The Hunters; Scarce Resources in the Kalahari

1696 words 7 pages
The !Kung bushmen of the Kalahari Desert in Southern Africa are one of the few bands of hunter-gatherers left in the world. They survive by foraging for their meals while traveling, never settling in one specific area. Hunting and gathering was the primary mode of survival until about ten thousand years ago. Anthropologists have made assumptions about the hunting and gathering lifestyle of current populations because it seems like a precarious method of living. Moreover, the Kalahari area where the !Kung live in was perceived to be baron because it is a desert. However, a study done over a period of years beginning in 1960 led by Richard Lee disproved the common misconception of the life of these foragers, proving that they were not …show more content…

There is never a shortage of food for the !Kung, they have their pick of what types of vegetation they wish to consume, partially based on the season, and they occasionally eat meat. The people do not have to scour for food and settle for whatever they can find, as anthropologists thought. There is actually an assorted variety of foods the !Kung people choose from. And not every type of edible food is consumed. The people are selective in the types of food they want to eat, and sometimes settle for certain unpopular foods due to reasons such as drought. There is always food for the people to consume, but during certain times of year, the bush people have to travel farther to get to it. There is a shorter commute in the summer while in the spring, there is much more distance that needs to be covered to get food. The mongogo nut is a staple in the diet of these people because of its good nutritional value. This nut is attributed to around 50 percent of their diet of vegetation based on weight. This is a staple to the bush people, compared to rice or corn of other societies. The nut is hardy and drought resistant so it is always abundant throughout the year, and only of a fraction of it is actually cultivated. This is because of how selective the !Kung people are with the types of food they consume. The more favorable fruits are usually consumed