5 Important Facts about the San People (Bushmen)

Today, the Bushmen are mainly confined in the barren inhospitable environment of the desert of Kalahari (Namibia, Botswana, and Angola) and adjacent sub-tropical grasslands of South-West Africa. The Namibia desert has virtually no rainfall.

The desert of Kalahari has 102-254 mm (4-10 inches) of rainfall in a year. Moving towards north (towards the equator) the region becomes more wet which contains one of Africa’s most varied wildlife reserves. The famous Etosha National Park is also situated in this region.

The archaeological and historical evidences show that the Bushmen groups have extended formerly far north and eastwards into Basutoland, Natal and Zimbabwe (southern Rhodesia).

In appearance, the Bushmen show many points of resemblance to the Negritoes. They are short statured (5 feet 4 inches), but they do not have the projecting mouth, thick averted lips, and wide open eyes, characteristics of both Negroes and Negritoes.

1. Territory:

The territory in which the Bushmen live is a great plateau, about 2,000 metres above the sea level, with massive ranges in the east. Its climate is sub-tropical, and except in the extreme south-west it is a land of summer rains. The rainfall is abundant in the eastern half of the great plateau.

The abundance of rainfall has resulted into dense forests on the eastern moun­tains and coastlands, fading westward into expanses of tall grass, thorny scrub and ultimately bare sandy and stony deserts. Beyond the forests, rainfall is everywhere uncertain, and this uncertainty reaches the maxi­mum in the Kalahari and Namibia desert coast. The desert of Kalahari is characterized with ephemeral streams. The average annual rainfall of 50 cms in the north and about 15 cms in the south does not reveal the real variability of rainfall.

Permanent water is found only in depressions of the stream-beds and on low mud-flats or pans cutting the water table. In the areas of more rainfall and in the better years, there is a cover of tall grass broken by thorny and stunted trees, but elsewhere there are only patches of short ‘Bushmen grass’ with groves of acacia. But even in the driest parts of the desert a few leguminous plants flourish, especially the famous ‘Bushmen melons’, namely, tsama and naras.

2. Habitat:

The habitat of Bushmen, containing forests, grasslands and thorny bushes, is unique and renowned for their wealth of large game. There are numerous herbivores and carnivores developed and spread over wide areas. Many species of antelope, both large like the great kudu, and small like the duiken and steenbok, are found in great number

Other herbi­vores are giraffe, ostrich, zebra, elephant, rhinoceros, hippopotamus and quake, upon which prey a large number of carnivores like lion, leopard, wildcat, lynx, hyena and jackal. The Bushmen also eat small animals like ants, lizards, frogs, bees and locusts. The edible fruits are less abundant, but the animal food supply is far richer.

3. Hunting:

The Bushmen are basically hunters. Hunting plays a greater part than the gathering of plants, but it involves close conformity to this seasonal alter­nation of widespread abundance, followed by migration of game to a few favoured spots. Thus, the territory of Bushmen must contain permanent water sources on which both beast and man depend.

Trespass across tribal frontiers is dangerous unless previous relations are friendly. A hunter may follow wounded animals into neighboring territory, but he must visit the band and share his game, if caught, he will be attacked. But these movements are irregular and individual.

No permanent alliances are formed, and continued trespass or killing from whatever cause will lead to a feud involving whole bands which may be perpetuated by sporadic encounters over several generations.

The Bushmen band and its territory is a miniature realm; it consists of a number of families, each with its own huts, and only at the dry season are these families likely to be united in the vicinity of a water-hole.

In the remaining season, they scatter over the territory which they hold in common and hand on to their descendants. Their encampments are selected by the senior male, who lights a fire before the women begin to build the shelters.

4. Food:

Each family produces its own food. The women collect the roots, berries, grubs, insects and small game like tortoises, frogs and lizards as well as firewood and water.

The digging stick, where the ground is hard, is often tipped with horn and weighted with a bored stone. Water is collected and brought into the camp in ostrich egg-shells or dried bucks’ stomachs, for the Bushmen always camp several miles from their water-holes, especially in the dry season.

The men also go out almost daily to hunt, and unless they are following wounded game return for the main evening meal.

The hunting methods vary with the season and the prey. Usually, a man goes out alone with his son or other relative whom he is training, and a dog. He moves with bow and poisoned arrow towards a water-hole or salt lick.

The hunter creeps up to leeward and Endeavour’s to approach as closely as possible, since the range and impact of his arrows are not great.

Some of the Bushmen especially that of the Kalahari, are very skilled in the use of disguises, and imitate the cries of the young animals

Arrow poisons are variously collected from plant juices, snake sacs and the dried bodies of spiders. The hunter following the spoor of the wounded animals must reach it before the hyena or the vulture snatches his prey. Success in hunting is ensured by magical observances which vary in different parts of the country.

In the rainy season, large game can be driven into the treacherous mud-flats, where they are easily mired. During the height, they (beasts) shed their hooves; animals can be run down on foot and finally disabled with the knobbed throwing stick. Individual hunters will also construct snares and traps.

Poisoned drinking places are frequently prepared at the height of the drought in the desert areas. Occasionally when more food is required, the whole of a Bushmen group will combine in a drive which is carefully prepared forehand. The beaters move out in a wide sweep on the higher ground. Large pitfalls, sometimes four yards long and deep, floored over with a thin layer or brush, are also constructed by the group along a track down to a water-hole.

Every man hunts or gathers for his own immediate family, and he can and does establish private property not only in what is brought in, but also in resources found and left for gathering at a later date. This is usually done by sticking an arrow in the ground close to the ‘bees hive’ nest of ostrich eggs, or patch of roots which the discoverer wishes to preserve.

The arrow by its individual marking establishes the identity of the owner. When a large game is brought into the game it is in fact generally shared. The hunter keeps the valuable hide and sinew and directs the division and distribution of the meat.

The abundance of wild beasts and game in the Bushmen territory ensures a fairly abundant supply of hides, bone and sinew. Bones and sinew are of great importance, affording the bone marrow for shaft and the tough bowstring. The leg bone of an ostrich or giraffe, split, scraped and ground down to a point provides the best arrow tip. The hides, especially buckskin, are used for clothing and bags.

5. Clothing:

The clothing of a Bushmen is scanty. A man wears a triangular loin-cloth whose point is drawn backwards between the legs; a woman wears a squarish front apron hanging from a waist belt, while older women sometimes wear an apron at back as well and suspend it from the shoulder. But the most important item of a female dress is the cloak, locally known as cross.

It is both a garment and a hold all. When it is tied at the right shoulder and at the waist, the baby, the food and the firewood are all held in its folds on the daily journey back to the camp.

Men also often wear a light cloak over the right shoulder and covering the back; among some groups skin caps and tough hide sandals are worn.

The ostrich egg is used as water container. The large eggs of ostrich not only provide water containers, which are carried in netting bags, but also the material for the Bushmen beads.

The shells are broken into small chips. These chips are board, shaped to rough discs. The ostrich eggs are bartered for iron-knives, spearheads, millet and tobacco. They also exchange or barter honey, wax, feathers, ivory, skins and beads.

The Bushmen way of life is integrated with their environment. The small size of Bushmen communities enables them to continue their tradi­tional hunting and gathering without depleting the land’s resources. At least eighty types of animals are hunted in their region.

Their knowledge of the animals and plants, and their cooperation with neighboring Bushmen enable them to procure a sufficient food supply. By owning few possessions, less babies and children, and sharing their belongings they enjoy an unrestricted freedom of movement.

The effective organizational unit in traditional San society is the band, the members of which are linked by elaborate kin networks. Although polygamy is permitted, most marriages are monogamous. Religious practices are not clearly institutionalized in spite of the existence of a rich and complex mythology.

Magical and medical practices are closely integrated with dancing and trance states, constituting a system of both psychological and physical healing. The San are known for the fine paintings that they and their ancestors have executed on the walls of caves and rock-shelters.

The Bushmen, being attune to desert life, have a strong sense of survival. In times of drought, the women cease to conceive; when hunting they take care not to hurt females and young of the prey species; they make fires with the minimum amount of wood; they store water in ostrich shells; and they use almost every part of the animals they hunt.

Since water supply is scarce, its supply determines the animal population arid, in turn, the size of a Bushmen community. In brief, the Bushmen of Kalahari have wonderfully adjusted to their natural environment.

The mode of life and fulfillment of basic and higher needs of Bushmen Kalahari desert reveals a good example of the people with simple technology coping with a difficult environment (habitat). A Bushmen, with his small bow and arrows in hand, conceals himself by placing over his crouched body the skin of an ostrich, mounted on a frame.

Moving cautiously towards the herd, he imitates the movements of these great birds so cleverly that these do not suspect his presence until one of them under his arrow. The need of these people for water is paramount, since the Kalahari Desert they inhabit is one of the most inhospitable desert habitats in the world.

They fill ostrich-egg shells during the short season when the water-holes are not dry, or use their intimate knowledge of the country to find the roots, bulbs and melon-like fruits that contain Moisture or store up liquids.

Not even the most stagnant pool (pond) daunts them, for in such cases they place grass filters at the bottom of the Hollow reeds they use in sucking up water. The lifestyle of Bushmen is a topical example of man’s symbiotic relationship with his physical Environment.

