Chapter 5 in the textbook focuses on the four major strategies for getting food: foraging, horticulture, pastoralism, and agriculture. Each of these four strategies possesses important characteristics. These strategies have also affected other aspects of human societies such as technology, settlement patterns, family life and religion. In the following essay I will be writing in depth about the four major strategies.
The first strategy I will focus on is foraging. Foraging is sometimes called â€œhunting and gathering.â€ Foraging involves the collection of wild plants and hunting animals for food. Men were usually assigned the role of hunting, while women were sent out to collect things like berries, nuts, seeds, flowers, and fruit. Technology plays an important part in foraging as well. Before certain wild plants are eaten, lab tests are done to make sure the food is safe. Most foragers are nomads. They move with the availability of food and water. Foragers are not food producers so they do not contribute to any economic system. They do however live by a system of reciprocity. This is a way by which people give and receive items of value. Foragers live in groups called bands. The bands practice reciprocity between one another. Foragers can get everything they need from one another. This system is almost like â€œtrading.â€ Foragers also share responsibilities and have excellent survival skills.
The next strategy I will explain is horticulture. The change from foraging to horticulture was a gradual process. Horticulture uses simple crop production. No fertilizers or irrigation are used. Therefore horticulture must take place in areas where there is a great amount of rainfall. Horticulture can also take place on land where flooding occurs. Technology is important to horticulturalists. They need to understand plant cycles, weather conditions and how to store extra seeds for the next season.