The non-click language families include 10 language families:
1. Indo-European: This family includes numerous languages spoken in Europe, South Asia, and other regions. Examples include English, Spanish, Hindi, Russian, and German.
2. Sino-Tibetan: This family includes languages spoken primarily in East Asia, particularly China and its neighboring countries. Examples include Mandarin, Cantonese, Tibetan, and Burmese.
3. Niger-Congo: This is a large language family primarily found in Sub-Saharan Africa. It includes a wide range of languages such as Swahili, Yoruba, Zulu, Igbo, and Wolof.
4. Afro-Asiatic: This family includes languages spoken in Africa and the Middle East. Examples include Arabic, Amharic, Hausa, Hebrew, and Berber languages.
5. Austronesian: This family includes languages spoken in Southeast Asia, Oceania, and parts of Madagascar. Examples include Indonesian, Tagalog, Malay, Hawaiian, and Maori.
6. Dravidian: This family is mainly spoken in South India and Sri Lanka. Examples include Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, and Malayalam.
7. Altaic (controversial): This is a proposed language family that includes languages spoken in Central Asia, Siberia, and parts of East Asia. Examples include Turkish, Mongolian, Uzbek, and Korean.
8. Uralic: This family includes languages spoken in Northern Eurasia, particularly in Finland, Hungary, and parts of Russia. Examples include Finnish, Hungarian, Estonian, and Sami languages.
9. Austroasiatic: This family includes languages spoken in Southeast Asia and parts of India. Examples include Vietnamese, Khmer, Mon, and Santali.
10. Tai-Kadai: This family includes languages spoken in Southeast Asia, particularly in Thailand and Laos. Examples include Thai, Lao, Zhuang, and Shan.
Scientists think the first language called “proto-human” had click sounds and developed around 112,000 +/- 42,000 years. (source: Science Vol 303 27 February 2004 pp. 1319-1320)
The split between click and non-click languages is believed to have occurred several tens of thousand years ago, between 20,000-30,000 years ago, but it is challenging to determine an exact estimated date. The linguistic evidence suggests that click languages, such as those found in the Khoisan language family of southern Africa and Tanzania are among the most ancient language types. However, pinpointing a specific date for the split between click and non-click languages is difficult due to the lack of written records from that time period.
Linguists have used various methods to study language evolution and the relationships between different language families, including analyzing vocabulary, grammar, and phonetic features. These studies have provided insights into language classification and historical connections but determining precise dates for language splits is still a matter of ongoing research and debate.
Linguistics identified that ideas which were developed before the split of language families into sub-families remained consistent across those high-level proto classifications of humans.
So what I am about to explain will blow your mind.
You probably never knew that non-click language societies in most cases utilized senates (a council of elders) or similar consensus-building structures in their political systems, whether for city-states, confederations or empires.
The examples below demonstrate various historical and cultural contexts across the entire world where such systems were employed:
• The kingdom of the Buddha (India) before he became an ascetic: The political system of this ancient Indian kingdom is believed to have involved a council of ministers or advisors who assisted in decision-making.
• Xia, Shang, and Zhou Dynasties (China): These dynasties in ancient China had hierarchical systems of government, with kings or emperors who were supported by councils of ministers or advisors who played significant roles in governance and decision-making.
• Athens (Greece, Europe): Athens is known for its democratic system of government where a popular assembly and various councils, including the Council of 500, played important roles in decision-making.
• Parliament (England): The English Parliament, which dates back to the 13th century, is an example of a representative assembly where members deliberated and made political decisions.
• Roman Empire (Italy): The Roman Empire had various governing bodies, including the Senate, which played a significant role in legislative and administrative affairs.
• Holy Roman Empire (France/Germany, Europe): The Holy Roman Empire had a complex political structure, with a combination of feudal and elective elements, involving princes, bishops, and other nobles in decision-making processes.
• Oromo (Gadaa system): The Oromo people of Ethiopia have a traditional political system known as the Gadaa system, which includes a council of elders who participate in decision-making and governance.
