Let me begin, then, with the portrayal of the savage hunter-gatherer in Western literature.1 There are countless instances, especially in the writings of nineteenth-century anthropologists, of pronouncements to the effect that hunter-gatherers ‘live like animals’ or ‘live little better than animals’. Remarks of this kind carry force only in the context of a belief that the proper destiny of human beings is to overcome the condition of animality to which the life of all other creatures is conﬁned. Darwin, for example, found nothing shocking, and much to marvel at, in the lives of non-human animals, yet his reaction on encountering the native human inhabitants of Tierra del Fuego, during his round-theworld voyage in the Beagle, was one of utter disgust. ‘Viewing such men’, he conﬁded to his journal, ‘one can hardly make oneself believe that they are fellow-creatures and inhabitants of the same world’ (Darwin 1860: 216). It was not just that their technical inferiority left them completely at the mercy of their miserable environment; they also had no control over their own impulses and desires, being by nature ﬁckle, excitable and violent. ‘I could not have believed’, Darwin wrote, ‘how wide was the difference between savage and civilised man; it is greater than between a wild and domesticated animal, inasmuch as in man there is a greater power of improvement’ (1860: 208).