Short Essay on Andamanese People

The tools and equipments of Andamanese are more elaborate than those of the other Negritoes. The fishermen of the coastal areas build large and sharply canoes. Some of them are equipped with outriggers.

For pig-hunting they use a harpoon, while their blows are of complicated ‘S form. They make decorated pottery for several generations.

The dead among the Andamanese are treated elaborately. Unlike the Semangs and Aetas (Philippines), who merely expose or bury the body and leave the spot, the Andamanese, exhume the corpse after a long mourning, and the bones, particularly the skull, are preserved by relatives.

In general, the lifestyle of Andamanese resembles very much to that of the Semangs and Sakais and the society is controlled by the headman of each group.

The Andamanese youth has to undergo a long series of food-privation as he approaches manhood. This deprivation of food to the young, which results in the older and often less active people securing a larger share, accords with the general tenor of the Andaman society, in which respect for the old is instilled into the young in many ways.

7 Types of Early Primates-Traits and Characteristics

Fossil finds from later primates (that lived in the middle Paleocene epoch, about 60 million years ago) are much more abundant; several genera have been identified. The earliest Purgatories remain consist only of teeth, but we have some skeletal parts of the later primates.

Fossil Distribution:

Paleocene and early Eocene archaic primates have been found in both Europe and North America. Several different particular species have been found in both areas. At one time, about 180 million years ago, the continents were not separated as they are today.

Instead, they formed a single supercontinent; the rest of the earth was covered by sea. Continental drift has since broken up that I super continent. But even after the primates emerged, until about 60 million years ago, North America and Europe were connected in the vicinity of Greenland.

Only in relatively recent times (geologically speaking) have the continents moved far enough apart so that the intervening seas could block gene flow between related population.

1. Oligocene Primates

Not many fossil remains have been discovered from Oligocene epoch. None has been collected from Europe. Specimens from America are also rare. Most of the remains are from Africa. All the

African remains have been discovered in Egypt. The Egyptian varieties include Parapithecus, Propliopithecus, Mocropithcus, Oligopitheciis, Aeolopithecus, Aegyptopithecus, etc. of which two, namely I Aegyptopitheciis and Propliopithecus, will be briefly described here.

2. Aegyptopithecus

Aegyptopitheciis, the best known propliopithecid, probably moved around quadrupedally in the trees, weighed about thirteen pounds, and ate mostly fruit.

Although its teethes and jaws are ape like, the rest of Aegyptopithecus skeleton is similar to that of the modern South American howler monkey. Because the propliophithecides lack the specialized characteristics of living old world monkeys and apes (catarrhines), but share the dental formula of the catarrhines, it is thought that the propliopithecides were primitive catarrhines, ancestral to both the old world monkeys and the hominoids (apes and humans).

3. Propliopithecus

From the lower Oligocene deposits at Faye in Egypt, another incomplete lower jaw with its teeth but without the ascending ramie was discovered. This is Propliopithecus which is considered to be a primitive anthropoid ape and to be very closely related to the gibbon.

The jaw was somewhat deeper, shorter and more pointed than the jaw of modern gibbon. The canines were not so big. The jaw was about the size of that of a small gibbon.

Though Propliopithecus is considered to be the ancestral form of the gibbons, Aeolopithecus, another African variety of the Oligocene primates, show much more close resemblances to the modern gibbon.

Therefore, some authorities are of opinion that while Aeolopithecus may be the ancestor of the gibbons, Propliopithecus is the ancestor of the other Hominoid. Again, it is stated by others that Parapithecus possibly gave rise to Propliopithecus, the nearest representative of the common ancestor which led, on the one hand to the existing anthropoid apes, and on the other to man.

Whatever that might be, it can be said that some of the Oligocene primates are definitely closely related to the ancestors of the various living Hominoid; while the other may be the direct ancestors of the same. The Oligocene primates are put under Anthropoid.

4. Meocene-Pliocene Primates

Since there seems to be continuity of certain lineages of Anthropoid during the Miocene and Pliocene epochs, the fossil primates of these epochs can be considered together. From this period fossil remains of several Hominoid forms, besides that of Carbide, Cercopithecidae and Lorisidae have been found from different parts of Asia, Europe and Africa.

As now we are more concerned with the fossil primates of the Ape grade, here we shall be dealing with certain important members of the Hominoid group only. Some of these hominoids are closely related to the apes to be the ancestral forms of the latter while others are most likely ancestral to the Pleistocene hominids, and therefore, some of them are included as members of the family Homicide. It has already been stated earlier that the living monkeys represent a stage of evolution between prosimians and hominoids.

5. Dryopithecine

During Miocene and Pliocene epochs the Dryopithecine primate of different varieties flourished in Europe, Africa and Asia. Fossil remains of Dryopithecine have been discovered from Europe, East Africa, Middle East, China and India.

As in most of the cases lower jaw and teeth of this extinct type have been discovered, their phylogenetic relationships are determined on the basis of dental anatomy mostly. Gregory and Hellman fully studied their dental characters and they believed that Dryopithecine were the common ancestor of the living anthropoid apes and man.

The numerous Dryopithecine animals assigned to different geological ages show considerable variation in their dental anatomy and other morphological traits suggesting various evolutionary trends towards the apes of today.

Some would seem to approach the gore some to the chimpanzee and some to the orange. Again, others show such dental characters which would require a slight modification to produce human characteristics of dentition. Gregory, Hellman and others are of opinion that Dryopithecine primates were on a distinctly infrahuman grade of evolution.

The Dryopithecine primates may be grouped under two major headings. One is the Dryopithecinae, a sub-family of the Pontiac, which again includes two groups Dryopithecus and Gigantopithecus.

Dryopithecus again comprises of several varieties of genera. The other major group is formed by Ramapithecus, which has been assigned to the family Hominidae. Ramapithecus also includes several types like Brahmapithecus, Kenyapithecus. 6.

6. Dryopithecus

Dryopithecus fossil primate was first known from some teeth and jaw bone from Miocene and Pliocene deposits of Europe and the Siwalik Hills of India. Now the remains have been discovered from different parts of Europe, Africa and Asia (India and China). Most of the remains are jaws and teeth.

It is difficult if distinguish between mandibles of Dryopithecus and Hominoid on the basis of definite features. The teeth, however, show certain variations. The incisors are smaller and more vertical in Dryopithecus than those in Paginate.

The canines are larger than those of Homicide. The molars increase in size from the first to the third. There is a definite pattern, known as Dryopithecus pattern, in the arrangement of the cusps of the lower molar teeth.

Out of five cusps, three are arranged along the cheek side and two along the tongue side. The five cusps are so separated that it forms a ‘Y’. Such pattern, or in modified form, is found in the gibbons, other and man.

Dryopithecus primates were probably quite ape like. In size, perhaps they were larger than Ilk modern gorilla, the smallest being larger than the modern gibbon. The limbs were very generalize giving indication neither of brachiating nor bipedal locomotion. The authorities are of opining that Dryopithecus are most likely ancestors of the modern Paginate, i.e., gorilla and chimpanzee >

7. Proconsul

The remains of Proconsul were discovered from the early Miocene of Kenya, East Africa. Certain specimens came from Uganda also.

(i) Characters:

Most of the remains of Proconsul were discovered by Leakey. The remains exitConsiderable variation in size and features. Accordingly, three species have been identified. These are Proconsul Africans, Proconsul Major and Proconsul Nana. It appears from the structure of that limb bones that Proconsul was not adapted to an arboreal brachiating mode of life.

(ii) Proconsul Africans:

Proconsul Africans is represented by several individuals, but the best preserve one is a fairly complete skull of an adult. In size it is intermediate between that of a gibbon and chimpanzee. The skull has no supraorbital torus, the incisive region of the upper jaw is narrow, to nasal bones are relatively broad and the nasal aperture is constricted at the lower extremity the lower jaw is marked by the absence of simian shelf and the reduction in the size of talk premolars. The mandible condoyle is of hominid form. The skull is, however, cercopithecoidit appearance.

(iii) Proconsul Major:

Proconsul Major is represented by right side of a mandible with the second* premolar and all the molar teeth in it. The mandible is massive, which suggests that the animal resembled the gorilla in size.

Rising Island an almost complete mandible of an adult was discovered. Proconsul Nyanzae was approximately of the size of Chimpanzee.

(v) Resemblance with Dryopithecus:

Proconsul may be regarded as African varieties of Dryopitheciis, because of the close resemblances between the two. Simons and Pilbara prefer to call them by the names Dryopithecus Africans, Dryopithecus major and Dryopithecus nyanzae respectively.

Dryopithecus Africans is thought to be ancestral to the chimpanzee, and Dryopithecus major may be the ancestor of the gorilla. Again, judging from the characteristics of the three species of Proconsul, by some they are regarded as ancestral to both the Pagoda and Hominoid.

Essay on the Semangs People (Aboriginal People of Malaysia)

They have many similarities to the Negroid stocks of Africa and the western Pacific Islands and are, therefore, referred to as Negritoes.

The Semangs are still in the Mesolithic Age (Middle Stone Age). They neither cultivate crops nor domesticate animals. In fact, they are almost exclusively dependent on the forests.

