American Anthropologist 1888

Babcock, W. H. Games of Washington Children. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol. 1: 243-284. In this article, Babcock describes the song and dance accompanying the games of Washington children. In most cases, they have been explained by the children themselves. Where relevant, Babcock clarifies and analyzes the origin of these games and is quick to point out any discrepancies or distortions. He is able to trace their various beginnings back to Virginia, New York and as far away as England. Babcock reports on a hundred or so different games, separating them into categories based on their varying structures.

Babcock begins with ring games noting that they are often derived from the themes of love, courtship, marriage and “the delightfulness of living.” Usually the games begin with a player standing in the middle with the others surrounding the player in a ring singing and dancing. Appropriate actions accompany each of the games stanzas (as is the case for all of the categories of games). He then moves on to vis a vis games which require that two groups face one another in order to call back and forth to each side. Essentially, they are question and response games. Archway games are next and can be sufficiently described through the familiar “London Bridge.” It is interesting to note that the game has its origin in the “pre-Christian belief of malevolent beings who destroyed bridges and could be propitiated only by human sacrifice.” In addition, child-stealing games are abounding “with mythical and savage elements.” These games are believed to be very old and often have a witch, male or female, as the main character. Babcock also mentions the presence of games involving hiding, seeking and the use of toys.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
MEGGAN BLESSING University of Florida (John Moore)

Babcock, W. H. Games of Washington Children. American Anthropologist July, 1888 Vol.1:243-296.

The article “Games of Washington Children” did not confront any real problem. The main purpose of this article was to classify the games of “Washington Children”. W. H. Babcock was able to collect these games by interviewing the children who played them. W. H. Babcock then took these games and organized them into different styles (ring games, archway games, ect.). The author then put the songs that were associated with a game in the same category. In each section he listed a number of examples and described how they were played. These descriptions were brief, and described how the children stood and reacted in the circle they created. W. H. Babcock also had a notes section at the end of his article that discussed the different types of games in more detail.

This article was easy to read. The way W. H. Babcock listed his examples often broke the flow of the reader?s thoughts because they were put in the middle of a paragraph. This happened often since the majority of this article was made up of examples. The purpose of this article was to show how the author organized all of the games that he researched.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
SHAWN LIPSKY Bloomsburg University (Dr. Susan Dauria)

Baker, Frank. Anthropological Notes on the Human Hand. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol.1: 51-74

This article seeks to dispel many popular notions or conceptions of the power of the human hand at the time it was written and before. Many personal stories of healings, witchcraft, and other supernatural powers associated with the hand are discussed and an explanation for their persistence is attempted. The author, a medical doctor, states that perhaps the strong relationship between the will of the mind and its accomplishment by the hand played a role in the attribution of some power to the hand. Historiographical information is then cited, and the proposition is that the hand was somehow conflated with a particular plant said to have curative or analgesic effects. The purpose is to debunk these claims of the supernatural power of hands, as well as the phenomenon of palm or hand reading to gain insight into the person?s personality or future.

The article then takes a somewhat surprising turn, stating that the general form or shape of the hand can be used to accurately describe someone?s personality. The argument is based upon Lamarckian concepts of change or adaptation, and states that because certain emotions correlate with certain hand gestures, an increase in the frequency with which an emotion is felt leads to an increase in the performing of the gesture. The muscles of the hands then adapt due to use, and in time the hand shape when at rest is affected due to the dominance of certain muscles in the hand.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
DAVID HASKELL University of Florida (John Moore)

Baker, Frank. Anthropological Notes on the Human Hand. American Anthropologist Jan, 1888 Vol. (1) 51-76.

In the article Anthropological Notes on the Human Hand, by Dr. Frank Baker, (a professor of Anatomy at the University of Georgetown), he describes various aspects of both the supernatural and factual physical elements of the hand. Baker illustrates the belief that the human hand held mystical and medicinal properties. Also within the article, Dr. Baker describes the scientific information of the hand as well.

Baker discusses the superstitious nature of the human hand as being both a healing charm and a lucky talisman. These superstitions date as far back as ancient Mesopotamia, starting with the hand of St. John the Baptist. People believe that healing “mediums” used were to convey “spiritual influence”. As for the supernatural aspects, Baker goes into about the use of the human hand as a lucky charm via recalling several stories. He gives the example, of Rev. S. Baring Gould?s story of how an enflamed hand brought sleep upon a home and the only way to awaken them was the extinguish the lit hand. Each story recounts similar stories of a hand lit on fire causing sleep throughout the house, where the only way to awake the residents was to put out the flame.

