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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Economic Development and Cultural Change among the Okavango Delta Peoples of Botswana
Author:Bock, John
Periodical:Botswana Notes and Records (ISSN 0525-5090)
Notes:biblio. refs., ills.
Geographic terms:Botswana
Southern Africa
Subjects:social change
child rearing
Development and Technology
Economics and Trade
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
economic development
Ethnic minorities
Traditional culture
Okavango River Delta (Botswana)
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/40980202
Abstract:This case study of two communities in the Okavango delta, Botswana, one where people are engaged in traditional economic pursuits, the other where people are engaged in wage labour in the tourism industry, examines how economic development in the form of nature tourism (also referred to as ecotourism) impacts the acquisition of traditional skills and knowledge by children. The traditional community, numbering about 200 residents, is located on the eastern side of the Okavango Panhandle and includes Bugakwe, Wayeyi Dxeriku, Hambukushu,and Xanekwe homesteads. Of the 120 children, at any one time about 20 attend school. The second community is located on the Boro River. Its 200 inhabitants are about evenly divided between Xanekwe, Wayeyi and Hambukushu. Of the 108 children, all over the age of seven attend school. A series of tests conducted in each village to examine differences in traditional skills and knowledge, corroborated by several years experience observing children in both communities, found that children in the traditional community have an intimate and regular interaction with the natural environment, whereas children from the wage labour community are oriented to urban life, even when at home. A critical point emerging from the study, ongoing since 1990, is the stunning rapidity of cultural change. Children from the same ethnic groups, separated by a few years and a few kilometres, are living radically different lives, resulting in major differences in the types of skill and knowledge they acquire. Bibliogr., sum.