In search of food, the Semangs migrate continually and rarely stay more than three or four days at one place. The individual groups of Semangs are small; a band of twenty or thirty persons including children is a large one.

Each group of Semangs consists of parents and grown children with their families. Each group has its small traditional territory of about 55 sq. kms (20 sq. miles), over which its claim to the especially valuable fruits of certain trees is recognized among its neighbours.

For hunting and collecting of roots it is free to wander over the lands of neighboring groups, but it always returns to gather the heavy green prickly fruits of the tall durian trees in its own territory.

Since the group must gather its daily food as it travels, movement is slow and it does not cover a wide extent of territory: 8 to 10 kms (5 to 6 miles) would be a fair day’s travel.

The group alone is fairly defined and independent unit. In choosing a camp site, it generally follows the oldest man, and beyond the recognition of his wisdom, there is no authority and no system of leadership. Tools and ornaments belong to their individual owners.

Food indeed is often shared within the group, but not with other groups. When a man mates at about eighteen years, he usually selects a woman from a neighboring group, and often goes to live with his wife’s people for about a year or two, but later returns to bring up his family with his parents.

The sustenance of Semangs is mainly on vegetable food, hunting and fishing only when in need or as opportunity arises. They gather a wide range of berries, nuts, pith, leaves, shoots and especially roots and tubers, of which yams are most important.

The roots and tubers are dug from a depth of two to three feet with long sticks whose points have been hardened in the fire.

This is mainly women’s work, but men may also help. Little can be stored or preserved, so that the party must forage daily. The main meal of the day is usually made in the evening, but they eat also in the early morning, and have frequent eating’s in between. Yam is the staple food.

Some fruits are poisonous which are ingeniously removed in various ways. Some fruits are dried over fire; others are pounded to pulp, mixed with ashes or lime and steamed.

Food that is not eaten raw is usually boiled in tubes cut from green bamboo, which withstands the flames long enough to cook the food.

Hunting among the Semangs is sporadic and confined to relatively small game. Like the Pygmies of Congo basin, the large carnivores, such as tiger, panther, leopard and elephant, are dreaded and avoided. Likewise, rats, squirrels, birds, lizards, and occasionally monkeys and wild pigs are the usual games. The bow and heavy hardwood stake with fire-hardened point is their only weapon.

The arrow-tip is poisoned with Ipoh, a vegetarian poison obtained from the gum of up as tree. These poison trees, which grow sparsely except at higher altitudes, are owned by individuals.

Until recently, the Semangs had no dogs, and those now passed are of very little use in the chase. Game is also snared in simple noose and spring traps, and birds are lined with the sticky sap of wild fig trees smeared on splinters of bamboo, which adhere to their feet. Hunting is done by males. Females, however, may join in fishing when a group comes down to a larger river.

Apart from bow-arrow and hardened bamboo sticks, fire is also an important tool in the society and economy of Semangs. Fire is obtained by rubbing together two pieces of dried cane or by running a piece of rattan to and fro round a strip of cane.

The slowness of this method is increased by the humidity of the climate, so that fire is maintained contin­uously if possible and generally carried from place to place with torches of bamboo or of dried ‘ropes’ of dammar-resin which is collected in the higher ranges and wrapped in dried leaves bound with rattan.

So far as the clothing is concerned; their clothes are made from the vegetation of the surrounding forest. Both men and women wear girdles and necklaces of leaves of rock vein creeper.

These are regarded as charms, and not as clothing. A loin-cloth is made of bark-cloth strips. One of the most characteristic features of the women’s dress is the wooden comb with long teeth, which is cut from a segment of bamboo.

The life of Semangs rotates round bamboo. The toughness and pliancy of the bamboo wood, the sharpness of its cut edges and its tubular nodded form adapt it for many uses, from cooking vessels, and arrow quivers to matting and knives. A fire-hardened blade of bamboo will cut ordinary bamboo itself and keep its edge for a considerable time.

Pliant rattan canes and woods for digging sticks, bows and spears almost complete their tool materials. Animal bones are scrapped down to make awls, but stone tools, although used are much undeveloped. The splitting and scrapping of wood is generally done with rough, shapeless stones picked up at need and thrown away again.

The Sakai is an important ethnic group of the aboriginal people of Malay­sia who are living in the areas of isolation and relative isolation in the central parts of the country.

Sakais are found to the south of the Semang and usually at lower levels in the densely forested valleys and plains. In some districts they have interbred extensively with Malays or Negritoes, but where mainly pure in race the Sakais contrast strongly with the Negritoes in appearance.

They are a bit taller and slender build and their skin colour is often quite light; their heads are long and narrow, and their hair, though black, is long and only slightly wavy. Their lifestyle is very similar to that of the Semangs. They construct rectangular huts walled with bark strips or palm fronds. The huts are being built about two feet above the ground and they return to them regularly.

In their hunting the Sakais exhibit another great contrast. They use the ‘blowpipe’ and not the bow. The blowpipe is a tube some 2.5 to 3.7 metres (8 to 12 feet) long and made of a particular and rather rare bamboo. The internodes of this bamboo are often as much as 2 metres (6 feet) long.

The point used inside the blowpipe is smeared with Ipoh poison, like the Semang arrow. This weapon (blowpipe) is fairly accurate up to about 23 to 30 metres (75 to 100 feet) is, however, inferior to the bow both in range and force.

The blowpipe is widely used in South-East Asia. It is used by the Negrito-Toala in Celebes, but Sakai blowpipes or blowguns are among the finest.

In the opinion of some of the anthropologists, the Sakais are allied to the Australian aboriginals and other Austroloid peoples found in South-East Asia. These include the Vedas of Sri Lanka and the Kubus of Sumatra.

So far as the food supply is concerned, the Sakais depend on vegetable food. They gather wide range of berries, nuts, pith, leaves, shoots and tubers. They occasionally go for hunting and fishing. They construct their huts on trees

Both Semangs and Sakais, where they live in much closer relation with the settled cultivators, practice ‘silent trade’. The silent trade is a process of exchange of goods with goods in which none of the barter parties converse and negotiate with each other.

They place the commodity to be exchanged at a selected place and disappear. Then, the second party (purchaser) places his commodity worth and leaves the place. This process goes on till both the parties are satisfied, and exchange their goods.

The hot and humid climate, and undulating topography covered with luxurious tropical forests, have significantly influenced the lifestyle and level of development of the Semang and Sakai people of the Malaysian peninsula.

Essay on Hunter-Gatherers

The degree of specialization may be appreciated from the fact that the Bushmen are almost exclusively dependent on wild game, the native of the western plains (USA) are the bison (wild buffalo) hunters, the Tungus and Chuck his (Russia) is the reindeer herders and hunters, while the Inuit’s (Canada, Alaska and Greenland) hunt sea mammals for their survival.

It is not only that the lifestyle of the various food gatherers and hunters varies in the different geo-climatic settings, differences are also found in their food habits, clothing, shelter, tools and modes of exchange of goods.

For example, the Inuit’s (Eskimos) and the plains hunters (USA) are living almost entirely on meat, while the Goldi (Russian tundra people) and the British Columbian coast people are largely sustaining on fish.

Depending on the food gathering economy the Semangs of Malaysia and the Paiutes of Great Basin (USA) only occasionally obtain meat-food.

The pure ‘gleaner’ who knows neither hunting nor fishing, lives exclu­sively on gathered fruits, nuts, leaves, stems and insects. Interestingly enough, in all the climatic regions there is a wide range of auxiliary foods which is provided by women while the staple food is obtained by men.

Collecting, hunting and fishing are carried on by the hunters and gatherers in various degrees among different peoples. ‘Pure’ gatherers, or hunters or fishers do not exist, as each one of them obtain their food either from forests or waters.

The variations in the lifestyles of the different food gatherers, hunters and herders may be appreciated from the fact that the Yakuts and Yukaghires would be amazed at the Tasmanians’ ignorance of domestic herds.

Similarly, the Melanasians would be amazed at the Yakuts and Yukaghirs ignorance of agriculture.

The East Africans (Masais) cannot understand why the Melanasians are not having metal tools 3nd vice versa, why the Masais are not using their livestock as beasts of burden and draught animals.

The food gatherers are not homeless wanderers. Even among the least organized and the poorest in equipment, the unit groups of each family occupies an inherited territory.

Each group of the Semangs of Malaysia, the Inuit’s of Canada, the bison hunters (buffalo hunters) of USA and the Bushmen of Namibia have their own well-defined territories.

It is important to observe that apart from family and group rights to territory as a whole, ownership and inheritance of particular resources is widespread among the hunting peoples.

Leaders of tribal or camp groups may be described as owning territories when they merely administer them or even have but symbolical right to them.

Among the food gatherers in general, the landholding unit is the group of families which for some period of the year jointly occupies a settlement within a fairly well-defined territory. The durian trees among the Semangs, the pine trees among the Painters, and the beehives of the Vedas of Ceylon are owned in this way.

The Australian root gatherers in Queensland transmit to their daughters the root patches that they have tended and exploited. Contrary to this in the north-west coast of USA, man own and transfer fishing territories and women transfer patches of plants to their successors. Thus, the traditions of transfer of land, water and forest territories vary from region to region and tribe to tribe.

