Hendry Ch: 12
Environment: surrounding conditions and circumstances that influence the life of a
1) Hunter-gathers: i.e. South Africa
Collect food from their immediate environment and they pick or catch only as much as
they could eat at one time to avoid problems of storage or transport.
Nomadic: people who move around to make a living rather than settling in one place.
Little role specialization.
Division of labour is made along the lines of age and gender. The healthy and capable
collect for the very young and the very old. Also, men hunt, while women gather.
Marshall Sahlins described hunter-gathers as the ‘original affluent society’. Hunters and
gatherers are forced to have an objectively low standard of living. They work hard.
However, they are satisfied with what they have and they do not consider themselves as
poor. If people want no more than their food, and that is available, then they have all they
desire. They have not been corrupted by the addictive and competitive traps of property
ownership and capitalism.
2) Pastoralists: i.e. Sarakatsani
People who live off the produce of herds of cattle, sheep, goats, etc.
They may be nomadic and transhumant: moving between fixed locations. They need to
move because they need to find fresh grazing for their animals.
Have mobile homes called yurts.
Some pastoralists satisfy almost all their requirements –food, shelter, clothes, and fuel.
They may also create semi-permanent relationships of exchange with their neighbors. I.e.
giving cheese to secure grazing rights.
Sarakatsani are deeply concerned about three things: sheep, children, and honour.
Require a more sedentary lifestyle, and a longer term investment in the land, which could
then support larger populations.