Read sources A and B
Writing in the 1850s, GC Barnes gave the following description of the Gujjars of Kangra:
‘In the hills, the Gujjars are exclusively a pastoral tribe—they cultivate scarcely at all.
The Gaddis keep flocks of sheep and goats and the Gujjars, wealth consists of buffaloes.
These people live in the skirts of the forests and maintain their existence exclusively by the sale of the milk, ghee and other produce of their herds. The men graze the cattle and tend their herds.
The women went to the markets every morning with baskets on their heads, with little earthen pots filled with milk, butter-milk and ghee, each of these pots containing the proportion required for a day’s meal.
During the hot weather, the Gujjars usually drive their herds to the upper range, where the buffaloes rejoice in the rich grass which the rains bring forth and at the same time, attain condition from the temperate climate and the immunity from venomous flies that torment their existence in the plains’.
The accounts of many travellers tell us about the life of pastoral groups. In the early 19th century, Buchanan visited the Gollas during his travel through Mysore. He wrote: 'Their families live in small villages near the skirt of the woods, where they cultivate a little ground and keep some of their cattle, selling in the towns the produce of the dairy.
Their families are very numerous, seven to eight young men in each being common. Two or three of these attend the flocks in the woods, while the remainder cultivate their fields and supply the towns with firewood and with straw for thatch.
Now answer the following questions
(a) Write briefly about what they tell you about the nature of the work undertaken by men and women in pastoral households.
(b) Why do you think pastoral groups often live on the edges of forests?
Read sources A and B
(a) In the case of the pastoralists of the hills, the Gaddis and the Gujjars, the men used to graze the cattle, sheep or goats and remained away from the home for many days. The women used to sell the milk products like milk, butter-milk and ghee in the local market place everyday.
Regarding the Gollas in Mysore, besides being pastoralists, they were also cultivating land. So, some men were taking out the cattle for grazing while some men cultivated the fields and supply the town with firewood and straw for thatch.
(b) Pastoral groups often lived near the edges of forests, so that they could graze their flocks of animals in the forest as well as cultivate fields next to the forest area.
They were selling the milk and milk products from the animals in the local market and also cultivating land for their requirements of food. By living on the edge of forests, both of these activities were easily handled by them.