Nomads & The Outside World
Cambridge University Press: 1984. First edition. Hardcover in a jacket. Near fine, with marginalia on a single page. From the library of Harry Berger, Jr.
"All ways in which nomads subjugate or conquer sedentary societies can be regarded as a form of political adaptation to the outside sedentary world. They all involve a transformation of the sociopolitical backwardness of nomads into a military advantage, that is a strong, mass and mobile military organization united by the prospects of exploiting an agricultural and urban population. This guarantees nomads an uninterrupted and unhampered supply of agricultural and handicraft products on the non-economic basis which is most profitable to them. These supplies are acquired in various ways. The most typical and widespread are the following:
Direct irregular and uncontrolled pillage. If the conquest of sedentary territories is not a short-term episode and nomads wish to further establish their supremacy over the conquered population, such pillaging cannot last long. Amongst the nomad leaders there are always those who realize that the goose which lays the golden egg should not be slain. Admittedly, they are not always able to act this way at the apposite moment."