Excerpt from The Food of Certain American Indians and Their Methods of Preparing It
The theory that a man is what he eats can hardly be said to account for all the phenomena that attended the progress of the human race from savagery to civilization, and yet there is truth eno... ugh in it to justify an examina tion into the food supply of any people whose position in the scale of development may become a subject of inquiry. Especially is this true of savage and barbarous peoples, or rather it will apply to any people - ourselves for example - in the early phases of existence 3 for within certain limits, there is believed to be no surer indicator of the different culture periods through which the race has progressed, than can be found in the arts of subsistence as they have been successively developed. Between the fruit and nut diet to which primeval man is supposed to have been limited, and the luxurious dinner table of his civilized descendant, there was a long and wearisome journey; and looking back over the record, we find it divided into certain steps or stages, of which the hunter, the herdsman and the farmer may be considered as living embodiments.
Useful as is this classification, it is arbitrary, and so far as it is based upon only one of the many lines of develop ment along which the race must move, it is incomplete. So, too, there are instances in which, owing to what Morgan1 terms the unequal endowment of the two hemispheres in the way of animal and plant life, it is inapplicable. On the other hand, it possesses the merit of describing states of society that are not only not imaginary.
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