ABSTRACT

We started this book by discussing, in Chapter 1, the reasons why the Dobe !Kung are of more than ordinary interest to scientists and why it is worthwhile to pursue demographic studies of them despite handicaps such as their inability to provide information on their ages and the small total numbers available for study. The main reason, we argued there, is that the !Kung provide an “ethnographic analogy” for increasing our understanding of the very long, and evolution-arily crucial, hunting and gathering stage of human adaptation. Having described the demographic processes of the Dobe !Kung that have been observed, it is appropriate to go on to consider explicitly what these parameters imply for studies of human evolution.