It would be an overgeneralization to say that systemic "barter economies" never existed, they would probably emerge at certain instances like the case you've mentioned, though this article focuses on pre-tokenized economies. Still, the premise of this "gift economy" seemed shallow as described by the article. In a survivalist community, free and equitable distribution would be essential for the survival of said community; I'd assume each member had a certain task to accomplish (e.g. carpenter, food gatherer, fisher... etc.) in a way that makes them dependent on each other. So it's not in the proper sense bartering, since one isn't exchanging his services for another fixed commodity but is instead continuously and indefinitely providing; but nor is it a simple gift because of the interdependence of the members.
The Barter Economy is a Lie ENG (scribe.rip)
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