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Comparison of the Tribal and Chiefdom Societies - Essay Example

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This work called "Comparison of the Tribal and Chiefdom Societies" describes several differences between chiefdom and tribal societies in relation to technology and economy. The author outlines division of labor, social stratification, political organization, kinship, gender relations, religious organizations, and ideology…
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Comparison of the Tribal and Chiefdom Societies
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Download file to see previous pages Fourth, the social stratification method is based on prestige and power possessed in tribal and chiefdom societies respectively. Fifth, tribal societies do not have an authoritative political organization while the chiefdom does. They only have pan-tribal associations made up of elders who serve to unite the community. The chief is the authority in the chiefdom, and depending on its size the chiefdom can be run by an overall chief and other smaller chiefs responsible for different regions. The sixth comparison is based on kinship; tribal segments and ranking or societal status are used in tribal and chiefdom societies respectively. Lastly, with regard to gender in both societies, males dominate over females.
Generally, societies put in place social control mechanisms to maintain order. Tribal and chiefdom societies differ in the degree and levels of political integration, how much they concentrate authority into political roles, and how they differentiate political institutions from kinship, religious and economic structures. Furthermore, societies are differentiated on the basis of their level of the economy, technology, and communication. Based on these factors societies can be divided into four different types; the band, tribal, chiefdom, and state societies. These four types of societies are hunters and gatherers, simple agriculturalists, advanced agriculturalists, and industrialists respectively (Peoples and Bailey, 2011). This paper focuses on comparing tribal and chiefdom societies. This comparison relates to their technology and economy: division of labor, social stratification, political organization, kinship, gender relations, religious organizations, and ideology.
Though tribal society's main classification is horticulturalists or unsophisticated agriculturalists, some engage in pastoralist activities, hunting, or gathering. Horticulture is like a simpler form of agriculture where people plant, weed, harvest, and store food. The system does not apply complex technologies like crop rotation, soil fertilization, or plowing nor do they apply the factors of production i.e. land, labor, capital, and machinery. In fact, they prefer to use basic hand tools like hoes and digging sticks which demand a lot of energy in their use. The land tilled is small, thus they can afford to use such basic tools and basic irrigation techniques, which can be done by the family members. Tribal societies engaging in pastoralist activities own animals. This is a common practice for societies that live in non-cultivatable land, for example, deserts, arid, and grasslands.  ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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