ANTH 2100 Lesson 4

ANTH 2100 Lesson 4 - Tribal Characteristics Tribes are more...

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Tribal Characteristics Tribes are more complex forms of bands. (In this course, we are treating both as similar types of groups). Tribes develop when the environment is able to support larger populations, and life becomes more complex, requiring more complex strategies for being successful. * Horticulture and herding. Usually, tribes practice horticulture (small scale crop growing) and herding of animals. Gathering and hunting is also practiced. * More densely populated. Much more dense population, sometimes more than 100,000. * Less nomadism. Less migration. Usually seasonal when it occurs. * More complex tools and technology emerge. * Extended family. The extended family of grandparents and aunts and uncles are recognized. * Patrilineal descent pattern. Descent is reckoned through the father primarily. There are some matrilineal tribal units. men on camels * Primogeniture inheritance system. This is a common system in which all inheritance goes to the oldest son. * Exogamous marriage patterns. Exogamy refers to marrying someone from another group. The other groups are clans or other groups with which your clan has relations. * Polygyny--Practice of having more than one wife. Polygyny is the preferred form of marriage among tribal peoples. Monogamy is also practiced, as well as polyandry (women having more than one husband). Polyandry is very infrequent and usually involves a woman marrying several brothers. Polygyny makes sense in tribal societies, where it allows for the expansion of wealth and the need for many children to expand the wealth. This is illustrated in the film A Wife Among Wives. * Patriarchal (male) decision-making. Patriarchies are probably related to the physical superiority of males, and most likely related to warfare in which the primary participants are male. * Ordeals and formal mediation. Tribes often develop more formal ways of dealing with conflict, such as the use of ordeals. An example of an ordeal is the touching of the accused with a red-hot knife. If the person blisters, he is guilty. This is demonstrated in the film Bisha. * Animistic religion--witchcraft and sorcery. Religion becomes somewhat more
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ANTH 2100 Lesson 4 - Tribal Characteristics Tribes are more...

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