The Ju/’hoan Bushman origin myth is depicted as a contextual frame for their healing and transformative ways. Using Recursive Frame Analysis, these performances are shown to be an enactment of the border crossing between First and Second Creation, that is, pre - linguistic and linguistic domains of experience. Here n/om, or the presumed creative life force, is infused into the community. As the Ju/’hoan Bushmen struggle to maintain their way of life in the face of economic and political change, they are likely to increasingly come into contact with social service and other aid programs. Any future for social work with the Bushmen is served by an understanding of how they relate to n/om. In particular, supporting Bushman communities requires highlighting the importance of the way changing forms arise in their recurrent mythological border crossings, the heart of Bushman transformative experience.


Ju/’hoan Bushmen, Recursive Frame Analysis, Puberty Rites, Storytelling, Healing, Transformative Experience, Social Work

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