The Bushmen, the Paiutes and the Aruntas (Australia) lack the elaborate regulation of marriage. The social and political institutions vary from tribe to tribe. Leadership, dependent on general confidence and approval, and a strict hereditary principle is more rarely applied.

The habitat and lifestyle of some of the important food gatherers like the Pygmies, the Semangs, the Sakais, the Andamanese, the Bushmen, the Paiutes, the Blackfoot’s (buffalo hunters), the Aboriginals of Australia, Yukaghirs (Siberia), and Inuit’s (Eskimos) have been described in the first part of this chapter.

Comprehensive Essay on the Pygmies People

They lack farming, livestock breeding, permanent settlements, multi-kin social grouping, warfare for conquest, tribute, or capture of victims, social classes, civil rules, and such technical knowledge as ceramics, heddle-loom weaving, basketry, and religious or civil architecture.

The best known Pygmy groups are those who live in scattered parts of tropical Central Africa (Zaire, Congo, Gabon, Cameroon, Rawanda and Brundi). The various tribes of African Pygmies are classified into the eastern, central and western groups.

The eastern Pygmies of Africa the Mabuti live in the Ituri forests of Zaire, the central Pygmies are scattered in the Congo Republic, and the western Pygmies, such as the Bongo, are found in Gabon. Another well-known group in the Congo basin is the Twa (Batwa) who live in the high mountains and plains around the Lake Kivu in Zaire, Rawanda and Brundi in symbiosis with the pastoral Tutsi, the agricultural Hutu and other tribes.

Westward in the marshes south of the Congo River is the large groups of Tswa (Batswa), who like the Twa, have adopted much of the culture and language of the neighbouring tribes.

The Tswa live largely on fishing and trapping. North of the Congo, in the forests of the Ubangi River, live the Babinga who are also culturally very close to Pygmies.

The Twa and Tswa are still mainly nomadic hunters and food gatherers. Farther to the west, in Cameroon and Gabon, there are other scattered groups that are even closer, physically to the true Pygmies.

Some of the slightly taller groups are termed as Pymoid. The total population of Pygmies is estimated at more than 200,000 (2001 A.D.).


Generally, the stature of Pygmies varies from 1.33 metres (52 inches) to 1.49 metres (58 inches), averaging 1.46 metres (57 inches) for males and 1.38 metres (54 inches) for females. The colour of the skin ranges from yellowish or reddish brown to very dark brown.

They have prognathic jaws, broad flat nose, large eyes and dark woolly hair. Culturally as well as racially, they differ from their Negro neighbours, lacking domestic food animals and skills in agriculture, iron working and pottery. Pygmies are essentially hunters and food gatherers who live in symbiotic relationship with neighbouring sedentary farmers.

They hunt small game, fish, and collect plant foods and insects in the forest. They live on hunting, trapping, and gathering wild foods, and trade forest products with their Negro neighbours for agricultural produce. They live in small commu­nities in the forest in simple huts which are about 1.3 metres (4 feet) high, 3 metres (10 feet) long and about 3 metres (6 feet) wide.


The Congo basin, being situated on both sides of the equator, has hot and humid climate throughout the year. The average monthly temperature reads around 27°C across the year except the areas of high altitudes where the average temperature decreases steadily.

Rainfall which is convectional in character also occurs all through the year, the maximum being recorded in the months of March and September along the equator.

Moving north and south of the equator, there are marked seasonal variations. The weather remains stifling, damp and hot. The average annual rainfall over the greater parts of the Congo basin is well above 250 kms (100 inches).

The hot and humid climate of the Congo basin is ideally suited to the luxurious growth of vegetation. In fact, the forests of the Congo basin are one of the most luxuriant on the earth.

These forests consist of many kinds of broad-leaved evergreen trees. In the Congo basin, the forests originally extended from sea level up to the tops of the mountains.

The characteristic inland forest of the lowlands extend from about sea level up to the beginning of the hill forest, which may be about 62 metres (200 feet), though it may be higher or lower.

The forest canopy is almost complete and has an average height of 50 metres (160 feet) or more, with occasional trees projecting above it.

There are in many places more than fifty species of trees per hectare. There is wide variety of epiphytes also. Most trees have shallow roots, and many develop huge buttresses for support.

The vegetation in the Congo basin is arranged in several stories. The first or top story consists of very large trees requiring more light at maturity, and whose crowns start at 20 or 30 metres above the ground.

The second story is made up of trees whose crowns spread out at a lower height and begins as low as 16 metres above the ground.

The third story is made up of smaller trees whose crowns are below the top story. The fourth story consists of the trees which are less than 20 metres in height.

The trees are generally covered with numerous epiphytic floras on their trunks and branches. Trees of the upper two stories are generally free from climbers.

The forests most valuable varieties are generally found on gentle slopes or on flat land. The number of tree species is great, sometimes as many as 100 in one acre, but the proportion of species of economic importance is small. The greatest volume of timber products comes from about a few, often closely related species.

The Pygmies obtain firewood, tannin extracts, dyes, rubber, gutta-percha, rattan, bamboo, kapok (cotton), wood oils, resins, timber, rubber, and various medicines, like quinine, cocaine, camphor, etc., from the forest. These products have great value in the international market.


The food gatherer and hunter Pygmies live in small groups in the forests of Congo basin. They live in the areas of isolation and relative isolation and move about continually.

They hunt with bows and poisoned arrows and some groups have dogs, but their main food supply is often derived mainly from trees, plants, nuts, birds, insects and small games.

The Pygmies depend mainly on vegetable food, hunting and occasional fishing. They gather a wide variety of berries, nuts, pith, and leave, shoots and especially roots and tubers of which the long tuberous growths of the wild yam are the most important.

The main meal of the day is usually made towards sundown, but they eat also in the early morning, and have frequent snacks. Food that is not eaten is usually boiled in tubes, cut from long lengths of green bamboo, which withstands the flames long enough to cook the food.

At certain season of the year, a number of fruits are available in abundance, and at this time the group returns to its own territory to gather this rich supply and feast.

The hunting of Pygmies is sporadic and confined to relatively small game. The large carnivores, like tiger, panther, leopard and elephant, are dreaded and avoided. Rats, squirrels, birds, lizards, and occasionally monkeys and wild pigs, are the usual games. Apart from a heavy hardwood stake with a fire-hardened point the bow is their only weapon.

It is a simple curved wooden bow, made from a length of pliant longest tree branch, tapering at each end strung with sinew and bark fibre. The arrows, nearly a yard long, have a heavy wooden tip into a bamboo shaft equipped with two rather useless feathers.

The arrow tip is poisoned with a vegetable poison obtained from the gum of a tree. Game is also snared in simple noose and spring traps and birds are lined with the sticky sap of wild fig trees, smeared on splinters of bamboo, which adhere to their feet.


The warm humid and damp climate of the lower altitudes of Congo basin allows Pygmies to live without clothes. Many of the Pygmies live in a state of complete nakedness. All the clothes they wear is a covering of bark strip or vegetable fibres which is more or less wide and run more or less around the hips.


The tools of Pygmies are few and simple. A fire hardened blade of bamboo will cut ordinary bamboo itself and keep its edge for a consid­erable time. Rattan canes and woods for digging sticks, bows and spears almost complete their tool materials. Wooden mortars are sometimes made by burning out a hollow in an available trunk of a fallen palm tree.

Animal bones are scraped down to make tools, but stone tools, although used, are much undeveloped. The splitting and scraping of wood is generally done with rough, shapeless stones picked up at need and thrown away again.

The basic social unit is the band of twenty or more persons, which move about the forest living in temporary camps, with huts built of sapling frames thatched with leaves. Marriage is between bands, often by sister exchange and is usually monogamous. Pygmies religious beliefs centre round the forest, considered their host and benefactor.


Pygmy groups live in what has been described as a symbiotic relationship with neighboring sedentary farmers, with whom they trade and partic­ipate in social and ceremonial activities.

The Pygmies of Congo basin practice ‘silent trade’. The Pygmy hunters go by night to groves of their neighbors, who are agriculturists, and place there a quantity of meat wrapped in leaves which next day the) find changed into grain or any other kind of agricultural or other products.

As each party knows the articles in which the other is tradi­tionally interested, no time is wasted in this respect. The value of the goods deposited in each transaction is roughly similar. But, as the Pygmies are the weaker part dependent on the Bantu (agriculturists), there is a certain amount of injustice and even exploitation practiced.

Nonetheless, when a Pygmy is convinced that the amount found as corresponding to his wares is clearly insufficient, he may abstain from taking it, and so usually, on the morrow, he finds it proportionately increased.

Yet, there have been occasions when the indignation of the Pygmies on feeling that they have been cheated has been much that they have killed the offending person with a poisoned arrow or similar weapon. But such cases are excep­tional, and the silent trade continued uninterruptedly.

The Pygmies are in the primitive stage of civilization. Though the birth rate is high but the ravages of epidemics do not permit a high growth rate of population.

In fact, the Pygmies are the slaves of nature and their women are tied down to hard work, suffer great exposure and so become quickly run down physically into a state of low vitality. This explains the low birth rate, which is sometimes noticeable that these primitive people attribute it to accident or magic.

In brief, the Pygmies live in close symbioses with nature. Their neigh­bours are cultivators. Several of the Pygmy groups live in much closer relation with the settled cultivators and this area is famous for barter of forest produce.

