Cultural Survival Quarterly Magazine

Small-scale Projects and Sahel Nomads

In the aftermath of the 1968-1973 drought in the Sahel many development agencies were anxious to respond to the pressing needs of pastoralists. Herders in the northern Sahel had lost a large proportion of their animals and hence their means or livelihood.

Open Letter on the Ju/Wasi of Bushmanland

The Ju/Wasi people of Bushmanland need help and support to keep their land and develop a better way of life for themselves and their children. Picture a people… * who have lost 70 % of the land they had occupied for at least 1,000 and perhaps as long as 23,000 years…

Introduction - 8.1

Pastoral nomadism provokes highly contrasting images. The romantic image of the nomad as a free spirit, untrammeled by the restrictions of sedentary life - such as the desert Bedouin - is strongly represented in Western literature while portraits of tall, haughty Masai leaning on their spears surrounded by cattle compete for our attention on the glossy pages of coffee table books.

Generating Interest

Money for human rights work is scarce. For the past ten years, Cultural Survival has spent eighty percent of its' budget directly on projects for indigenous peoples, and reports which publicize their plight here and abroad.

Nomads in a Wider Society

Nomadism is found mostly in marginal areas which support only relatively sparse populations, particularly in the arid and semi-arid regions of Africa and Asia. It is a traditional form of society that allows the mobility and flexibility necessary for relatively even use of vegetation over large areas of low quality rangeland.

Land and Pastoralists

No issue is more critical to the future well-being of Kenya's pastoral populations than secure land tenure. Herders' access, particularly during dry months, to grazing land and water resources is the essence of any pastoral existence.

India: The Bharvad Predicament

We are like stepchildren, we are the government's stepsons. We are cattle people, we own no land, no fields; without fields we pay no tax to the government, farmers pay, and so you know "you look after those who feed yon."

Change and Egyptian Bedouins

Although they may appear as coastal communities on a map, Bedouin groups along the northern edge of the Egyptian Western Desert orient themselves south toward the desert where, until sedentarization, their migrations had taken them. Permanent water sources attract them to the coastal region during the summer season when the desert is parched.

Food and the Turkana in Kenya

The Turkana are nomadic pastoralists who live in the desert regions of northwestern Kenya. These people were one of many affected by a severe drought in 1979 and 1980. Although the famine which resulted from the sharp drop in food production was dramatized by the international press, insecurity of food availability is characteristic of pastoral production systems.

Do Relief Efforts Beget Famine?

The food supply of African pastoralists is precarious even in the best of times. When raiding, drought, and disease reduce the number and strength of the livestock upon which pastoralists' livelihood depends, shortages and famine often result.

Chittagong Hill Tribes of Bangladesh

Resource Development and Ethnic Conflict

Toward a New Indian Policy in Brazil

"Perhaps many of its will have to write our Indian history with blood, but one day we will make the V of victory to the government an to FUNAI. We will be victorious." - Marcal Tupa-Y (Guarani leaders assassinated on 25/11/83)

The Saami in a Shrinking World

In Europe's arctic periphery, one people straddles four nation-states. The traditional tracts of the Saami (formerly called "Lapps") dip south beyond central Norway and Sweden, and skim, across the arctic regions of Finland and the Kola peninsula of the USSR.

The Qashqa'i of Iran

In spite of debilitating political and economic transformations in the 1960s and 1970s, a large proportion of the 400,000 Qashqa'i of southwestern Iran still are pastoral nomads. The revolution of 1978-1979 and the creation of the new Islamic Republic of Iran have permitted a rapid resurgence of tribalism and a resumption of extremely productive pastoralism.

Shahsavan in the Grip of Development

The Shahsavan are a nomadic pastoralist tribe located in northwest Iran near the Soviet frontier. These Azeri-Turkish speaking pastoralists migrate between their winter quarters, qishlaq, in the Mughan steppe of Azerbaijan, and their summer quarters, yeylaq, around Mount Sabalan, approximately one hundred fifty miles to the south.

Relocating Blacks in South Africa

Recent attempts by the South African government to relocate Blacks have met with strong protest from those targeted for removal and their supporters. Last December, 2,000 Bakwena, residing in Magopa, were given seven days to vacate their village and move to a new homeland. After seven days, government officials gave the order to bulldoze village churches and schools.

Peru: People, Parks and Petroleum

Reports in the Lima press on January 23 and 24, 1984, described a bow and arrow attack by a group or 20 to 50 naked and painted members of the "Pirumashco tribe," occurring on January 22 in the Isthmus of Fitzcarrald area of Mann Province, Madre de Dios, Peru.

Nomads in Jordan and Syria

The modern nation-states of Jordan and Syria encompass most of the Syrian desert (Badiyat al-Sham). Although the desert is, for the most part, unsuitable for farm agriculture, it is good pasture and has been used by Bedouin for thousands of years.

Brazil: Land Policy and the Indigenous Movement

Brazilian Indians have taken advantage of the process of abertura ("opening," the process of political democratization initiated by President Joao Figueiredo in 1979) to make significant political gains. But landowners and developers have not stood by idly, and the military government's growing tendency to see and administer land as a national security issue bodes ill for Indian interests.

Afghanistan's Kirghiz in Turkey

The arrival in August 1982 of a group of 1,138 Afghan Kirghiz pastoral nomads in the village of Karagunduz, near the shores of Lake Van in Eastern Anatolia, seemed to mark the end of their sixty-five year search for a safe haven.

Afghan Nomad Refugees in Pakistan

Since the Soviet army entered Afghanistan on December 27, 1979, approximately three million Afghans have crossed the border into Pakistan seeking safety and a livelihood. Among them are several groups of fully nomadic people, many others who have traditionally combined fettled agriculture with seasonal migration into the mountains with small herds, and pure agriculturalists.