Towards the end of this article, Dr. Baker describes the use of the lines on the surface of the palm and its mystical properties. He illustrates that the lines on the palm have various meanings such as, life line, head line, and heart line that coincide with the persons life. However, Dr. Banks also dispels these “believed attributes” with factual evidence for the causes of creases on palms. The article demonstrates how certain movements of the hand create these particular lines.

This article describes the different properties of the human hand being both supernatural and biological. However, Baker?s article does hint at some conclusions in relations to social status and hand types. In retrospect, however, this article does provide information that is easily comprehendible.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
TOM PEPE Bloomsburg University (Dr. Susan Dauria)

Bates, Henry H. Discontinuities in Nature?s Methods. American Anthropologist Vol.1: 135-146

This article uses an analogy from biological evolution to discuss the changes which produced humans and the changes which have produced higher levels of civilization. Bates believes that in nature, when all permutations of a certain form have been exhausted, the highest degree of complexity among them has been achieved. Nature must resort to what he calls discontinuities to progress further. These discontinuities are radical changes which affect a lower organism, but such changes then allow the completely new organism to achieve a higher level of evolution than was previously possible with only the old forms.

Bates specifically cites two examples in the history of mankind which constitute such a discontinuity. The first is the development of the human species. Having exhausted the possibilities of the role of inheritance and the physical bodies themselves in evolution, mother nature blessed man with the powers of the mind, and these faculties allowed humankind to both use nature for its own purposes and utilize tools other than its anatomy as well as pass on knowledge through the process of learned behavior. This radical development of the brain allowed or mandated that humans would become the most advanced beings on earth.

The second example of a discontinuity in human history is a cultural one. Bates believes that the first form of society was a militant one. Weaponry inevitably led to warfare, which produced social differentiation through competition and conquest. Some developments in the arts and other areas were achieved, although in time this stage was doomed to stagnation. Early industrialism could not survive in a military society, and therefore such societies were incapable of the highest development. Once again a discontinuity was needed. Bates states that like his other discontinuities the source came from a lower level of development, although it is somewhat unclear what this source is. Perhaps it is his curious belief that the invention or re-discovery of gunpowder provided the impetus for further development. This discovery “abolished the overshadowing importance of personal prowess in arms, equalized the powers of offence and resistance, and gave a foothold for industrial organization.” With this and other inventions the caste organizations of militant societies were abolished and the “inventive faculties, thus both emancipated and stimulated by these great discoveries, set out upon a new career of development not here paralleled.”

CLARITY RANKING: 4
DAVID HASKELL University of Florida (John Moore)

Bates, Henry H. Discontinuities in Nature?s Methods. American Anthropologist April 1888 Vol. 1: 135-146.

According to Henry H. Bates, the discontinuity of the evolution of humankind was not caused by the development of “specialized organs”, as was the case for animals. By “specialized organs” the author means physical features of an animal that evolved and became more specialized in order to give that species some competitive advantage over other species. Rather, natural selection affected only the “mental” and “ethnic” qualities of humans, specifically the brain and its structures, which eventually gave rise to the dominance and control of humans over nature and the animal kingdom. He concludes that humans were highly militaristic at the onset of civilization. But the militarism of early civilizations and the societies themselves suffered self-extermination, making way for industrialism. As a result, Bates continues, humans followed a new evolutionary path that included technological inventions and discoveries, such as gunpowder and novel means of locomotion, that pulled humans further and further away from the development of animals to an unparalleled level of “progress” and cultivation. Furthermore, Bates emphasizes that humans have not only evolved physically, but have developed a “psychic” and “moral” superiority unseen among animals.

Here is an ideal example of the unilinear thought of evolution of the late nineteenth century. This article is quite interesting to read, though quite difficult to understand with its theoretical jargon. Nevertheless, this essay by Bates provides a nice opportunity for students, especially those just learning about unilinear evolution and the origins of anthropological thought, to see at which point inquiry and examination of human origins began.

CLARITY: 1
LAUREN MADAK Bloomsburg University (Dr. Susan Dauria)

Brinton, Daniel G. On the Chane-Abal (Four-Language) Tribe and Dialect of Chiapas. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol.1: 77-96.