Many of them practise ‘silent trading’ with the Negroes. Many Pygmy groups are tacitly attached to a Negro village, and have an understanding for the barter of game for agricultural crops.

After a successful hunt, the Negritos enter the banana groves of the villagers, gather fruit, and hang suitable meat in its place; the villagers when needing game will also lay out agricultural produce in an accustomed place for the hunters, who in due course will bring to that place a portion of their bag.

The Pygmies are thus free people who are utilizing the environment without much damaging it. Their lifestyle and cultural ethos have been controlled significantly by the forces of physical environment.

Essay on “Indigenous Peoples”

The greatest numbers are concentrated in Asia, about 88 million in China and about 75 million in India, constituting over 7 per cent of their total population (1999).

National borders have divided the indig­enous peoples all over the world. The Inuit’s (Eskimos), for example, are subject of the governments in Canada, Greenland, USA (Alaska), and Russia; the Fulani’s of West Africa extend across eight countries; the Papuans are the subject of Indonesian rule and own Papua New Guinea government; the Mizos or Lushais are governed by the governments of India and that of Myanmar (Burma) as about 50 per cent of the Mizos live in Myanmar (Burma).

The indigenous peoples are being termed as the ‘Fourth World’. These peoples are the descendants from a country’s aboriginal population and who today are completely or partly deprived of the right to their own territory. These people have limited influence in the national state to which they belong.

The World Council of Indig­enous Peoples distinguished the way of life of indigenous peoples from those of the first (highly industrialized), second (Socialist Block), and third (developing) worlds.

The first, second and the third worlds believe that “the land belongs to the people” whereas the fourth world believe that “the people belong to the land”.

Indigenous peoples are strikingly different and diverse in their culture, religion, and social and economic organizations. They are still being exploited by the outside world.

By some, they are idealized as the embodiment of spiritual values; by others they are designated as an obstacle impeding economic progress. But they are neither.

They are the people who cherish their own distinct cultures, are the victims of past and present colonialism, and are determined to survive. Some live according to their traditions, some receive welfare, and others work in factories, some in other professions.

They have maintained a close living relationships to the land, there exists a cooperative attitude of give and take, a respect for the earth and the life it supports.

In the last few decades, indigenous peoples have greatly suffered from the consequences of some of the developmental projects. They have been and are being separated from their traditional lands and ways of life, deprived of their means of livelihood, and forced to fit into societies in which they feel like aliens.

They have protested and resisted to save their own territories and the earth and environment, but without much success

Numerous tribes like Red Indians of North America, native Brazilians, and Andamanese tribes have perished in war, in slavery, by starvation and from disease brought by invaders.

In the Amazon basin alone about 170 tribes survive. Fifty-four, including the Juma (which has only eight members, two old men and a boy), live in unexplored pockets of the Amazon beyond the reach of modern society thus, many of the tribal’s are confronted with the danger of extinction.

Competitive Events in Marketing–Concept, Types, and Characteristics

Types of competitive events:

Competitive events can be divided into various types. These are contests which test sporting skills, artistic talents, knowledge levels or compare participants on the basis of any other parameter as a constraint within a certain set of rules and regulations applicable to all. Sports, Talent and Beauty contests are the most visible examples of competitive events.


Competitive events, being the most popular events category, have tended to become mass audience oriented. The live telecast opportunity for the television media – and thereby increased scope for reach and revenue-has tended to blur the interaction part of the benefit that events provide.

In addition, the excitement generated during such an event grips the spectators. Any interaction diverting their attention from the contest could be perceived as an intrusion. Therefore, competitive events provide more reach and fewer interactions. Given these characteristics, competitive events are primarily used for:

(i) Visibility and exposure to the brands

(ii) Prolonged impact

(iii) Corporate/brand awareness

(iv) Consolidating the positioning of brands

(v) Merchandising and sale of licensed products around the event

The most popular competitive events are sporting events. The hysteria surrounding the 2000 Olympic Games held in Australia is proof of the popularity associated with sports so much so that it is touted as the “greatest show on planet Earth Games have always evolved from the ethos and lifestyles of the people.

Converting everyday activity by exaggerating the constraints into a competition was a sure shot way to have fun and test peoples’ courage and wisdom. If not each community, in general every nation at least has a few games that have evolved indigenously.

The popularity of sporting events and its prolonged impact can be judged by the relaunch of Prudential, a UK-based insurance company, in India.

The Prudential World Cup of 1983 will remain forever etched in the minds of millions of cricket aficionados in India. One of the world’s greatest all-rounder’s and the Indian captain in the 1983 World Cup held in England, Kapil Dev, and his team made India proud by winning the cup against all odds.

They defeated the mighty West Indies who had won the two previous World Cup. This had sent the nation into frenzied celebrations unmatched till date.

That was the year 1983. Exactly fifteen years later, Prudential, which had pulled out of India due to some reasons, was on the front pages of leading Indian newspapers and in the reports on the multitude of satellite channels.

The stars of 1983 – to be precise, the entire team was present at the launch ceremony where a replica of the Prudential Cup was awarded in a mock ceremony to Kapil Dev by a top- ranking official from Prudential.

There was not a single advertisement released neither in newspapers nor on television. Yet, every cricket fan was aware of the re-entry of Prudential into India.

This is just a post-event benefit. There are other numerous benefits attached to being associated with competitive events. They have a prolonged impact because one can build on a competitive event, have follow-ups, and feature a series for many weeks before and after the event. The sponsor can have curtain- raisers and curtain-downers, and thus keep the event alive.

Still a new and exotic game for Indians, Bacardi Asian Beach Volley ball Championship on the Chowpatty beach in Mumbai fitted in perfectly with the brand image and exposure requirements of Bacardi, a liquor brand launched in India in late nineties.

The reason for this interest in sports is due to the extensive national and international television coverage thus providing visibility and exposure to the brands of the sponsoring firms at a relatively low cost. Adding to the excitement is the prospect of live coverage providing greater value to the audience and an opportunity for a larger reach during the event.

The tremendous increase in popularity of competitive events for sponsorship can be attributed to the advent of satellite television. Moving beyond corporate / brand awareness, competitive events are also being used by corporate for consolidating the positioning of brands in the minds of the consumers.

For example, sponsoring sporting events such as golf, polo, tennis, squash, etc. is akin to marketing a lifestyle for the well-heeled elite audience. The 1996 Miss World pageant sponsored by Godrej with ABCL handling the marketing and management of the show is another example that can be cited here.

Coming as it were, after the crowning of Sushmita Sen and Aishwarya Rai as Miss Universe and Miss World respectively, it was an ideal opportunity for Godrej to consolidate its position as a world-class company especially, after the restructuring of its tie-up with Procter & Gamble.

Sports venues usually have multiple sponsors and the entire playing area is surrounded by branding opportunities. The boundaries especially are prime spots.

Other unique branding opportunities exist in different games. In tennis, for instance, the guts of the rackets of players carry the logo of the sponsor.

Same can be seen on the dress or uniform that the players wear. The 1998 World Cup soccer tournament in France is the ultimate example of the popularity of sporting events with sponsors. The total value of the 12 World Cup sponsors and the organizing committee was about $428 million.

In addition to this, the turnover from the sale of World Cup licensed products was estimated at over $1 billion. And these figures do not include money by other advertisers. Other sponsors include those who have agreed to back World Cup teams or for providing free services to the organisers or for television broadcasting rights.

The competitive spirit is not only restricted to the sporting arena. Creative minds and spirits also equally share the limelight when it comes to competition.

De Beers, the World’s largest diamond mining company, in association with The Gem and Jewellery Export Promotion Council, organized a unique competition to commemorate the beginning of the new millennium-the premier Annual National Diamond Design Contest.

The focus of the contest was the creative diamond jewellery designs that women would love to wear in the new Millennium. De Beers took special pleasure in inviting all designers to participate in a design competition artists a great opportunity to exhibit their talent on a scale like never before.

It was undoubtedly a competition that offered talented designers a platform to display their brilliance on the world stage and to win national as well as international recognition.

Most importantly, the winning designers got an opportunity to be the Creator of the Millennium Diamond Design and to attend The Diamond International Awards ceremony in Paris.

At the event, referred to as the Oscar’s in Jewellery Awards, three Indian jewellery designers won the Diamond International Awards 2000 amongst 30 millennium winners. The presentation was during the Haute Couture week. The year 2000 competition broke all records for entries with 2530 designs submitted from 42 countries.

The winners came from 17 countries: Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Israel, Japan, Korea, Mexico, South Africa, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and United States of America.

The post- event follow up included an Indian Exhibition in October 2000 where the Indian audience too had a chance to see the latest talent as the Diamonds International Awards 2000 Collection was on a world tour after the awards presentation in Paris.

History on Religious and Social Reforms in India

It was inspired by the western concepts of reason, equality and liberty. It inspired the Indians to remove the defects of their culture. It, thus, gave it a new lease of life and momentum to grow.

The Indians felt that the Indian culture was great and it could grow and could face the challenge of western culture. Therefore, they tried to revive the glory of the Indian culture, reform Indian society and religion and bring improvement in every field of life. There remained no part of Indian life which remained untouched by the Indian Renaissance.

