The influence of schooling and relocation on the G/ui pupil companionship

From the 1980s the Central San (G/ui and G//ana) hunter-gatherers of the Central Kalahari Game Reserve, Botswana, settled around Xade. This shortened the distance between camps. It meant children were able to visit other camps, while schooling gave them the chance to meet many other children, including nonrelatives. In 1997, the G/ui were forced to move to New Xade. Population density in the new settlement was much higher than in Xade, and the pattern of residence was fundamentally different from that of the traditional G/ui and G//ana habitational style. Based on field research at Xade and New Xade in 1997-1998, the author investigates San children’s companionship before, during and after relocation, focusing on patterns in play group size and composition. Traditionally, San children played only with relatives. Nowadays, however, especially the elder pupils (aged 13 to 14) often play with schoolmates who are not kin. The composition of elder pupils’ play groups remained unchanged before, during, and after relocation, although group size grew somewhat during relocation. The composition of younger pupils’ (aged 10) play groups shifted but returned mainly to kin. Only during the period of relocation were younger pupils’ play groups large, and did they include nonrelatives as often as those of the elder pupils. Bibliogr., notes, sum.

Title: The influence of schooling and relocation on the G/ui pupil companionship
Author: Akiyama, Hiroyuki
Year: 2001
Periodical: African Study Monographs: Supplementary Issue
Issue: 26
Pages: 197-208
Language: English
Geographic term: Botswana
External link: http://repository.kulib.kyoto-u.ac.jp/dspace/bitstream/2433/68399/1/ASM_S_26_197.pdf
Abstract: From the 1980s the Central San (G/ui and G//ana) hunter-gatherers of the Central Kalahari Game Reserve, Botswana, settled around Xade. This shortened the distance between camps. It meant children were able to visit other camps, while schooling gave them the chance to meet many other children, including nonrelatives. In 1997, the G/ui were forced to move to New Xade. Population density in the new settlement was much higher than in Xade, and the pattern of residence was fundamentally different from that of the traditional G/ui and G//ana habitational style. Based on field research at Xade and New Xade in 1997-1998, the author investigates San children’s companionship before, during and after relocation, focusing on patterns in play group size and composition. Traditionally, San children played only with relatives. Nowadays, however, especially the elder pupils (aged 13 to 14) often play with schoolmates who are not kin. The composition of elder pupils’ play groups remained unchanged before, during, and after relocation, although group size grew somewhat during relocation. The composition of younger pupils’ (aged 10) play groups shifted but returned mainly to kin. Only during the period of relocation were younger pupils’ play groups large, and did they include nonrelatives as often as those of the elder pupils. Bibliogr., notes, sum.