Which life would you prefer, the Paleolithic Hunter-Gathers or the early settled Neolithic farmers and why?
The choices offered are not the best, obviously, but given the choice, one would obviously prefer the life of the neolithic farmer. The Neolithic age represented substantial progress in human development. Tools and weapons were more refined and sophisticated, dwellings were more or less permanent, and there was generally a surplusage of food and specialization of labor. In contrast, the hunter/gatherer was forced to forage and/or hunt in search for food. He often followed game animal migrations in hopes of securing sufficient food; but starvation was a real and present danger. There was no method of storing food, no specialization, and tools/weapons were quite simplistic. Survival was a full time job; one was subject to exposure to the elements with only rudimentary shelter at best. The neolithic farmer could not only specialize, but did not live from one day to the next. He also enjoyed dwellings and structures which provided some degree of protection from the vicissitudes of nature.