The causes which were responsible for this transformation were many. The annexation of Indian states resulted in the gradual realization of political unity in India. It provided Indians the opportunity to think about themselves and provoked them to find out causes of their misery.

The foreign contacts inspired Indians to achieve similar progress for themselves. The propaganda by Christian missionaries to make converts India stimulated both Hindus and Muslims into reinforcing their efforts to defend and protect their religion and society.

They also started house cleaning movement in their respective religion and society. Western scholars also helped the Indians in their movements. By their research and writings Max Muller and William Jones revived the part glory of Indian culture.

The Indian realised that their culture was no way inferior to that of the west and it needed only revival to stand up to or even surpass the western culture. The development of Indian Press and Journalism helped to boost this idea.

Apart from this, the introduction of English language and western education brought Indians into contact with the western ideas of liberty, equality and modern nationalism etc.

It urged the English educational Indians and provided them the encouragement for bringing forth progress in different spheres of Indian like. Thus, all the factors combinedly contributed for social-religious reformation movement in India.

The Brahmo Samaj:

Ram Mohan Roy was the first fruit of the new plant which grew as a result of the disseamination of western culture in the Indian soil. The Brahmo Samaj established by him in 1828 was the first such movements. Raja Ram Mohan Roy was born in 1772 in an orthodox well to do Brahman family of Bengal.

At the age of 15 he was turned out of the family for writing a pamphlet denouncing idol worship. He travelled far and wide and gained much experience. He knew English, French, Latin, Greek, Sanskrit, Persian, Hindi etc. He made a deep study of the Hindu Dharma Sastras.

The English civilisation impressed him very much and he went to England several times. He dedicated his life for the service of the people. He felt that there was deed of reforming Hindu religion. In 1819 he published the essence of vendant sastras in English and Bengali.

He also translated the Upanishads. In 1820 he published the principles of Jesus, the Guide to peace and happiness in which he gave the critical analysis of the teachings of Christ.

The missionaries made a strong protest against him. He tried to prove in “Appeal to the Christian people”. That Christ was not the son of God. In 1828 he found Brahmo Samaj the first meeting of which took place on August 1828.

Raja Ram Mohan Roy was a brilliant product of the impact of western education upon Indian culture. “He was in fact the first modern man in India”. A true humanist and a reformer, he wanted to raise the Hindu society from the slough of superstition and despondency.

It was a theistic organisation open to all who believed in the unity of God and discarded the worship of idols. Ram Mohan’s idealism was based upon the universalism of the Upnishads.

His aim was to establish worship of the Supreme Being worship of the heart and not of the hand, a sacrifice of the self and not of the possession of the self. He advocated the worship of one Supreme Being and the brother hood of man Brahmo Samaj stood for respect for all religions and their scriptures.

It was open to persons belonging to any caste and creed irrespective of any other distinctions. In the words of Ramsay Mai Donald; “The Brahm Samaj was unwilling to desert Hinduism but was willing to become liberal and respond the impact of western faiths.”

He was not only a religious reformer but was also a great patriot. But he was not in favour of using force against the British. His aim was to educate public opinion to develop political consciousness among the people.

According to Subhash Chandra Bose, “Raja Ram Mohan Roy stood as the apostle of religious revival.” He urged to return to the original principles of vedantism and for a total rejection of all the religious and social impurities that had crept into Hinduism in later times.

He also advocated an all round regeneration of the social and national life and the acceptance of all that is useful and beneficial in the modern life of Europe. Raja Ram Mohan Roy, therefore, stands out against the down of the new awakening in India as the prophet of the new age.

Brahmo Samaj advocated remarriage of widows and condemned child marriages. Raja Ram Mohan Roy launched a movement against untouchability and caste system. He persuaded Lord Bentinck to pass laws against the custom of Sati.

He was in favour of the freedom of the press. He was responsible for the introduction of jury system in India. He was in favour of western type of education to be given to the Indians.

He was also responsible for the founding of a Hindu college, an English School, and Vedant College at Calcutta. He has the most famous literary man of his time and wrote several books, in Urdu, Bengali, Hindi, Sanskrit, Persian and English. He was the founder and editor of a Bengali journal called “Samvad Kaumudi”.

He was been rightly called the old of a new age and the harbinger of the idea of universal humanism. According to Miss Colet: Ram Mohan Stands in history as the living bridge over which India marches from her unmeasured part to her incalculable future.

He was the arch which spanned the glut between ancient caste and modern humanity, between superstition and science between despotism and democracy between unmoble custom and conservative progress, between a be wilding polytheism and a pure if vague theism.

The Raja was the human link between the unpading past and the dawning future, between vested conservatism and medical reform, between superstitions isotationism and progressive synthesis, in short between reaction and progress.

The Theosophical Movement:

The Theosophical Society was founded by Madame Blavatsky and Col. Olcott in New York in the same year in which Swami Dayananda established the Arya Samaj in Bombay, viz. 1875. The founders of the society arrived in India in January 1879, and established the headquarters of the society in Adyar, Madras in December. 1882.

In 1888 Mrs. Annie Besant joined the society in England. Her adherence to the society proved an asset of the greatest valine. By her dynamic personality and extraordinary eloquence she soon drew to the society many dedicated Indians who accepted her as their teacher and guide.

She infused new vigour in the activities of the society, she toured throughout India giving lectures in defence of traditional Hinduism, founding educational centres, propagating her theosophical views through humorous books and pamphlets, and developing the doctrine of the society.

The ideology of the Theosophical society was a strange mixture of religion, philosophy and occultism.

It consisted of four fundamental points:

1. Unity of God.

2. The threefold emanation of God.

3. The hierarchy of beings consisting of spiritual intelligences on gods and angels, humane spirits, and sub-humane intelligence.

4. Universal brotherhood.

It supports the school of idealism, assents the primacy of consciousness, and believes that human thought is of the same nature as divine thought. Thought is capable of mastering man’s lower nature and his physical surroundings.

The spirit is eternal and immortal and reins cornates from one body to another, gathering life-experience, climbing upwards until if master, all that the world has to teach and nothing more is left to clean. Then it is beyond birth and death, fitted for immortality.

Many educated middle class Hindus were attracted to the society. Some were carried away by the spectacle of an eminent white women discoursing to eloquently on Hinduism and justifying what Christian missionaries and European writers had denounced as superstition on perversity.

It is most successful venture in this direction the opening of Central Hindu College at Benaras in 1898, where the teaching of the Hindu religion formed a part of general education. The college tried to combine the best features of an English public school with the hoary traditions of the teacher-pupil relation of ancient India.

The society also opposed child marriage, advocated abolition of caste, the uplift of the outcastes, and amelioration of the condition of widows. It denounced race and colour prejudices. As early as 1903, Mrs. Beasant avowed her political faith in these words.

India must be governed on the basis of Indian feelings, Indian traditions, Indian thoughts and Indian ideas. The society glorified Indian religions and philosophical traditions. This helped Indians recover their self confidence, even though it tended to give them a sense of false prode in their past greatness.

Arya Samaj:

Swami Dayananda was the founder of Arya Samaj. His childhood name was Mul Sankar. He was born in a small town Tankara in Gujarat in a conservative Brahmin family in 1824. He lost his faith in idol-worship at an early age.

He left his home before his marriage in 1845 and travelled all over India as a Sanyas in till 1861. In 1861 he met an ascetic, Swami Vrajanand at Mathura and became his disciple. There he studied the vedas. He left his teacher after completing his education and took up the mission of spreading true Hindu religion and culture all over India.

He established the Arya Samaj first at Bombay in 1857. He travelled throughout the country to propagate his views and established Arya Samaj organisations at different places for the same purpose. The Arya Samaj pursued the following principles:

1. The Vedas are the only source of truth. Therefore the study of the Vedas is absolutely necessary.

2. Recitation of the Mantras of the Vedas and performance of Havan.

3. Opposition to idol-worship.

4. Opposition to the theory of God reincarnation and religious pilgrimages.

5. Faith in the theory of karma and transmigration of soul.

6. Faith in one God who has no physical existence.

7. Belief in female education.

8. Opposition to child marriage and polygamy.

9. Support to widow remarriage in certain circumstances.

10. Propagation of Hindi and Sanskrit languages.

Working on these principles, the Arya Samaj did remarkable useful work for reforming the Hindu Society and religion. Two basic concepts of the Arya Samaj largely contributed to its success. Ones it provided equal status to all its members.

There remained no place for casteism in the Arya Samaj. Second, the Arya Samaj carried on its religious propaganda with Fanatic zeal. One basic element of Hinduism had always been its spirit of tolerance both in principle and practice.

This remained the main weakness at Hinduism vis-a-vis Islam and Christianity. While Hinduism tolerated each of them, Islam claimed superiority of the Koran and Prophet Muhammad and Christianity claimed it for the Bible and Jesus Christ; and both the Muhammadans and the Christians believed that their religions were the only true religions and therefore, were to be pursued by all.

The fanatic zeal of both these religions successfully drew large numbers of converts from the Hindus. Swami Dayananda understood it and therefore, provided fanatic zeal to the Arya Samaj. He claimed that true knowledge was only in the Vedas and, therefore, true religion was only the religion of the Vedas.

