Sunday, February 28, 2010

Vanishing Cultures: Bushmen Of The Kalahari

Bushmen in Deception Valley, Botswana demonstr...Image via Wikipedia

The Bushmen on a hunt

The Bushmen on a hunt

Bushmen Rock Art

The indigenous people of southern Africa, whose territory spans most areas of South Africa, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Mozambique, Swaziland, Botswana, Namibia, and Angola, are variously referred to as Bushmen, San, Sho, Basarwa, Kung, or Khwe. These people were traditionally hunter-gatherers, part of the Khoisan group and are related to the traditionally pastoral Khoikhoi. Starting in the 1950s, through the 1990s, they switched to farming as a result of government-mandated modernization programs as well as the increased risks of a hunting and gathering lifestyle in the face of technological development.
The Bushmen have provided a wealth of information for the fields of anthropology and genetics, even as their lifestyles change. The broad study of African genetic diversity headed by Sarah Tishkoff found the San people had the greatest genetic diversity among the 113 distinct populations sampled, making them one of 14 "ancestral population clusters".[1] and be considered the most basal branch of the phylogenetic tree comprised of all living humans, ie its divergence node with other humans is the deepest ancestral state that can ever be reconstructed using DNA from living humans.

Lead article photo

Bushmen hunters examine animal tracks in the Kalahari game reserve. Photograph: Roger De La Harpe/Corbis

The San people, more commonly known as Bushmen, are believed to be the earliest inhabitants of southern Africa. They have lived for 80,000 years as hunter-gatherers in the Kalahari Desert, and are well-known for their expert survival skills in a harsh environment. Their unique clicking languages and their astonishing method of healing through trance dancing have made them a source of worldwide fascination. But these peaceful people are not immune from the problems of modern society, and have faced oppression and eviction from their homelands for years.
Vanishing Cultures: Bushmen of the Kalahari” visits the troubled San community whose once thriving culture is now facing extinction. This one-hour documentary takes a never-before-seen look at the fascinating history, the brutal struggles, and the seemingly impossible challenges of the Bushmen of the Kalahari.

heres the link, very good watch.
Vanishing Cultures: Bushmen Of The Kalahari

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