The article seeks to correct some misconceptions concerning the Chane-Abal people of the town of Comitan, Chiapas, Mexico, and its vicinity, and to place this language and its speakers in their proper ethnological position. Ethnohistorical documents consisting of descriptions of the town and language as well as word lists are the basis upon which the argument is constructed. Brinto states that the proper name of the language is indeed Chane-Abal and not various other corruptions or abridged forms. This name means four languages, and the people of the town also call their language tohol-abal which means “to speak straightly, clearly, distinctly.”

Through the comparison of words from Chane-Abal and the same words in other indigenous languages of Mexico and Guatemala, most of them Maya, a relation of the people of this small area of Chiapas to the other indigenous peoples of the region is proposed. This language has the most in common with the Tzotzil, ?Maya? (it is unclear which Maya language is denoted by this generic term), Tzendal, Cholti, and other Maya languages. The relationship is particularly strong with the languages of nearby Guatemala, and so a migration of the Chane-Abal people from that country or region at some point in the past is proposed.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
DAVID HASKELL University of Florida (John Moore)

Brinton, Daniel G. On the Chane-Abal (Four Language) Tribe and Dialect of Chiapas. American Anthropologist January, 1888 Vol.1 (1) 77-96.

Daniel Brinton, Professor of American Archaeology and Linguistics at the University of Pennsylvania, describes one of the least known Mayan languages: Chane-Abal. This form of Mayan language is native to a remote area of Chiapas, which is a Mexican state. The tribe, in which this dialect is spoken, is quite small and rather isolated from other groups of people. The word Chane-Abal means “Four Languages” because it is derived from four separate languages, which are Zotzil, Casdal, Maya, and Trokek.

Brinton illustrates the origins of the Chane-Abal as sprouting from four other languages that are relatively unknown to most people. However, Brinton cited many other authors as having done research in this area. Dr. Brinton bases the majority of his work from the works of Dr. Karl Hermann Berendt entitled, Vocabulario Comparativo de las Lenguas Zoque de Tuxtla, Zotzil de San BartholomP de los Llanos, Chaneabal de Comitan, per Don JosP Maria Sanchez, Cura de Ocosocantla. Also in this article, cultural traits, as well as phonetics and comparisons, are illustrated to help with the understanding of the language. Brinton includes a vast collection of words, phrases, and other vocabulary for each dialect of the Mayan language. Personal and possessive pronoun are also described within this text, but no sentence structure is given.

Dr. Brinton?s article on the Chine-Abal tribe and language provides the reader with basic literary skills to understand the origin, background, and structure of this language. However, the information provided tended to rely heavily upon previous works, which made it difficult to comprehend.

CLARITY RANKING: 2
TOM PEPE Bloomsburg University (Dr. Susan Dauria)

Hoffman, W. J. Pictography and Shamanistic Rites of the Ojibwa. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol. 1: 209-229.

Hoffman?s ethnographic account of the Ojibwa is based on information obtained first hand by the author in the summer of 1887. The study was confined to the Northern and Northeastern portions of the state of Minnesota. Seeking to describe the ceremonial practices and accompanying pictography of the Ojibwa people, the author relayed primitive customs that relied on pictures for the preservation of ideas.

Settled into distinct factions, the North and the South, the Ojibwa were further divided into tribes on the basis of totems. Following classical unilineal tradition, the Southern Ojibwa were considered to be following “civilized pursuits” (i.e., agriculture), while the Ojibwa in northern Minnesota were regarded as “wild Indians”, thus, receiving little assistance from the government. Furthermore, they had been adverse to adopting the teachings of the missionaries, and choosing to keep the inner workings of their religious practices secret, little was known about Ojibwa cosmology. However, the author was fortunate to converse with chief men who had converted to Christianity and as a result were willing to divulge information regarding the three distinct, secret societies whose members boast the ability to communicate with the various spirits comprising the Ojibwa pantheon.

The rituals involving the Mede, the Jossakeed and the Wabeno can be traced back to the origin myth of the Ojibwa in which the otter migrated from the shores of the “Great Salt Water” and upon reaching his destination, erected the Great Medicine Lodge. In this building ceremonial rituals were performed. Passed down from generation to generation, each lodge possesses mnemonic charts that are unique to each tribe and serve as the chief means for communicating with the spirits. Women are often involved in these secret societies, but their realms are confined to the healing of children and the application of tattoos.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
MEGGAN BLESSING University of Florida (John Moore)

Hoffman, W. J. Pictography and Shamanistic Rites of the Ojibwa. American Anthropologist July 1888 Vol. 1(3):209-230.

