The !Kung San culture provides an interesting look into a dying way of life.
Before agriculture changed the way that people settled into areas, foraging
was an important means of survival. In spite of the rest of the worlds
advancements, the !Kung remained insulated and continued to practice a culture
that put an emphasis on cooperating with each other and the environment.
Because the !Kung are among the last known hunter-gathering societies, they
became a focus for anthropologists. As with most forms of science, there is
rarely a way to investigate a culture without somehow influencing it, no matter
how many safety protocols that are put in place. Compound on this the
increasing requirements that the African military are placing on land
management, the !Kung way of life is sadly disappearing.
While it's good for a culture to be allowed to evolve and take natural steps
forward, many cultures, like the !Kung, are forced to change before they are
ready, whether or not they are willing participants. An important resource is
being pushed into non-existence. In fact, given enough time, this cultural
report would more than likely be a historical cultural study.
As for using the major sociological perspectives to analyze the different
social institutions of the !Kung San, it is hard to use modern descriptions to
analyze a more primitive culture. Many of the social incarnations that we
take for granted do not (and can not) exist in a hunter-gathering society if
that society is going to survive for any amount of time. For the !Kung culture
to last as long as it has, they have had to rely heavily on each other and set
up a social structure that targets cooperation and group-accomplishments above