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Anthropology - Essay Example

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This involved the substitution of human society from hunting and gathering to a more sedentary lifestyle with centralized operation. This form of settlement supported an increasingly large population. After this…
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Anthropology
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Lifestyle al Affiliation Lifestyle The agricultural revolution was a renewal of human life. This involved the substitution of human society from hunting and gathering to a more sedentary lifestyle with centralized operation. This form of settlement supported an increasingly large population. After this transformation, more plants and animals were domesticated. Additionally, the hunter-gatherers built villages and towns. This led to change of their environment by adoption of specialized food crop cultivation. This led to excessive food production, which in turn led to trade in surplus goods. There was the development of complex form of communication. People also formed government due to their centralized form of life (Ferraro & Andreatta, 2009). This paper seeks to present some of the biological and/or social consequences of humans switching from a hunter-gatherer lifestyle to a farming lifestyle.
There were various consequences of human switching from a hunter-gatherer lifestyle to a farming lifestyle. Most of these consequences are social and biological. The most significant change was brought by sedentary life. This form of life encouraged high population growth. As a result, more food was needed to satisfy the ever-increasing population. However, this led to increased competition for food as human population rose above the available food. Additionally, the shift from hunter-gatherer to farming led to diet change. This had a tremendous influence on the anatomy of human teeth and jaws. This is because initially human was adapted to hard food, but this shift led to adoption of simple food that required little effort to chew. In fact, the hunter-gatherer had longer, narrower jawbones. The size of jaw became shorter when farming was adopted because most of the foods were raw and processed (Larsen, 1995). Moreover, the rate of disease transmission increased as the hunter-gatherer adopted a more sedentary lifestyle. This was because of the unhealthy practices and living together with other domesticated animals (Larsen, 1995). Therefore, society became more susceptible to disease than it was before.
Additionally, the change of life to a more sedentary life meant people could farm instead of hunting and gathering. This forced people to settle down in a centralized place. Consequently, there was the development of settlement and group living in the society. This was followed by development of more complex social institutions, and thus well-established forms of communication. There was also division of work and this led to the development of government that could delegate responsibilities (Larsen, 1995). There was also a higher form of organization as people were needed to cook, farm, and other things, and this called for coordination due to increased responsibilities. Moreover, the adoption of agriculture led to food surpluses. This led to increased population and evolution of trade. This was because there was enough to eat and sell. Lastly, there was a change in cultural organization that was originally matriarchal to a patriarchal system (Ferraro & Andreatta, 2009). In this period, women had a higher status in the society as they were also involved in hunting and gathering of food. They also gave birth and created life. However, with the agricultural revolution, women were no longer needed to hunt and gather. The role of men was uplifted in society at the expense of women because only one person was needed to work and feed the whole family. Women work involved kitchen chores hence their declined importance (Ferraro & Andreatta, 200.
In conclusion, it is clear that Neolithic revolution transformed the life of hunters and gatherers in different ways. There was the development of more efficient institution in the society, but there were challenges such as disease increase.
References
Ferraro, G & Andreatta, S. (2009). Cultural Anthropology: An Applied Perspective. New York: Cengage Learning.
Larsen, C. (1995). Biological Changes in Human Populations with Agriculture. Annual Review of Anthropology, 24, 185-213. Read More
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