With about two minutes of research:

Sahlins’ argument partly relies on studies undertaken by McCarthy and McArthur in Arnhem Land, and by Richard Borshay Lee among the !Kung. These studies show that hunter-gatherers need only work about fifteen to twenty hours a week in order to survive and may devote the rest of their time to leisure.[4] Lee did not include food preparation time in his study, arguing that “work” should be defined as the time spent gathering enough food for sustenance.[5] When total time spent on food acquisition, processing, and cooking was added together, the estimate per week was 44.5 hours for men and 40.1 hours for women, but Lee added that this is still less than the total hours spent on work and housework in many modern Western households.[5]

So, what’s at the core of these guesstimates is (unsurprisingly) how one defines “work”. Lee decided that only food acquisition was work; I quite agree, if every other backbreaking task that a primitive had to engage in was NOT defined as “work”, then they didn’t work that much. Although I suspect the primitive himself would disagree.

At any rate, food acquisition, processing, and cooking was estimated as two full time jobs; and of course, if your wife was occupied with children, some of her ours got loaded onto the man, one expects.

NOW you get to add in time spent finding, building, or maintaining shelter, time spent gathering raw materials which are then used for the creation of clothing and other sorts of sheltering activities, and the maintenance thereof.

Then, there’s time spent caring for children and the elderly, although there’s a lot of grey area there between what’s “work” and what’s leisure.

And all that, of course, assumes that the tribals under discussion are not migratory or nomadic. In that case you’d have to add in (in the former case) time spent uprooting, migrating, and re-rooting, and in the latter case, the added complication of not having the ability to sow and reap.

And then, of course, we’re assuming year-round temperate climates. Winters, droughts, and the like have the ability to change the equation, and not in a good way.

Sounds exhausting to me. :-)

So, when you add all that up, your original claim of It’s said for the first 190,000 years Homo Sapiens existed on the planet, we lounged for 12 hours a day socializing seems like a bit of a rough cut which ignores a substantial number of life activities which were, well, somewhat more difficult than indolence.

I do recall one article which estimated that (I believe it referred to the prehistoric migration from the Scandinavian region to what today is far eastern Russia) that the migratories were estimated to have spent 80% of their waking hours on food acquisition alone.

Data Driven Econophile. Muslim, USA born. Been “woke” 2x: 1st, when I realized the world isn’t fair; 2nd, when I realized the “woke” people are full of shit.

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