Mopane vegetation, which is characterized by the dominance of Colophospermum mopane, is distributed through arid to semi-arid areas of southern Africa. It is widely recognized that the physiognomy of mopane includes both tree and shrub forms, but in the arid part of Namibia, less is known about the characteristics of the vegetational landscape, including the mopane tree's morphology, than other areas. The purpose of this study is to reveal the characteristics of the vegetational landscape with special reference to the physiognomy of Colophospermum mopane. As a result of my fi eld survey, the mopane that dominates this area can be divided into a short, multi-stemmed type and a tall, single-stemmed type. Each type has a specifi c distribution. Short, multi-stemmed mopane grew densely in hilly and mountainous areas, while tall, single-stemmed mopane trees sparsely dominated on the fl oodplain and near ephemeral riverbed. Because short, shrub-type mopane provides a resource for feeding goats, the dense growth of short, shrub-type mopane may play an important role in livestock farming in this area.
The purpose of this study is to clarify the impact of termite mounds on the vegetation of mopane (Colophospermum mopane) savanna in Northwestern Namibia. This area is a part of a mopane zone with a high distribution of termite mounds. Much previous research on termite mounds has been conducted in humid tropical areas. Such studies have found termite mounds to have high fertility and thus to be a key factor in vegetation dynamics. Few studies, however, have focused on the relationship between termite mounds and vegetation in arid or semi-arid areas, and the impact of the mounds on savanna vegetation remains unclear. In the area where I conducted research, almost all termite mounds were found together with trees. The composition of tree species on the mounds reflected the composition in the surrounding vegetation, but Combretum spp. dominated slightly more than other species. The rate of withered trees, especially Terminalia prunioides, was higher on the mounds than on the ground. Moreover, termite mounds were extracted as one of the parameters of tree withering from a statistical model analysis using a generalized linear model (GLM). As a result of this study, termite mounds appeared to act as negative factors in vegetation growth on or near the mounds. The mounds should, therefore, be taken into account as one of the factors that disturb vegetation dynamics in mopane savanna.
In Kampala, the capital city in Uganda, people enjoy popular entertainment show called karioki, which is performed on stage in restaurants and bars with popular music at night. It has become a craze during the last 10 years. It is performed by groups of about 15 men and women in their mid-teens to mid-20s.
This article attempts to characterize the social relationships among Kampala youth through karioki. First, it examines the social backgrounds of karioki performers and shows how a variety of youth participate in karioki. Second, it makes clear how they form groups in order to perform karioki shows. Third, it describes how a particular day's performers are determined, and how they make their program.
It was found that karioki performers do not form exclusive groups. They move easily from one group to another, and sometimes they quit karioki itself, later returning without any difficulty. Their grouping is ‘open' and temporary, and they take it for granted that they will not develop strong feelings of identity and discipline. They are able to adjust themselves impromptu to abrupt changes in membership of the day's performers, as well as unrehearsed alterations in their program.
This article discusses these features of Kampala youth's social relationships in the light of contemporary subculture studies. It concludes that Kampala youth form highly fluid groups, and their social relationships are always “unsettled” and instantly created without the participants having identity and/or attributes.
This paper demonstrates “care” in rural society through describing the ethnography of people with physical disabilities living in South-eastern Cameroon. Currently, the term “care” is used in a variety of contexts. In Japan, it has taken on new meaning based on the process of social change that involves leaving family care to society or the government, which is referred to as the “socialization of care”. Most studies of “care” focus on the caregiver, while few studies examine the recipients. Some research has indicated that the relationship between recipients and providers of care is some major disparities embodying the power system, and that the recipients of care are socially disadvantaged. Nevertheless, I argue that it is possible to make the transition from recipient of “care” as a disadvantaged member of society to one who proactively accesses society (as demander).
In this paper, I reconsider “care” as the activities and relationships involved in meeting the requirements of people with disabilities, together with the customary framework and social composition within which these are assigned and carried out in their communities. First, I provide an overview of how “disability” is recognized in a rural society and then I examine individual experiences of having an incurable illness. Next, I examine how the subsistence activities of individuals fit into the local community, based on its social composition and the lifestyle at the study site. Finally, I clarify how their daily practices are built on connections with their family or members of the community.
By examining how care is practiced in the community in Thailand from the perspective of people with disabilities (PWDs), this paper attempts to trace how “disability” enhances communication between PWDs and people in the community, and how it organizes the human network towards formation of a new community that shares commonality and sociality.
PWDs have needs for care which the public care system does not sufficiently support. The more severe their disability, the greater will be demand for care to meet their basic daily care needs. Therefore, most Thais with disabilities who live in a community depend on care given by family or neighbors. It is not uncommon in Thai society for family take care of a disabled member with the cooperation of a wider network of kin. In addition to family support, most PWDs can utilize inexpensive community services. Thus, PWDs live closely with people in the community.
In my investigation in Thailand, however, the role of “care” is not only in providing services for PWDs. It also functions as a tool for building relationships between PWDs and people in the community, as well as among PWDs. Through the practice of care, PWDs construct new relationships and re-define what they can and can not do. This means that disability no longer depends solely on the physical condition of PWDs, but rather that it must be defined as being created in the social processes involving both the PWDs and the surrounding environment.
Relationships among PWDs as well as between PWDs and non-PWDs are based on the fact of “disability.” Due to this common premise, PWDs and community members can have basic communication, and PWDs can gain care from them smoothly. In their community, PWDs manage their life and getting care by using disability as a skill of communication. Through cooperative activities of care, PWDs are creating a new community by sharing the common experience of disability and care, extending the practice of care into the public sphere.
Today, there are roughly two hundred elders' homes in Sri Lanka. Except for three governmental institutions, all the others are private homes run mostly by philanthropic actors. These institutions are dependent on neighboring supporters in its daily provision of free meals and other equipment conceptualized as dāna, or unreciprocated generous giving, which also accompanies memorial service by the inmates for the deceased kin of the givers. This article is a genealogical study of such philanthropic elders' homes in Sri Lanka. While previous studies have discussed the rise of elders' homes within the context of Westernization and modernization, this article attempts to trace a historical account of its birth and formation in colonial/post-colonial context. By investigating both the rise of the colonial elites who established such institutions, and the establishment of its own unique fund-raising system through dāna, I try to reveal the process of indigenization of Christian charity into a more locally nuanced practice. Two main impacts will be discussed as a result of indigenization; one being the socialization of institution through gift-giving and interaction between the inmates and neighbors, and the other being the supposed alteration of memorial ritual with expanded interpretation regarding the time and the object for such practices.
Kaoru Sugihara, Shuichi Kawai, Yasuyuki Kono, Akio Tanabe eds. In Search of Sustainable Humanosphere: A New Paradigm for Humanity, Biosphere and Geosphere. Kyoto: Kyoto University Press, 2010, 427 p. +xx
Junko Maruyama. Central Kalahari San, Living through a Transition: Amid Development Program and Indigenous Peoples’ Movement. Kyoto: Sekaishisosha, 2010, 352 p.