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Published on Sep 22, 2007
A photograph of man, as he existed 50,000 years ago. That is how long the Bushmen, the most ancient people of southern Africa, have lived in the Kalahari Desert as hunters-gatherers, maintaining their culture to the present day.
Their only concession to the 21st century has been to wear clothes. Among those who conform most to the image of a people who live in complete harmony with nature are the Juhoansi. In the language of the Bushmen, "Juhoansi" means "the real people". The first Europeans in southern Africa, however, called them "Bushmen" and proceeded to wipe out 200,000 of them in 200 years. They sold them in slave markets and to travelling circuses. This merciless hunting down was continued by neighbouring tribes of Namibia. Today, they represent the last link with our own past at a time when man had not yet domesticated animals or engaged in agriculture.