This series began as just another CenterTao post, “Who are you?” I found it merited more, which led to six posts. Who are you?; Who are you? (II); Who are you? (III); Who are you? (IV) ;Who are you? (V) and We All Know We Don’t Know. These finally led to my pièce de résistance, The Tradeoff. These posts lean heavily on research done by the Marshall family. From Wikipedia:
“In 1951, the Marshall family went to South-West Africa (now Namibia) to conduct an ethnographic study of the !Kung of Nyae Nyae (also known as the Ju/’hoansi or Ju/’hoan Bushmen). The family became deeply engaged in this work and returned to Africa on several expeditions throughout the 1950s and 1960s, each lasting from a few months to a year and a half. As Elizabeth Marshall Thomas explains in her book, The Old Way, Laurence Marshall attempted to recruit an anthropologist to join their expeditions, but no one was interested. It then fell to Lorna Marshall to conduct ethnographic interviews and compile fieldnotes, despite the fact that she had no formal anthropological training.
During the 1960s and 1970s, Marshall published numerous articles on !Kung culture and religion. Her first book, The !Kung of Nyae Nyae, was published in 1976 to positive reviews including one by Alan Barnard, who called Marshall “one of the most sensitive, meticulous and unpretentious ethnographers of all time.” Marshall enjoyed a long career, publishing her second book, Nyae Nyae !Kung Beliefs and Rites, in 1999 when she was 101. In addition to written ethnography, Lorna Marshall also collaborated on several ethnographic films about the !Kung of Nyae Nyae with her son, John Kennedy Marshall (1932–2005), a documentary and ethnographic filmmaker”.