The Effects of a Changing Environment on the Ju/'hoansi Lifestyle

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The way of the Ju/‘hoansi life has changed dramatically in many ways throughout the years. However, it is still possible to reflect upon their original way of life and compare it with their present state of living. Most of the changes occurred due to environmental, economical, developmental, social and cultural changes. All of which play a vital role in determining a Ju’s way of life. Although the land of the Dobe and !Kangwa have developed and changed in recent years, there are still some remnants of how the environment used to be. A significant shift in social and cultural aspects of the Ju/‘hoansi life can be observed in the new environment. However, some important aspects of their culture and belief system are still reflected in their …show more content…
Although material goods have become readily available in the lands of Dobe and !Kangwa, the role of hxaro exchanges in circulating goods has only decreased slightly. About 50% of goods are still received through hxaro exchanges(Anthropology and the Human Condition 2010), therefore the maintenance of social relations through gift exchanges are still held in high regards.

In the Dobe area, there were two forms of economic linkage between tribes-the barter system and the mafisa system. The barter system involved the trading of desert goods for manufactured goods while the mafisa system was a loan cattle labour exchange system which involved a well-to-do Tswana farming out cattle to others such as the San to be maintained. (Solway and Lee, 293) The San client maintained the herd on behalf of the Tswana patron, who retained ownership of the beasts.(Solway and Lee, 293) In return San could consume all the milk the animal produced and the meat of any animal that have died of natural causes, including predation.(Solway and Lee, 293) A tally was made of any beasts lost and all animals will be accounted for when the patron made a periodic visit. (Solway and Lee, 293)

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