the population and forcing a nomadic existence? Does the communal hunt for rabbits mitigate the limit of the environment’s carrying capacity? (20points) 4. Describe the importance of obsidian in the hunting process among the Paiute, a peoples related to the Shoshone.(20 points)

5. Describe the Ghost Dance among the Shoshone, the conditions that led to it, and the outcome. (20 points) Discussion One of the issues of forager research is whether the Affluence Hypothesis (see p. 57 of the McDowell text) is really validated in the case study you have chosen: either the !Kung or the Shoshone. Will people really miss what they don’ have? Put in your two cents worth t into the Discussion and Private Messages section. Discuss other issues related to your study.

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