The Arya Samaj, therefore, became a fanatic supporter of Hinduism and became an organ of militant Hinduism. Inspired by a spirit of equality and religious zeal, the Arya Samaj did remarkable service in the cause of Hinduism and Hindu society.

It also helped in the educational advancement of Indians and had its impact on national movement as well. No other social and religious movement can stand in comparison with the Arya Samaj, regarding its popular appeal among the Indians.

In the realm of religion, the Arya Samaj opposed idol-worship, ritualism, practice of animal sacrifice, the idea of heaven and hell and the concept of fatalism. It simplified Hinduism and helped to develop faith in its supremacy among the Hindus.

The Arya Samaj claimed that the Vedas were the sources of all knowledge. We could find in them all principles concerning politics, economics, Social Sciences, humanities and all branches of positive Science.

The Hindus in fact, have forgotten their true knowledge but if they could study the Vedas they would find all knowledge of the world compacted in them. Therefore, the Hindus need not look towards Christianity. Islam or western cultural for guidance for any political, social or scientific principles.

Thus, the Arya Samaj successfully met the challenge of Islamic and Christian propaganda against Hinduism and in turn, attached their principle vehemently.

The Arya Samaj provided useful service to Hindu Society as well by making onslaught on its Social evils. It opposed child- marriages, polygamy, purdha, casteism, the practice of Sati, etc.

It incessantly worked for the education of the females, abolition of casteism and uplift of the depressed classes. Intercaste marriages and interchanging was practised by the members of the Arya Samaj in their routine life.

It did one more extraordinary work. It started to take back the converted Muslims and the Christians into Hindu fold after purifying them. It was called ‘Sudhi Movement’. Many Hindus were converted to Christianity in ignorance.

The Christian missionaries had drawn large number of converts from among the uneducated, poor and depressed classes of the Hindus. They could not be taken back within the fold of Hinduism even if they desired it.

The Arya Samaj opened the gates of Hinduism to them and defended its action on the basis of the Dharma of the Vedas. By its efforts, a large number of people were restored to the Hindu fold.

The Aray Samaj has established a large number of educational institutions in India particularly in the North. Gurukuls, Kanya Gurukulas and D.A.V. Schools and Colleges have been established by the Arya Samaj for the education of both males and female.

While the gurukuls provide education mostly in Sanskrit, the Vedas, Ayurved etc., D.A.V. Schools and Colleges provide modern education in humanities and sciences. These educational institutions have participated not only in defending Hindu religion, society and culture but also in the growth of education, knowledge and enlightenment in general.

The Arya Samaj also contributed towards arousing national consciousness. One of the biographers of Swami Dayananda wrote “Political independence was one of the first-First objectives of Dayanand. Indeed he was the first man to use the term swaraj.

He was the first to insist on people using only swadesi things manufactured in India and to discard foreign things. He was the first to recognize Hindi as the national language of India.” Many Indian national leaders like Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Lajpat Rai and Gopal Krishna Gokhle were deeply influenced by the philosophy and principles of the Arya Samaj.

The Arya Samaj, in fact, participated in building up personalities of many Indians who imbibed the spirit of militant Hinduism from it and participated actively in the national movement. The rise of extremism within All India Congress was certainly because of the militant spirit of Hinduism: and there is no doubt that the Arya Samaj was an active participant in it.

Thus, there is no doubt that the Arya Samaj, by claiming superiority of Hindu religion and culture, defended the honour of the Hindus and provided them self respect and confidence, which inspired national patriotism among them. Therefore, it certainly helped in building up national consciousness.

The Prarthana Samaj:

It was in Maharashtra that the influence of the Brahmo Samaj, movement made it’s a binding impression. In 1867 Keshab Ch. Sen founded the Prarthana Samaj in Bombay and it counted among its members distinguished persons like Justice Mahadev Ranade, Govind Ranade and Sir R.G. Bhandarkar.

In Maharashtra as in Bengal the movement was a rational unitarialism but Prarthana Samaj laid greater stress upon social reforms then upon the theological speculation. Justice Ranade was an enudite scholar with a keen intellect and under his able guidance the Prarthana Samaj became the active centre for social reforms in western India.

He was one of the founders of the widow marriage association and was an ardent promoter of the famous Deccan Education society. Its object was imparting such education to the young as would have fit them for selfless service of the country.

Gopal Krishna Gokhale founded the Servants of India Society and N.M. Joshi established the Social Service League whose aim was to collect and study social facts and discusses social problems with a view to forming public opinion on question of social service and secures for the people better and reasonable conditions of life and work.

The Rama Krishna Mission:

Quite different in spirit was the movement which derived its inspiration from Rama Krishna Paramahansa the saint of Dakhineswar near Calcutta. He started life as a poor priest without any formal education but soon developed into a divinity inspired teacher of Supreme Spiritual truth, of him Max Muller has said,” Illiterate Rama Krishna in comparison with whom the brightest intellects of Europe are mere gropers in the dark,”.

The Rama Krishna Mission founded by his great disciple Vivekananda, is the living embodiment of his message and teaching.

Rama Krishna aimed at the universal synthesis of all religions. He described the diverse modes of Sadhna or spiritual discipline prescribed by different religions.” In a potters shop there are vessels of different shapes and forms-pots, jars, dishes plates etc, but ail are made of one clay, so God’s one but is worshipped in different ages and countries under different names and aspects.” Rama

Krishna’s spiritual cosmopolitanism inspired in a new vision of the spiritual unity of mankind. It had been aptly remarked. “If Ram Mohan Roy was the mind, Dayananda the physical arm Rama Krishna was the soul of free India”.

The great task of continuing Rama Krishna’s spiritual heritage fell upon his devoted disciple Swami Viveka Nanda. He was a dynamic personality with irrepressible energy and boundless conviction.

In 1888 be travelled all over India and dedicated himself to the task of regenerating India through religion. In 1893 he attended the parliament of Religions at Chicago where he propounded the true meaning of Hinduism.

He proclaimed the Vedanto as the grand universal religion of the world. While interpreting Hinduism to the outside world Vivekanand struck a happy balance between the east and west. The metaphysical and physical, the spiritual and the material.

He raised Hinduism to its prestine glory. One of the most remarkable contributions of Vivekanand was to bring spirituality to the mind and heart of the common people. The message of spiritual hope with which he gave India acted as a potent force in the course of Indian nationalism. His attitude towards religion was free from dogmatism and other narrowness.

He was a true follower of his master in advocating universal religion. “I accept all religions that were in the past and worship them all. I worship God with every one of them in whatever frm they worship him.”

To Vivekanand religion was not a dogma, it was all persuasive in its scope. He laid special emphasis on the social regeneration and uplift of the masses. He organised the disciples of Rama Krishna Mission in 1899 he established the Belur Matha at Calcutta which became the centre of Mission activities.

In 1899 Vivekanand visited the United States. He also attends the Congress of History of religions in Paris in 1900. He died in 1902 at the age of 39. Though the span of his life was short yet he left an unending mark on the succeeding generations. Vivekanand was the voice of the soul. It went into the heart of the nation and restored it finally on its feet.

His disciples are divided into two groups: first the Ascetics who do not marry and dedicate their lives to God and the service of man. The followers of the second group live in the world and earn their livelihood but they regulated their lives according to the teachings of Rama Krishna.

They are not social reformers in the liberal sense of the word but they are helping in the reconstruction of society in several ways.

A large number of school or-phanages and dispensaries have been set up by the Rama Krishna Mission. Vivekanand established the centres of the Mission in the foreign countries also.

He also wrote several books on Raja Yoga. He participated in the religious conference of Paris. The propagation of religion made by Vivekanand proved to be very beneficial for India. Indians became conscious of their great culture and religion.

This increased their self confidence and their sense of self prestige. This paved the way for national awakening among the Indians.

According to Jawahar Lai Nehru, “Vivekananda had spoke of many things but one constant refrain of his speech and writing was abhaya-be fearless, be strong”. According to Romain Rolland.

“He was energy personified and action was his message to men”. Sister Nivedita writes in her great book, “The Master as I saw him”. Throughout those years in which I saw him almost daily the thought of India was to him like the air he breathed. True he was a worker at foundations he never used the word nationality the queen of his adoration was his mother land.

Sikh Reform Movements:

The democratic and rationalist ideas also influenced the sikh community. The Singh Sabha was founded in 1873 with the two fold objectives. It strived to bring sikh community the benefits of western enlightenment through modern education. It also protected the community from Christian missionaries and Hindu revivalists.

The Akali movement started as an off shoot of Singh Sabha movement. But it gained momentum after 1920 which aimed to liberate the Sikh Gurdawaras from the control of corrupt Mahantas. In 1921, they started a powerful non-violent satyagraha against Mahanta.

In 1922 the Government passed Sikh Gurudwaras Act which later amended in 1928. The Akali movement though had a regional movement was free from communal propaganda.

Sayyid Ahmad Khan and Aligarh School:

Movements for religious reforms were not spreading among the muslims. The Muslim upper class had tended to avoid contact with western education and culture and it was mainly after the Revolt of 1857 that modern ideas of religious reforms began to appear.

First Muhammadan literacy society was founded in 1863, whose main object was discussion of religious, social, and political questions in the light of modern ideas and encouraged upper and middle class Muslims to take western education.

