Life Without Chiefs – Four Level Interactions | Flax Golden Tales

Life Without Chiefs (Marvin Harris, USA) (1927-2001)

Literal Comprehension

This research-based essay was written in 1989 by American author, Marvin Harris. In his essay, he talks about human nature from the previous to the current. Up to now, many searching and gathering bands and villages remained without kings, queens, presidents, and ministers. All folks themselves have been chiefs and there wasn’t any idea of the ruler and dominated. Equally, folks didn’t preserve an account of how a lot and what they gave or took Robert Denton and Canadian anthropologist Richard Lee analysis additionally inform us that they hate generosity. With cultural evolution, small band and village political management began exercising by headmen however they may not use their energy to drive others to obey their rule.

In an identical manner, there have been many freeloaders who took greater than they gave. In the freeloader’s group, there were Shaman, quarrelsome and stingy individuals who take greater than giving. Together with the reciprocity apply, there was additionally the system of redistribution. Redistribution occurred in meals and different beneficial issues. A headman divided the precious issues into a separate portion. If the collected issues have been greater than sufficient, the headman would retailer and in a while, it could be redistributed within the time of scarcity.

In the long term of time, the massive man earned higher issues and when there was a scarcity of meals, folks would come to him, anticipating to be fed, in return, he might name upon those that had particular expertise to make material, pots, and canoes for his personal used. In this manner, the massive man turned chief. Later chiefdom developed into states, and likewise into empires.

In response to Marvin Harris, a person has not inborn high quality to create hierarchy or class in his society and for him, it’s the fall of human beings from the peaceable origin.


Diamond research-based writing research human nature and involves the conclusion that attributable to cultural evolution human being turned corrupted and egocentric. He additionally asserts that by start, human beings wouldn’t have such destructive qualities. Earlier than cultural evolution, in searching gatherer society, there weren’t any head and large males, however with cultural evolution. There appeared an idea of the chief and headmen. Later chiefdom developed into states.

Essential Pondering

In my view, this essay could be very a lot helpful for these college students who wish to research the origin of human being and their nature. Personally, I virtually all don’t see any of its backdrops. Nonetheless, at one level, I disagree: the essayist tends to imagine that previous searching gatherer society was so good however he didn’t see its excellent destructive sides. In this case, I doubt in his opinion and ask a query: we’re not there any backdrops of such societies?


After studying this essay, I lean on many beneficial issues. My imaginative and prescient of the previous has actually modified. Earlier than studying this textual content, I believed that historic folks have been barbaric, wild uncivilized and so they lacked human qualities. Another factor is that in my faculty time, our Nepali instructor, Hari Rana would say to us that we should always not imitate something from the previous. After studying this textual content, my imaginative and prescient of wanting historic interval has modified. What our instructor had taught us that was fully mistaken. From the previous, we will copy many beneficial issues.

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