Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Most Interesting Tribes In Today's World

Himba tribe -Africa
Himba boys

Kaokoland: Himba Settlement
Himba settlement
The Himba are an ethnic group of about 20,000 to 50,000 people living in northern Namibia, in the Kunene region (formerly Kaokoland) Recently they have also built two villages in Kamanjab which have become a tourist destination. They are mostly a nomadic, pastoral people, closely related to the Herero, and speak Otjihimba, a dialect of the Herero language.

Mursi tribe  - Afica
The Mursi (or Murzu) are a nomadic cattle herder ethnic group located in the Debub Omo Zone of the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and People's Region in Ethiopia, close to the Sudanese border. According to the 2007 national census, there are 7,500 Mursi, 448 of whom live in urban areas, of the total number 92.25% live in the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and People's Region (SNNPR).

Surrounded by mountains between the Omo River and its tributary the Mago, the home of the Mursi is one of the most isolated regions of the country. Their neighbors include the Aari, the Banna, the Bodi, the Kara, the Kwegu, the Me'en the Nyangatom and the Suri. They are grouped together with the Me'en and Suri by the Ethiopian government under the name Surma.

Pirahã tribe - South America
Piraha woman with children
The Pirahã people are an indigenous hunter-gatherer tribe of Amazon natives, who mainly live on the banks of the Maici River in Brazil's Amazonas state, in the territory of Humaitá and Manicoré municipality. As of 2004, they number about 360, which is sharply reduced from the numbers recorded in previous decades, and the culture is in danger of extinction. The Pirahã people do not call themselves Pirahã but instead the Hi'aiti'ihi, roughly translated as "the straight ones".
The Pirahã speak the Pirahã language. Members of the Pirahã can whistle their language, which is how the tribe's men communicate when hunting in the jungle.As far as the Pirahã have related to researchers, their culture is concerned solely with matters that fall within direct personal experience, and thus there is no history beyond living memory. Pirahãs have a simple kinship system that includes baíxi (parent, grandparent, or elder), xahaigí (sibling, male or female), hoagí or hoísai (son), kai (daughter), and piihí (stepchild, favorite child, child with at least one deceased parent, and more). There appears to be no social hierarchy; the Pirahã have no leaders. Their social system can thus be labeled as primitive communism, in common with many other hunter-gatherer bands in the world, although rare in the Amazon due to a history of agriculture pre-Western contact (see history of the Amazon). They barter with external traders but have resisted most external influences (such as encouragement to farm) retaining a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

Akuntsu tribe - South America

The last six surviving Akuntsu. When they die, the tribe will become extinct.
 © Fiona Watson/Survival
Only six members of Akuntsu tribe remain
The Akuntsu tribe is one of the isolated tribes of Rondônia. They are one of the indigenous peoples of Brazil. They were first contacted in only 1995, when they numbered seven people. As of 2006 their population was down to six. They are located in the Igarape Omere region to the southwest of Rondônia. The tribe consists of chief Kunibu Baba (male,age: ~ 70), Pupak (male, age: ~ 40), Ururu (female, age:~80) and three women with ages from 23-35. The seventh member of the tribe died in 1995. The only child born after that died in 2000 in a storm. With his death the only hope of the tribe avoiding extinction faded. In October 2009 Ururu died. Another isolated tribe known as Kanoê of Omere lives near their village. Both tribes were severely decimated during waves of massacres by cattle ranchers and their gunmen during the 1970s and '80s.

Yanomamö tribe - South America
Yanomamo man
Yamamomo village

The Yanomamö are a large population of indigenous Amerindian people in South America. They reside in the Amazon rainforest, among the hills that line the border between Brazil and Venezuela. Due to the remoteness of their residence, they had remained largely uncontacted by the outside world until the beginning of the 20th century. This allowed them to retain several aspects of their culture that factors such as population explosion and growth in material wealth have eradicated from the rest of the world. As a result, the Yanomamö have come to be one of the most widely studied groups by modern science.The Yanomamö live in villages usually consisting of their children and family. Village sizes vary, but usually contain between 50 and 400 people. In this largely communal system, the entire village lives under a common roof called the shabono. Shabonos have a characteristic oval shape, with open grounds in the center measuring an average of 100 yards. The shabono itself constitutes the perimeter of the village, if it has not been fortified with palisade walls.

Jarawa tribe - Andaman Islands (Indian Ocean)
A boy from the Jarawa tribe in an undated photo released by the Anthropological Survey of India.
Jarawa boy
The Jarawa are one of the adivasi indigenous peoples of the Andaman Islands. Their present numbers are estimated at between 250-350 individuals. Since they have largely shunned interactions with outsiders, many particulars of their society, culture and traditions are poorly understood. Their name means "foreigners" or "hostile people" in Aka-Bea.

Asmat tribe - New Guinea

Asmat settlement
The Asmat are an ethnic group of New Guinea, residing in the Papua province of Indonesia. Possessing one of the most well-known and vibrant woodcarving traditions in the Pacific, their art is sought by collectors worldwide. The Asmat inhabit a region on the island's southwestern coast bordering the Arafura Sea, with lands totaling approximately 19,000 km2 (7,336 mi2) and consisting of mangrove, tidal swamp, freshwater swamp, and lowland rainforest. The land of Asmat is located both within and adjacent to Lorentz National Park and World Heritage Site, the largest protected area in the Asia-Pacific region. The total Asmat population is estimated to be around 70,000. The term "Asmat" is used to refer both to the people and the region they inhabit.

Korowai tribe - New Guinea
Korowai tree house
Korowai house
Korowai men

The Korowai, also called the Kolufo, are a people of southeastern Papua (i.e., the southeastern part of the western part of New Guinea). They number about 3,000. Until 1970, they were unaware of the existence of any people besides themselves.The majority of the Korowai clans live in tree houses on their isolated territory. Since 1980 some have moved into the recently opened villages of Yaniruma at the Becking River banks (Kombai-Korowai area), Mu, and Mbasman (Korowai-Citak area). In 1987, a village was opened in Manggél, in Yafufla (1988), Mabül at the banks of the Eilanden River (1989), and Khaiflambolüp (1998). The village absenteeism rate is still high, because of the relatively long distance between the settlements and the food (sago) resources.
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