• Wolof Kingdom (West Africa): The Wolof Kingdom, located in present-day Senegal, had a centralized political system with a king and council of advisors who assisted in governing the kingdom.
• Oyo Mesi, Oyo Empire (West Africa): The Oyo Empire, in what is now southwestern Nigeria, had a political structure that included the Oyo Mesi, a council of chiefs and elders who held significant political power and advised the Alaafin (king).
• Xhosa local council of elders and confederation of Xhosa clans (Southern Africa): The Xhosa people in Southern Africa traditionally had a system where local councils of elders played a role in decision-making, and a confederation of clans allowed for collective decision-making on broader issues.
• Tiv local council of elders and confederation of Tiv towns (Western Africa): The Tiv people in present-day Nigeria had a decentralized political system that involved local councils of elders representing various towns and clans.
• Kingdom of Goryeo: The Goryeo Kingdom was a Korean kingdom that existed from 918 to 1392. Its political system featured a centralized monarchy with a king as the supreme ruler. The king had advisors and ministers who assisted in governance and decision-making.
• Kingdom of Silla: The Silla Kingdom, another ancient Korean kingdom, lasted from 57 BCE to 935 CE. It initially had a more decentralized political system, with power held by local nobles and regional leaders. However, it eventually transitioned into a centralized monarchy with a king who held significant authority.
• Chola dynasty: The Chola dynasty was a South Indian dynasty that flourished from the 9th to the 13th centuries. The political system of the Chola dynasty was characterized by a strong monarchy, with the king being the central authority. The king had a council of ministers and officials who assisted in governance and administration.
• Kingdom of Denmark’s Earls: The Kingdom of Denmark, during certain periods of its history, was ruled by earls who held significant political power. These earls, also known as jarls, were influential nobles who governed specific regions within the kingdom. They played a role in decision-making and administration, often advising the king.
• Japan was ruled by an emperor as a ceremonial religious representative of the gods, a military prime minister called the shogun and a military council of generals. In feudal Japan, the shogunate system was a form of government where the shogun, a military commander, held the real power and served as the de facto ruler. The shogun was appointed by the emperor, but the emperor’s role was largely ceremonial. The shogun held authority over the military and governed the country with the assistance of a council of generals or advisors known as the “shogunate council” or “shogunate government.” The council of generals advised the shogun on military, political, and administrative matters, playing a crucial role in decision-making and governance. They helped the shogun maintain control over the country, manage territorial divisions, and enforce the shogunate’s policies. The shogunate system lasted for several centuries in Japan, with different shoguns and councils holding power during different periods.
• Mongol empire: The council of elders for the Mongols was known as the “Kurultai” or “Qurultay.” The Kurultai was a gathering of Mongol tribal and clan leaders, nobles, and influential individuals who would come together to make important decisions, elect leaders, and discuss matters of significance for the Mongol Empire. The Kurultai played a crucial role in the governance and decision-making process of the Mongols, particularly during the selection of new khans or important policy decisions. It served as a platform for consultation, consensus-building, and the expression of different viewpoints within the Mongol society.
• Iroquois Great Law of Peace (North Americans): The Great Law of Peace, also known as the Constitution of the Iroquois Confederacy, is a foundational document of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) people. It outlines a system of governance based on principles of peace, equity, and collaboration. According to the Great Law, the Iroquois Confederacy consists of six nations, each represented by clan mothers and sachems. Decision-making occurs through a consensus-based process, where representatives discuss and deliberate important matters. The Great Law emphasizes the importance of maintaining harmony, resolving conflicts peacefully, and promoting the well-being of the people and the natural world. It is a testament to the Iroquois’ sophisticated political and social organization, serving as a model for inclusive governance and sustainable relationships with the land and each other.