W. J. Hoffman?s study of the Ojibwa people focuses on their sacred ritual of healing. Primarily the article is based on Hoffman?s translation of ancestral bark markings, which are a history of the Mede?win, or spiritual healer. These pictures explain how the Mede? receive their gifts from the spirits and explains the process of the ritual.

Hoffman traces their physical and spiritual roots to their present location along the western shore of Lake Michigan. He also includes the locations where the Ojibwa had made camp. The Ojibwa moved west from lake Michigan and their camps were always based near water. These sites were temporary, only being inhabited for a few years. Many of these habitations were reused. Throughout their travels they kept the same basic rituals despite language and other culture changes. Hoffman delves into the exact ritual of healing, describing the roles of the Mede? and the results of their work. He includes a report of a small branch of this healing belief called the Jugglers, which are not respected within the Mede?.

Hoffman continues by recounting his difficulty in translating the pictograms as well as his need of assistance. He concludes with several examples of these diagrams and explains their meaning and content. Almost all these markings include a snake like picture, which represents the Mede? medicine bag, and many animals including the tortoise, bear, and dog, which symbolize wisdom, benevolence, and companionship. There are, however, several different depictions of the same legend.

Hoffman?s article is a logical progression of facts about one specific Ojibwa ritual. His inclusion of the actual pictographs and their translations is helpful. The reader gets a more complete understanding of the ritual and the article is clear and concise.

CLARITY: 5
NADINE LYMAN Bloomsburg University (Dr. Susan Dauria)

Mallery, Garrick. Manners and Meals. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol. 1: 193-207.

Mallery is interested in the origin and history of manners. His intentions are to focus on some of the more curious customs prevalent in civilized society whose roots are anchored in the antiquated past. Dealing primarily in the realm of ceremony, Mallery begins by differentiating among customs, fashions and laws. Whereas fashions are often temporary and serving a special purpose, customs have endured time. Likewise, laws are not the sources of customs, but when prosperous laws can establish conventions that deserve recognition.

Mallery then goes on to discuss the relationship between savagery and high society, the former having little sense of taste with the latter and its epicures evident of civilization. Dinner often serves purposes outside of sustenance. As important business is often negotiated under the agency of dining, the meal becomes a forum for establishing and defining social relations. Mallery relates this to feasting among the ancients, but is quick to mention the lack of conversation present at these feasts. Furthermore, the savages failed to establish regular feeding hours as they pretty much lived in a hand to mouth fashion. Their saving grace is the recognition of a higher being prior to relieving hunger, a custom that at the time of this paper had lost prevalence among contemporary society.

Mallery finishes by acknowledging manners that had their origin in the Middle Ages and traces their evolution into modern times. He reiterates the importance of avoiding vulgarity by pointing out the uncouth coupling of bread and butter. Furthermore, he discusses the origins of the fork, the finger bowl, the tooth-pick and man?s desire to dine alone.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
MEGGAN BLESSING University of Florida (John Moore)

Mallery, Garrick. Manners and Meals. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol. 1(3): 193-208.

This article is an interesting read on little known facts about what has established proper eating rituals of Garrick Mallery?s time, 1888. He is most specific for European and British customs for before the 1880s. He discusses several aspects of what he defines as dining by using traditions. Mallery concludes that “civilized” people dine and that more “primitive man” eats. He contrasts his accounts of “civilized” dining with the practices of other cultures and comes to some ethnocentric conclusions about non-western cultural habits.

Mallery explains the origins of eating utensils. First, he discusses the fork and how it changed. The fork originated in Italy and had, originally, two tines. Eating was messy and therefore considered uncouth. The fork gained popularity when it gained more tines. One could eat smaller foods with ease. It became more manageable to eat politely with a fork, and it soon became a regular piece of silverware. The knife has always been an eating utensil. It is capable of cutting and piercing. Spoons were the last to develop and were invented in order to get soups around the golia, a large neckpiece that was at one time popular in Spain and Italy.

Mallery has written a mini history of his observations and opinions about dining and, while it may be interesting, it is not academic by today?s standards. The work accuses other cultures of “being dirty at the table” and “squatting over their meal”. It is currently inappropriate in anthropology to call a people “savage”. In the end this article is a well written and amusing.

CLARITY: 5
NADINE LYMAN Bloomsburg University (Dr. Susan Dauria).

