Lifestyle of the Zulu
ANT 101: Introduction to Cultural Anthropology (DSF1246A)
Instructor: Geoff Wood
Lifestyle of the Zulu
The Amazulu people from the Natal Province of South Africa originated around the 14th or 15th century with a population of about 3 million and spoke IsiZulu from (Nguni) chiefdom. Neighboring chiefdoms were the Sotho, Tswana, and the closest to the Zulu were the San in which the Zulu incorporated their lifestyle patterns from them. Rural Zulu main form of subsistence is pastoralizing and agriculturalist herding cattle and farming corn and vegetables which included labor intensive work and domestic duties (http://www.uiowa.edu/~africart/toc/people/Zulu.html.) The Zulu believed in Nyulunkulu a creator god from the spirit world in which chiefdoms called mana supernatural powers that manifest itself in people (Nowak & Liard, 2010a). Zulu peoples backgrounds of historical conquest has made them a multi-cultural society bound together by similar language, similar rituals and celebrations performed around common symbols and common African systems of belief. (Monteiro-Ferreira, 2005.) Zulu people had a strong socio- political organization that lead to and distinguished culture, victory and transformations of the past present and future brought about, military and political change, after apartheid set in most Zulu were conquered, divided and their beliefs and values were integrated into the Western world’s industrialized and capitalized lives. The Zulu or the AmaZulu (people of the heaven) motto was “let us rise and build” they speak a native language of the Bantu IsiZulu and believe in mana or in a supernatural force that controls their health and their wealth. Their ancestors migrated to KwaZulu in the ninth century in chiefdoms when there was no consolidation, no nation, or military reform amongst the Zulu people, Although Zulu lacked power and military organization there strong socio-political organization led to their victory and transformations There hope was in was the abundance of fertile land, tributaries, rivers, streams, and nutritious pastures that offered a better quality of life. http://www.zulu.org.za/index.php?districthome+29++56980. The Zulus primary mode of subsistence was agriculturalist, although some also used a form of pastoralism. Zulu people farmed corn as well as other vegetables and used the cattle for meat, milk and wealth. Using this form of subsistence required the women to garden, weed, take care of the children, cook, clean, and gather shell fish. The men and herd boys were used for caring for the cattle and protection. (Nowak & Liard, 2010b). The Zulu people use lineages to define themselves in their patrilineal (fathers family) descent groups marriage, kinship, and social organization. There is much physical and cultural diversity among the Zulu. In Chiefdoms practice primogeniture a form of hierarchy living in and patriarchal society where authority is ascribed (ranked). When Zulu marry the women live patrilocal with their fiancés extended family. Marriage is usually monogamous and exogamous includes a great deal of wealth using bride wealth to gain cattle, clothing and jewelry making divorce undesirable. Marriage is not considered permanent until the woman is with-child with a boy. The children of the Zulu people adhere to the same as their mothers and fathers or women and men. They help in raising the children gardening, harvesting, cooking as well as learn to fight, make weapons, and tend to the cattle. Zulu children have rites of passage at birth, puberty, marriage, and death. After being emancipated into adulthood girls and guys are ready for marriage and invites her love through love letters made of beads. Women also made beads (ibhege) and baskets which are sentimental to the Zulu people having embodied messages. Meanings behind beads were about love, church, and tradition. Using 7 different colors and different shapes...
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