GROWING UP HADZABE

There are many babies, and in a Hadzabe mother's lifetime she is pregnant an average of six times. Mothers who are nursing typically go topless, and allow their infants to nurse on demand. 

Unfortunately, there is a very high infant mortality rate with one in five not surviving. In addition, 46% of children don't live past fifteen years old. They succumb to diarrheal illnesses, malaria, and accidents which, without access to modern healthcare, can only be treated with bush medicine.

Childcare is shared among all the women and teenage girls, and it was sometimes difficult to tell who was the mother versus an auntie or sister.

The Hadzabe do not have a written language, and by our standards are illiterate. However, given their environment, they are very literate in the subtleties of plants and animals. It is noteworthy that all the neighboring pastoral tribes have at some point experienced famine, but the Hadzabe have never gone hungry. They are also the only tribe that don't adversely impact their environment. 


They pass along their culture via an oral tradition:


Children learn how to find food at an early age, and by the age of six or seven they are collecting sixty percent of their diet.

Boys don't have toys beyond bows and arrows, and they spend much of their days target practicing or learning to make arrows around the men's fire.


By the time they are teenagers they are hunting with the men, and have become quite accurate with their arrows. 



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