StudyBoss ยป The Bushmen of the Kalahari Desert

The Bushmen of the Kalahari Desert

The Bushmen of the Kalahari Desert live in a culture much different from ours. They live with no crime, no law, and no police. In their culture nothing is bad nor evil and they are relatively gentle people. They have no sense of ownership and their values are sharing and kindness to all. The Bushmen live by no time and go by no calendars. They mainly live in small groups and in complete isolation. They are unaware of any American history or technology. They are unaware of any other cultures or subcultures. Anyone who is clothed and is not a Bushman is believed to be a god.

It is believed that there is a point where the earth ends, therefore they have no knowledge of geography nor science. The Bushmen are unaware that only 600 miles south of their home lies a vast city. Their language consists mainly of grunts and clicking sounds. The Bushmen’s material culture does not include automobiles or any mechanical things. It was thought that a jeep was a very noisy animal with round legs. One of their norms is to first tranquilize an animal, and then explain to this animal that their family needs food, and that it was a must to kill the animal.

Their culture traits consist of no forks, spoons, nor knives, but cook everything by fire and eat with their hands. In the Kalahari there is a period of no rainfall for nine months, yet the Bushmen survive on water from roots and plants. When there is a discovery of a coke bottle, cultural diffusion begins. The Bushmen think the bottle is a gift from the gods. They begin to feel greed and envy. Their values of sharing and kindness start to deteriorate. Feelings never felt before begin to arise. Violence, anger, and hate develop from the coke bottle.

Cultural traits and patterns start to change by using the coke bottle. The Bushmen now use the bottle to flatten animal skins, where before they used rocks and sticks. They create new sounds and symbols from the bottle. Their entire culture is beginning to change right before them. The Bushmen notice the development of hate and violence and decide to bury the bottle. With the bottle no longer present, the Bushmen return to a society of kindness and friendship. However, when the bottle is found again, the Bushmen’s values begin to deteriorate again.

They call the bottle “the evil thing” and decide it does not belong on the earth. One Bushman named Xi decides that he will walk and throw the bottle off the end of the earth. In his journey he comes across a schoolteacher whom he believes to be a god. He tries to give back the bottle to the god, but of course the schoolteacher has no knowledge of the Bushmen’s language. At one time the bottle is stolen by a monkey and Xi warns him that the bottle will bring hate and violence. The Bushmen of the Kalahari live in a culture much simpler than ours.

They experience less pleasures and excitements but in return are free from our laws and negativesanctions. They are unaware of any of our technology but this does not trouble them. They are without social movement or invention but still continue to live on. Their physical environment is very limited compared to ours, but this does not bother them. I have come to the conclusion that discovery and invention helps progress human life as a whole, but also brings with it hate, violence, and all other negative parts of life.

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