Lecture 8 2/4/2013 10:28:00 AM
Do hunter gatherer bands live in a precarious way, always looking
for food in a continuous starvation state?
FOCUS MORE ON CHAPTER 1 2 3 and 7 FOR TEST AND THE THEE FIRST
CHAPTERS OF ETHNOGROPHY
NAMES OF ANTHROPOLOGISTS ARE IMPORTANT
“The original affluent society”:
in hunter gatherer bands, only 20 hours of work a week is
necessary to gather enough food.
They are our original wealthy society.
Instead of poor…
o They are societies of leisure: they have a lot of free time
to spend with their kin..
o They are well nourished, having a balanced diet: they
can be picky about what they chose to eat.
Sexual division of labour:
o Women gather (70% of the diet)
o Men hunt (30% of the diet).
Why from our western point of view do we consider them poor?
How do we define wealth?
They are two different was of creating wealth:
o By producing more
o By desiring less.
Need is a vague concept…
We can satisfy the need of hunger: by eating rice and beans or
steak and shrimps
In the western world: we valorize quantity and diversity Among the !Kung San: having enough to satisfy hunger and
sharing with kin.
Are material possessions a universal measure of wealth and
Are not a universal measure of wealth and poverty.
To be rich means to be well integrated in a community. To be poor
is to be isolated.
Not all societies set the same economical priorities
Different societies use different principles to organize their
Economic processes cannot be considered apart from the cultural
institutions in which they are embedded.
Obtaining the most possible at smallest possible cost.
Relatively recent cultural invention
Not all societies follow this system.
Making the capitalist system the prototype of human rationality is
ethnocentric and reduction