Mathews, Washington The Prayer of a Navajo Shaman. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol.1: 149-171.

This article is a mostly descriptive one concerning a prayer which a Navajo shaman performed after having told Dr. Matthews the Navajo story of creation and the emergence of people. The purpose of this prayer was to recover a third element of his being or personhood, which is explained as not the body nor the soul, but a spiritual body belonging not only to his living person but also things that pertain to it, such as his fallen hair and the dust of his feet. This element was believed to be held by a witch in a sort of spirit world.

In order to regain this part of himself, the supplicant enlists, through the prayer, the help of first two Navajo war gods and then other peaceful deities. In the course of the prayer the shaman journeys first with the war gods to the place where his spiritual element is being held, and then travels back through the same places, naming them in reverse order. Once the shaman is within sight of his fields and home, he states that the other two peaceful deities accompany him the rest of the way into his own home.

Dr. Matthews provides a translation of the prayer into English along with the words of the shaman in Navajo. At the end of the article the individual Navajo words are translated in a glossary.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
DAVID HASKELL University of Florida (John Moore)

Matthews, Washington The Prayer of a Navajo Shaman. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol. 1: 149-171

This article was about a long prayer in which a Navajo shaman recites when he feels that the evil spirits of witches are trying to attack a person’s third element. The third element was explained to be not a person’s body or soul, but a person’s spiritual body. To recite this prayer, it had to be with deep mind and body concentration. Therefore, only the shaman could do it because he knew exactly how to perform the prayer right. It was very important that the prayer wasn’t ever to be said or wrong or to be interrupted. After the shaman tells Dr. Washington Matthews about the story of creation and the emergence of the people, he then proceeds with the performance of the prayer.

Within the prayer, it shows that the help to regain one’s spiritual body is through the help of the first two Navajo war gods and their peaceful deities. During the prayer, the wise shaman goes to the place where his spiritual body is being held. By the help of the war gods he then travels back through all the same places, while naming them all in reverse order. By the time the shaman returns to is body, he will then speak of the two peaceful deities accompanying him the rest of the way back from his journey.

In this prayer, Dr. Washington Matthews gives a clear translation of the prayer in English underneath the prayer in Navajo. There is also a glossary of Navajo words at the end of the article.

CLARITY: 5
MELANIE ESPERON San Diego Mesa College (Denise Couch)

Meyer, A. B. The Nephrite Question. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol.1:231-242.

Meyer begins by stating that the nephrite or jadeite question is one that has been erroneously perceived as an ethnological problem. World-wide, various objects (i.e., hatchets, jewelry, etc.) have been manufactured from these hard, often green rocks, but their origin is often inexplicable. Popular belief has looked to Asia and Oceania as monopolizing the nephrite and jadeite sources, but upon further scrutiny, Meyer has proven this diffusionist perspective to be untenable. Rather, he turns to local quarries as the sources for the manufacturing of nephrite and jadeite objects.

Meyer then goes on to address the issue of incorporating jadeite into the argument. Based on appearances alone, nephrite and jadeite look virtually identical. Failure on the part of researchers to recognize this has often led to the muddling of data. However, nephrite and jadeite can be distinguished from one another through the analysis of specific gravity, chemical composition and microscopic examination. Furthermore, Meyer takes the time to correct other misconceptions involving the rocks, specifically their classificatory positions.

Historically, nephrite and jadeite have been regarded as precious stones, being found and used in a variety of contexts. This proved to be problematical when looking at Europe and the Americas. Researchers postulated a Roman origin for the European artifacts, but Italy does not have substantial sources of nephrite in its possession. Like wise, citing an Asian origin for the Americas was just as unlikely. As a result, Meyer believed that a local origin was a more plausible answer. Regardless of the fact that no sources had been found in situ in Europe, the author was inclined to believe that there was mounting evidence supporting this notion and could be found if sought for in the right places. In the case of the Americas, Mexico and the Amazon are the likely sources for the nephrite and jadeite objects.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
Meggan Blessing University of Florida (John Moore)

Meyer, Dr. A. The Nephrite Question. American Anthropologist July, 1888 Vol.1:231-242.

