A Novel – In One Page Per Day
Day 144, Thursday
May 24th, 2018
Chapter Four: Tribe
There was safety in the tribe, and the ability to test one’s self through competition with peers.
There was jealousy, yes, and envy. There were customs and taboos that were well established, intending to prevent such things from having a deleterious impact on the life of the group, on its cohesion
There were shared customs, and stories, and rituals in the tribe, things that shaped both the structure of the tribe, and its future. The narratives they spun taught all of its members the means by which they could advance, redress wrongs, recover from injury, hold fast to their position.
The tribal life was essentially democratic, the members of the tribe could come and go as they pleased. There were no laws binding them to their place, there was only duty, obligation, the expectation of those who depended on you.
It was only when the migrations ended, and the tribes became fixed into villages and hamlets, that the notion that people could be treated like property advanced and class sytems became entrenched.
During the time of migrations, men and women were essentially equal, neither was the property of the other, the concept of ownership was alien and everyone had a say in the destiny of the group.
The tribe might be governed by a chief, there could be a de facto leader, especially in times of conflict. That person was more often than not merely the voice of the people, the arbiter, the mediator, the negotiator, and a judge.
In place of the single leader, more often than not, a council of elders held sway over the life of the tribe. The tribe did what it could to give every person a voice, to be inclusive. Everyone was a part of the whole.
Then there were the others.
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