Gender Roles in Economics

Waorani men were generally hunters, warriors, and killers, and women were gardeners and caretakers of infants, but men felled trees for garden plots and sometimes harvested manioc and other products, and women hunted when the opportunity presented itself and often accompanied men on long hunting expeditions. Both sexes fished and gathered other forest products such as honey and chonta palm fruit. Both sexes took care of children and taught them subsistence activities. Although some men and women were recognized for particular skill in one or another subsistence-related activity (e.g., making hammocks or blowguns, hunting, etc.), there was no marketing or trade of these items, and each family made their own household products and provided for themselves. Men were sometimes away from the settlement on hunting or raiding expeditions, but these were usually of 1-2 weeks duration, and women often accompanied men on hunts and raids. Some women have killed, although this was not common. Property was not "owned" in the Western sense of the word, although kin groups had recognized rights to the areas in which they lived and to particular areas for harvesting the fruit from the chonta palms they had planted. Such rights were maintained by continuous habitation and use of these areas. Women had exclusive rights to the gardens they planted and tended and to the products of their labors, and to the meat their husbands hunted (J. A. Yost & J. Regalado, personal communication). Household contents were considered the exclusive property of the people living there, although sometimes such items were stolen during raids. The Waorani fiercely defended the territory they considered theirs—traditionally south of the Napo River and north of the Curaray River—from all kowodi, whom they simply killed should trespass occur. The uncontacted

Waorani groups have sporadically killed trespassing kowodi as recently as October 2001.

Pregnancy And Childbirth

Pregnancy And Childbirth

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