The main concern of Dr. Meyers article is that objects from the Americas owe their origins to those in Asia. However, only those objects that were made of nephrite and jadeite. Europe and Asia had nephrite hatchets and sword handles, while America had the same objects as well as necklaces made of nephrite. So the accepted theory in 1888 was that these nephrite objects found in America owe their origins to those in Europe and Asia. Dr. Meyer argues that this is not true. Just because deposits of nephrite and cruder versions of hatchets were found in Asia does not mean that this is where those objects originated.

Dr. Meyer explains how that theory was reached by citing the works and opinions of other professionals in the Anthropological field. The author then explained how these reasons were not strong enough to come to such a conclusion. Just because deposits of nephrite have not been found in the America does not mean that such deposits do not exist. Also just because similar objects were found in Europe does not necessarily mean that Europeans brought these objects to the Americas. It is very plausible that these objects were created in both areas around the same time.

This article was very easy to understand. The only terms used that an undergraduate would not understand were defined at the very beginning of the article.

CLARITY RANKING: 5

SHAWN LIPSKY Bloomsburg University (Dr. Susan Dauria)

Murdoch, John. Dr. Rink?s “Eskimo Tribes.” American Anthropologist 1888 Vol.1 125-133.

In this article Murdoch discusses a book by Dr. Rink concerning the Eskimos of North America. While stating that the book is certainly valuable, he does take issue with some of Dr. Rink?s statements. The most important disagreement relates to hypotheses of the origin and past migrations of the Eskimos.

Both Dr. Rink and Mr. Murdoch use an evolutionary framework to attempt to shed light on the origin of the Eskimos. According to Murdoch, Dr. Rink believes that by tracing the differences among the various Eskimo groups, a progressive series of these differences should betray the direction of migration. Dr. Rink believes that in many respects the technology or other cultural objects are not as developed in the west as in the east, and so the Eskimos must have originated in the west, probably in Alaska, and populated the region they have come to inhabit by moving eastward. Murdoch, however, disagrees, stating that the cultural materials do not reflect a general development from west to east, but that the most primitive materials can be found in the central area of the Eskimos? territory. Thus he believes that this central area was likely the region from which the Eskimos migrated.

Murdoch also includes a short discussion of Eskimo linguistics in which he states that the Eskimo language must be transcribed carefully and with the same phonetic symbols; he also attempts to correct what he believes are errors in that area of research. He states that this section of Dr. Rink?s book is the most valuable, but laments the fact that words lists which could be used for comparative studies are lacking for some regions.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
DAVID HASKELL University of Florida (John Moore)

Murdoch, John. On the Siberian Origin of Some Customs of the Western Eskimos. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol. 1: 325-336.

In this article, Murdoch seeks to explain the origin of certain customs prevalent in Eskimo culture. He begins by stating that the majority of their practices are similar, save constraints imposed by the environment, and uses this as evidence for communication between the east and west. However, Murdoch is quick to point out that contact with Europeans has altered their customs in various ways. Furthermore, the Western Eskimos have acquired peculiarities that do not exist among the Eastern Eskimos. Specifically referring to the use of tobacco and pipes, nets and bolas, the author attributes their use to Siberian influence, particularly the Chukches.

Tobacco is used regularly throughout the Arctic, but there is a discrepancy in the type of pipe that is used to smoke the tobacco. In areas where tobacco was introduced by the Europeans, their style of pipe is in use. They are manufactured from wood or clay and are distinguished by their large, deep bowls. However, the pipes in the west take on a curious form. The bowl is in the shape of a saucer, attached at a right angle to the stem and is present in two styles. In addition, the pipes are used in a peculiar manner by placing a wad of hair in the bottom of the bowl to assure no tobacco is pulled through into the mouth. Documented for the Eskimos of the northwest coast, according to the author, these practices were probably influences from Siberian neighbors. Further evidence comes from the area of linguistics, as the word for pipe is not from any known “stem word” in the Eskimo language.

Similar conditions have been cited for the acquisition of the net among Eskimo culture. The geographical distribution coincides with the use of the anomalous pipes. While evidence points to aboriginal origin for nets, Murdoch denies the validity of these assertions. He believes that Greenlandic Eskimos obtained nets from the Scandinavians, and once again, based on linguistic data, credits the Siberians for introducing them in the West.

Finally, Murdoch addresses the issue of the bird-bola. There is little evidence for the origin of this custom in terms of geographical distribution and liguistic data. However, according to Murdoch, the scanty information available suggests that the bola corresponds closely with the pipes and nets and probably shares their Siberian origin. While he can only speculate on this, the author is quite certain that the bird-bolas were unknown to the original Eskimos as none have been found in the East.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
MEGGAN BLESSING University of Florida (John Moore)

Murdoch, John. On The Siberian Origin Of Some Customs Of The Western Eskimos. American Anthropologist October, 1888 Vol. 1(14):325-336.

