Tue, 7 Mar 1995 21:47:55 -0600

I sympathize with your thoughts and agree in part, but you have to rid yourself
of those "noble savage" beliefs. I've heard it said, and I concur, that Marx
didn't know a whole lot about "primitive" peoples. ;-) Homo sapiens may have
lived a more equitable existence in the past, but I don't believe we ever lived
in total tranquility.

There was a good (fairly good) show on PBS a few months back called "In Search
of the Noble Savage" (or something to that effect?) that investigated just this
phenomenon. Archaeologists are coming up with evidence of deforestation in New
Mexico and hundreds of buffalo killed and wasted for the meat of a few in some
"buffalo drops" (i.e. cliffs) in the Dakotas. I think it is safe to say that
we humans haven't changed much but the SYSTEM in which we operate sure has.

Getting back to the effects of capitalism, I think anyone we a rational mind hasto agree that capitalism does not take to subsistence-based economies very well.Your right, capitalism is killing off the indigenous peoples of this planet and
I am committed to stop it. Anthropology has turned me into a socialist, and thereluctance of many of my colleagues to admit what is apparent can be
disconcerting. In fact, so disconcerting that after I finish my M.A. I will
probably leave the field. (Ethnography is for imperialists.)

I believe Ghandi had it right when he said, "The earth can satisfy every man's
need but not every man's greed."

In Solidarity,

James Benthall
Dept. of Anthropology
University of Houston
Houston, Texas