Gemsbok Bean & Kalahari Truffle: Traditional plant use by Jul'hoansi in North-Eastern Namibia, by Arno Leffers
From Gemsbok Bean & Kalahari Truffle: Traditional plant use by Jul'hoansi in North-Eastern Namibia, by Arno Leffers, the following text is taken from the preface.
The field of ethnobotany has received increasing attention over the last decades and has not only contributed substantially to the documentation and preservation of indigenous knowledge, but also increased the awareness of the need for the sustainable use and conservation of natural resources. Indigenous knowledge which has been accumulated over millennia is in steady decline, and valuable information is at risk of being lost within a few generations. For that reason, a central objective of this book is to preserve this knowledge as an integral element of the cultural heritage of the Jul'hoansi and to make it available for locally adapted resource management strategies. Although the book is intended primarily for Jul'hoansi teachers and students and those active or interested in resource management and indigenous plant use in the area, the information on the medicinal properties of plants could be relevant for local health care facilities, while it will no doubt also be of use to ecotourists. Since the focus falls on a people and an area that are often overlooked by tourists and travel agencies in favour of less remote, more accessible national parks and other tourist attractions, it could contribute to promoting ecotourism to the benefit of both local communities and the Namibian tourism sector as whole. Ethnobotanic trails managed by local communities can reveal secrets of nature invisible to the uninformed eye. Sitting around a camp fire and listening to traditional healers, bow hunters and fruit gatherers will afford the visitor an insight into the wisdom and spiritual heritage of the Jul'hoansi, handed down over generations. The information on traditional plant use contained in this book was documented and interpreted after intensive consultations with local plant users and was reviewed by botanical experts. However, the reader should bear in mind that traditional plant use and naming show a high degree of variation from village to village - even from individual to individual. For that reason, this documentation should not be considered to be comprehensive, but rather be seen as an attempt to provide some insight into the unique, deeply rooted and intense relationship between the Jul'hoansi people and their natural environment. Using Gemsbok Bean & Kalahari Truffle: Traditional plant use by Jul'hoansi in North-Eastern Namibia by Arno Leffers, demands neither specialised knowledge nor a botanical background. It does not contain identification keys or comprehensive species descriptions. Rather, it is designed as an illustrated field guide that provides essential botanical information, visual impressions of the rich flora of the region, and additional information on local plant use. I hope that this book will contribute to a better understanding of how the Jul'hoansi utilise their environment, and that it will stimulate further activities in the region in the field of ethnobotany, community-based resource management and ecotourism that can help to preserve the vast store of indigenous knowledge for forthcoming generations.
This is an excerpt from Gemsbok Bean & Kalahari Truffle: Traditional plant use by Jul'hoansi in North-Eastern Namibia, by Arno Leffers.
Title: Gemsbok Bean & Kalahari Truffle
Sutbtitle: Traditional plant use by Jul'hoansi in North-Eastern Namibia
Author: Arno Leffers
Support: Deutscher Entwicklungshilfedienst
Publisher: Gamsberg Macmillan
Windhoek, Namibia 2003 (reprinted 2008)
ISBN: 999160491X / ISBN 9-99-160491-X
ISBN 9789991604916 / ISBN 978-9-99-160491-6
Softcover, 15 x 21 cm, 202 pages, 450 colour photo
Leffers, Arno im Namibiana-Buchangebot
Gemsbok Bean & Kalahari Truffle introduces to the traditional plant use by Jul'hoansi in North-Eastern Namibia.