The Kung, Shoshone, and Mbuti Tribes: Hunting and Gathering Societies As in many societies different groups of people are connected by similar traits. People of hunting and gathering societies also share similar qualities. Although the Kung, Shoshone, and Mbuti live in unique environments they still share numerous common characteristics because of there life styles. The Kung San and Shoshone make critical decisions in similar ways.
The people of the Shoshone and Kung are much like a modern community in that they live together but for the most part live separate lives. They come together to hunt, like we to work, but when the hunt is over they get paid, in the form of meat, and go home to their families. If they should choose to any group may leave the whole at anytime. The Mbuti choose to live as a whole. They act a sone family. All decisions are made by the community as a whole.
If the group cannot reach consensus on a problem then the group may split for that time but will rejoin once the projects are completed. Unlike the Kung and Shoshone the Mbuti stay together, for the most part, throughout the year and do not diffuse when supplies become more plentiful. The two most important things a person needs is food and water. Many different foods are consumed by the Mbuti. There diet consists of meats, fruits, berries, roots, fungus and insects.
The Mbuti's food supply is always plentiful, this is due to the habitat they live in and the small number of people living off of any given area. The Shoshone on the other hand live more like a scavengers because of their environment. Meat is rare, they tend to live off the plant life in the forest. A large portion of the Shoshone's diet is plant life. The Kung have a fairly balanced diet of plants and animals but water is a limited resource. For the Kung the reason for moving is to stay where the water is.
In the dry season the Kung will all live in close quarters near the permanent water holes. But as the rainy season comes they will be able to spread throughout the region. Foraging societies share three major traits. All of these societies share the work that must be done in the camp. They all live in camps, meaning they never stay in an area for an extended amount of time. The Kung come back to the same places but they don't stay there for very long periods of time.
Finally, the people of these groups do not echo technologically driven societies, rather they depend upon the land and it's many attributes. Although these societies have many differences they are connected by a common trait. They are able to live off of themselves and the land. They do not need to trade with anyone for what they need. Foraging societies are the only people alive that are truly independent.