• Aztec Empire (Mesoamerica): The Aztecs had a council of elders known as the “Tlatocan.” This council was composed of respected individuals from different noble families who held significant positions within the Aztec society. The Tlatocan served as an advisory body to the ruler of the Aztec Empire, providing guidance and counsel on matters of governance, law, and administration. They played a crucial role in decision-making processes, particularly in matters related to warfare, taxation, justice, and the overall welfare of the empire. The council of elders drew upon their experience, wisdom, and knowledge of Aztec traditions to offer insights and recommendations to the ruler. Their participation ensured the involvement of different perspectives and helped maintain social order and harmony within the Aztec civilization.
• Inca Empire (South America): The Inca Empire had a council of elders known as the “Apu Runas.” These elders played a significant role in the governance and decision-making processes of the Inca society. The Apu Runas consisted of respected individuals from various regions and social classes who were chosen for their wisdom, experience, and knowledge of Inca traditions. They advised the Inca ruler, the Sapa Inca, on matters pertaining to administration, justice, and societal issues. The council of elders acted as a consultative body, offering guidance and expertise to ensure the well-being and prosperity of the empire. Their collective wisdom and input were highly valued and considered vital in maintaining the stability and harmony of Inca society.
• Council of elders (Biblical Israel): Post-exodus Israel was designed by Moses to be a council of 12 elders without a king. *
These examples highlight the diverse ways in which non-click language societies have organized their political systems, often incorporating structures that promote consensus-building and participation in decision-making.
* In the Bible, we find references to the establishment of a council of elders in post-exodus Israel. While the specific mention of Moses designing such a council without a kingdom may not be explicitly stated, there are passages that describe the formation and functioning of a council of elders within the Israelite community. Here are a few examples:
1. Exodus 18:13-26: In this passage, Moses’ father-in-law Jethro advises him to delegate his responsibilities by appointing capable leaders to assist him in judging the people. Jethro suggests selecting “able men who fear God, men of truth, those who hate dishonest gain” to serve as rulers over thousands, hundreds, fifties, and tens. This indicates a hierarchical structure within the community, with Moses overseeing a council of elders who would help in administering justice.
2. Numbers 11:16-17: When the burden of leadership became overwhelming for Moses, God instructed him to gather seventy men from the elders of Israel, whom He would fill with His Spirit. These seventy elders were chosen to share the responsibility of leadership with Moses and assist in governing the people.
3. Deuteronomy 1:9-18: Moses recounts how he appointed leaders from each tribe as heads over the people, judges, and officers. These leaders were responsible for hearing disputes, rendering judgments, and maintaining justice within the community.
These passages provide evidence of the establishment of a council or group of elders in post-exodus Israel to assist Moses in governing and making decisions. The concept of a council of elders without a singular king or kingdom is present in these biblical accounts.
You will find this has been a logical demonstration of the political systems of non-click language societies, which explores the presence of consensus-building structures, such as councils of elders, in their governance. By examining historical and cultural contexts from various regions around the world, you can identify similarities and differences in political systems and understand how these societies organized themselves without relying on ideas from the click languages family.
The examples I provided demonstrate that non-click language societies have utilized councils of elders or similar structures in their political systems. These systems vary in their organization and level of centralization, ranging from hierarchical systems with kings or emperors supported by councils of ministers to decentralized systems where local councils of elders represent different towns or clans. These councils played important roles in decision-making, governance, and advising the rulers.
The inclusion of examples from different parts of the world and different time periods provides a comprehensive overview of the prevalence of consensus-building structures in non-click language societies. It suggests that such systems were common and valued in various cultures, emphasizing the significance of collective decision-making and the involvement of multiple perspectives.
Furthermore, the reference to the council of elders in post-exodus Israel, as described in the Bible, adds another dimension to the discussion. While the exact design of the council is not explicitly stated, there are passages that suggest the formation and functioning of a council of elders within the Israelite community. These elders were responsible for assisting Moses in judging the people, sharing the burden of leadership, and maintaining justice.
Overall, studying the political systems of non-click language societies and the presence of consensus-building structures enhances our understanding of diverse governance models throughout history and across different cultures.