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CENTRAL AFRICAN HUNTER-GATHERER RESEARCH TRADITIONS - page 8 / 43

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Turnbull died in 1994 and for some reason or another he did not train a cohort of graduate students to work with forest foragers, but British social anthropologists studying with other well-known African forager scholars continue to make important contributions to Congo Basin forager ethnography. Jerome Lewis, a student of James Woodburn, provided rich ethnographic descriptions of the Mbenzele Aka (2002) and Justin Kenrick, a student of Alan Barnard, provided insights into Mbuti relations with farmers, and foragers’ views of conservation and other forms of international development (2001).  These two anthropologists disagree with Turnbull’s symbiotic characterizations of forager-farmer relations and are active in efforts to document how Congo Basin foragers are marginalized and how their lands can be protected (Kenrick and Lewis 2001).  

French traditions

France established colonies in the Congo Basin and it has a long and extensive history of research with forest foragers. Serge Bahuchet is the most prominent contemporary French anthropologist conducting research with forest foragers (3 monographs and first author on over 30 journal articles and book chapters on Congo Basin foragers).  Bahuchet wanted to be a zoologist. While in high school in the late 1960s he regularly went to the Natural History Museum in Paris and eventually met Raymond Pujol, an agricultural entomologist who was director of ethnozoology. In 1969 he traveled with Pujol and other students to the Central African Republic to collect zoological specimens. Pujol asked him to do ethnozoology of the “Pygmies” and he went to Kinga, Central African Republic to conduct the study. On his second field trip he met Jacqueline M.C. Thomas, a prominent linguist studying the Aka language; in 1975 she hired him to conduct a short ethnolinguistic study among the Aka. As

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