The most prominent reformer among the Muslims was Sayyid Ahmad Khan (1817-1898) He was greatly impressed by the emergency of modern scientific thought and worked all his life to reconcile it with Islam.

He condemned the system of piri and muridi. The pirs and faqirs claimed to be followers of the sufi school and passed mystic words to their disciples (murids). He also condemned the institution of slavery and described it un- Islamic. His progressive social ideas were propagated his journal Tahdhib-Ul-Akhlaq.

In the commentaries on the Quran, Sir Syid advocated that any interpretation of the Quran that conflicted with humane reason, science or nature was in reality a mis-interpretation.

Secondly, he declared that Quran alone was the authoritative work for Islam and all other Islamic writings were secondary.

In the field of education, Sir Syid Ahmad Khan founded at Aligarh the Muhammadan Anglo-oriental College as a centre for spreading western science and culture. Later, this College grew into the Aligrah Muslim University.

Soon Aligarh became the centre of religious and cultural revival of Muslim community. The school became the nucleus for the formation of the Muslim University in 1920.

Ahmedia Movement:

Mirza Ghulam Ahmed of India was another famous Muslim reformer. He was born at Indian in district of Gurdaspur. He was conservative and reactionary. He was the supporter of Islamic practice of divorce and polygamy.

He died in 1918 and after that the movement was managed by Khalifa. There was a split in 1914 and the movement divided into two group-the Lahore party and Qadiani party. The Lahore party considered him as a reformer in Islam-just a Mujahid, but the Qadiani party regarded the Mirza as a prophet.

The Wahabi Movement:

The Wahabi movement was essentially a revivalist movement. Shah Walliullah (1702-62) was first leader of 18th century who wanted to revive the movement. In order to root out the social and religious evils among the Muslims his .contribution was twofold:

I. He asked for unity among four schools of Muslim jurisprudence.

II. He emphasised the role of individual conscience in religion. Shah Abdul Aziz and Syed Ahmed Barchi were prominent who gave a political colour to the movement. They aimed at creating a homeland for the Muslims, declaring to be dar-ul-harb to har-ul-Islam. The movement was crushed by the superior military of the British in the 1870.


The social and religious reformation movements affected every aspect of Indian life. It encouraged Indians to purify their religion, society and polity. The wave of this spirit spread to 20th century contributed for the betterment of Indian society.

The reformation movement helped to start clearing and purification movement in their respective religions. The Hindu, the Muslim, Christians and the Parsis started to simplify and purify their religion.

The Brahmo Samaj, Arya Samaj and Rama Krishna Mission started to modernise their religion but also to revive their faith in the religions. Foreign scholar like Max Muller, Sir William Jones, and Chas Wilkins helped reviving past glory of Indians.

They translated several religious texts of Hindus and proved that these were among the best religious treaties of the world. All these measure helped to purify their religions.

In Hindu society many social evils crept in to practice due to blind faith and superstition. All religious reformers of this century led a crusade against these social evils. They preached the people that these social evils were superstitions and irrational.

The Brahmo Samaj, Arya Samaj, The Theosophical Society advocated against sati, caste system, child marriage, polygamy and purdah system. The Arya Samaj also started Sudhi Movement to return back large number of converted Muslims and Christians within Hindu fold. So by this measures Hindu society reform ised.

The Indian resonance also contributed awards the progress of literature in different regional languages, like Hindi, Gujarati, Bengali, Urdu, Marathi, Telgu, Tamil, Malayalam and Kanada. For spreading Christian religion, the Christian missionaries first translated, Bible to different regional languages before renaissance these languages had limited literature.

Then the Newspapers, magazines and the press in different regional languages also served useful purpose in this field. Then many scholars wrote their works in their regional languages and literature in each language was gradually built up.

The Indians are largely traditionalist and follow the blind faith and superstition. They are also fatalist. They had lost sight of intellectualism reason, right and wrong and thereby justice. The growth of positive attitude and nationalism was result of renaissance.

Western education and western culture destroyed that blind faith of the Indians. At least the educated Indians started thinking reasonable and discriminating between right and wrong regarding their religion and society.

The socio-religious movement contributed for national consciousness in the country. All the leaders of India who participated and involved themselves, whether they be social and religious reformers, literary figures, scholars or scientists were patriots who loved their country. Therefore, all of them worked for national solidarity and social regeneration which is essential for national independence.

Thus, the social, religious reformation movement provided a new platform for the growth of nationalism in India. It also provided social and religious bases for Indian nationalism. The social and religious reforms can be taken as the prelude to the political awakening of India.

Essay on the Home Rule Movement in India

Consequently, at all the war conferences which were called to secure Indian help in the war effort the leaders demanded equal status for the Indians in the army, and other high positions.

In 1915 Congress proposed that Home Rule League should be started. Tilak was in sympathy with this idea. According to them, the Congress of those years war rather life less, and a more dynamic and popular association was needed to galvanise the Indian people.

For achieving of Home Rule, Balgangadhar Tilak formed a Home Rule League at Poona in April 1916. The objective of the League was declared as “attainment of Home-rule or self-government within the British empire by all constitutional means and to educated and organise public opinion in the country.

A little lather Mrs. Annie Beasant formed a similar Home Rule League at Madras on 15 September 1916. The main objective of her was to disentangle the nationalist extremist from the compromising alliance with the revolutionaries, to reconcile them to the position within the empire, and to bring them with the moderates into like in the united Congress.

Thus the year 1916 saw the Home Rule League carrying on an intensive propaganda in favour of Home Rule or self-government. In one of his speeches Tilak said “Home Rule is my birth right and I will have it”.

Mrs. Beasant argued that it was in the interest of British rulers to grant Home Rule to India. He also pleaded for full cooperation to the British Government so that she could win the war which was being fought to make democracy safe.

The two Home rule leagues worked in co-operation with each other and tried to vigorously plead the grant of Home Rule to India. The Government did not view the activities of the Home Rule League with sympathy and tried imposed restrictions and crush its activities.

In 1916 it instituted proceedings against Tilak for delivering objectionable speeches at the meetings of Home Rule League. He required furnishing a personal bond of Rs. 20,000 and two securities of Rs. 10,000 for his good behaviours for one year. On May 26, 1916 a securities of Rs. 20,000 from New India, a paper run by Annie Beasant.

In spite of negative attitude and restrictions from the Government the two Home rule league continued their propaganda work with full vigour and succeeded in making the Home rule league practically success in Indian politics.

Following the internment of Anne Beasant and her two associates, B.P. Wadia and Arumadale, the Home Rule movement attained all India character.

A wave of indignation spread throughout the country against this action. Protest meetings were held all over the country to protest against the repression by the Government. Even M.A. Jinnah, the Muslim League leader joined the Home Rule league.

A joint meeting of the All-India Congress committee and the council of Muslim League was held in July 1917, which condemned the negative attitude of the Government and praised the work of Home Rule League.

It also made a representation to the viceroy and the Secretary of state for India pleading for grant of substantial instalment of self-government.

In April 1918, Tilak along with other prominent political leaders took part in the Delhi war conference. While the Conference was considering the adoption of a resolution for recruitment of Indians in the army, Tilak suggested that it would be better to promise Home rule in the resolution with a view arose the enthusiasm of the people of India.

But this proposal did not find approval of the Governor. So Tilak walked out of the meeting. On 16 June 1918, the Home rule league celebrated the Home rule day and passed resolution disapproving the methods and measures of the Government for the utilisation of man power and resources of India.

Mean-while, the publication to the Mesopotamian commission, the Government of India severely criticised. Mr. Montague an ex- under-secretary of state for India supported Indian demand for an immediate declaration of British policy.

He said “If you want to use loyalty (of the Indians people) you must give them that higher opportunity of controlling their own destinities, not merely by councils which cannot act, but by control, by growing control of the executive itself.”

But the deteriorating war situation in Europe, England was keen on enlisting the support of Indians. Meanwhile, the British Government impressed upon the Government of India to release Mrs. Beasant and her associates. On 20 August 1917 Montague the secretary of state for India made the historic declaration regarding the ultimate goal of the British rule in India.

The declaration said, “the policy of His Majesty Government with which the Government of India are in complete accord, is that of the increasing association of Indian in every branch of the administration and the gradual development of self-governing institutions with a view to the progressive integral part of the British Empire”.

But the Montague Chemsford report failed to satisfy the Home rule leaders. Mrs. Annie Beasant said that reforms were,” Unworthy of England to offer and India to accept.” The Indian National Congress also described it as inadequate and disappointing.

But the Home rule movement soon died because Mrs. Beasant overnight became a near-loyalist in the late 1917 after Montague’s promise of responsible government and Tilak became increasingly involved in libel suit against Valentine Chirole and left for England to fight his case in September 1918. Above all, emergency of Gandhi totally eclipsed the Home rule movement.


The Home Rule movement played a significant role in the history of national struggle. The leaders of the Home rule place before the Government a concrete proposal of self-government. It also produced a new set of political leaders were who prepared to devote their full time and energy the cause of national struggle.

Above all, the movement created a strong mass base, which is evident from large member of people, took a pledge to continue as a member even if it was declared illegal by the Government. Above all the Home rule league for the first time exerted foreign pressure to achieve Indian Independence.