Tuesday, January 20, 2009

There is no escaping the Bushmen...

Last semester I read, watched videos, participated in discussions, and wrote ten thousand words on the Bushmen of Africa. I did not knowingly and willfully take a class devoted to these nomadic hunter-gatherers. Nowhere on my transcript do I have an 'A' for Bushmen 101, but my introduction to anthropology was just that. As the sun set on December 19, 2008, after burning every last page of text in my possession, I turned my back in gleeful satisfaction with the knowledge that I would never again be haunted by the Bushmen. A new term is upon us. Twice a week I sit in a room right next door to Dr. Crandall's Bushmen 101 class and snicker at the poor saps who have three really long months ahead of them. One afternoon while I was snickering away, my professor explained that we would be watching a video about Mayan society...which is appropriate because that's what the class is, Maya Society and Culture...multiple centuries and half a world away from the Bushmen of Africa. The video was about the rise of a complex society. It discussed what factors influence that rise, and how even though the specifics may vary regionally, the overall formula for the creation of a complex society is a global one. As I watched, one moment I was transfixed by the genius and beauty of the Maya society, and before I knew what had hit me, there were the Bushmen!!! In fact, it was a clip from one of the same films I had to endure just months ago! My mouth actually dropped open as I watched them hunt down that giraffe with sticks...again. I left class distraught and confused as to how this could have possibly happened to me. I'm just going to have to accept the sad realization that for me, there is no escaping the Bushmen.

2 comments:

Caitlin & Brinton said...

This is how I feel about the Australian Aborigines :) I love your posts, they're so funny. I miss you! I hope that was the end of the Bushmen FOR-EV-ER!

Charmaine said...

Hailey, I loved your story, it made me think of a few things. One was a movie I seen as a kid,(A Little Rascal Movie) it was suppose to be funny, but irt didn't make me laugh, it gave me nightmares for many years. (Lets hope taht doesn't happen to you!) And the second thing was this line from one of my favorite poems, "And the Goblins will get you if you don't watch out!!!" (IF you don't know it, ask you mom, she can tell you all about it!
I love you,
Aunt Mainie