John Murdoch states that Eskimos are very diversified. He also states that though they are all the same people, their traits and customs differ greatly. He chooses to portray three customs of the Eskimos that he finds rather peculiar. The first custom he chooses to explore is tobacco use.

Many people believe that tobacco was introduced to the Americas from Europe during the period of colonization. If this is so, then how were the Eskimos using tobacco in all forms before it had a chance to migrate so far north? He describes the make and model of many pipes that the people used, and he describes the pipes with excellent specification. Murdoch suggests that the Eskimos traded goods regularly with Siberia, and many customs were adopted to and from either side, including the naming of certain items.

Another custom explored was the use of fishing nets. Murdoch states that the Eskimos did not use nets for fishing, but for gathering seals and small whales. Many people in Siberia and even Greenland were using nets at these same times. He mentions the naming technique, and how to determine if there were any correlations between the languages of these countries.

The naming of Murdoch?s final custom, catching fowl from mid-air, does not fit the criteria that it originated in another country. He feels that maybe this final custom explored was first conceived in the Americas, though this is not certain, it is just a possible hunch. The device for catching fowl is made of six balls and some string-like structure. The device is thrown into the air. The balls and string then wrap around the fowl?s wings making it impossible for the bird to fly. This in turn forces the bird to plummet to the ground and parish. This method of hunting was also found in parts of South America, so there is really no way to tell from where this custom or the name originated.

CLARITY RANKING: 2
KRISTA FAYRE INGRAM Bloomsburg University (Dr. Dauria)

Powell, J. W. Competition as a Factor in Human Evolution. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol. 1: 297-323.

Powell begins by addressing the fundamentals of biotic reproduction. His goal is to explore the doctrine of evolution and discuss the role natural selection plays in the progress of humankind. Unlike the animals, over-population does not factor into the scheme of human evolution. Therefore progress, in the human sense, is a result of cultural rather than biological factors. Furthermore, Powell believes that by applying the concept of natural selection to humans they are stripped of their superiority and reduced to the lower forms of creation. As a result, the essay is confined to what the author terms “high civilization.”

Man has taken nature into his own hands and manipulated it in such a way that this “human selection” has accounted for the survival of the species. There is a transfer of this struggle for existence from himself to his hands. By asserting his mental superiority, this cunning creature has assuaged the brutish forces of nature by developing art, institutions, linguistics and opinion. They have served as mediums for alleviating the ferocity of competition , rampant and savage in the animal world, but of a more gentle character in human society. This discussion of competition is rooted in Powell?s firm belief in the altruistic nature of human beings to secure happiness for the greater good.

As a man labors for his neighbor, he can seek to emulate him and secure progress, or he can antagonize his neighbor and ensure human retrogression. Competition through emulation involves the strife among humans for the excellence of society, whereas antagonistic competition is equated with the animals. Culture and appreciation of the arts separate natural man from civilized man. Furthermore, they serve as vehicles for organizing society, in turn reducing antagonistic competition.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
MEGGAN BLESSING University of Florida (John Moore)

Powell, Major J. W. COMPETITION AS A FACTOR IN HUMAN EVOLUTION. The American Anthropologist, 1888. Vol. 1, Issue 4, Pages 297-323.

The general issue of this article is the comparison of animal competition to human competition (or to be more specific, the lack there of). Mr. Powell’s basic argument is that every life form, plants included, fall into the theory of natural selection, that is the survival of the fittest. Those who are the strongest and most competent will live while the weak and less able will not survive. His reasoning for this competition amongst living things is basically the lack of resources compared to the number of living consumers. Powell goes on to explain that humans, not having to deal with such problems, do not compete amongst one another for existence, instead we help one another to better the entire population. As he states on page 304: “The law of evolution which is called ‘the survival of the fittest in the struggle for existence’ does not apply to mankind. Human progress is by other agencies and in obedience to other laws.” To support this theory, Powell gives the example of invention. He feels that the typical course of action in human life is not to strive to exist, but rather to make the duties and of our lives more convenient and practical. He applies the theory of “survival of the fittest” in human life to the tools we use, the most inconvenient and unpractical of our inventions “die” (become obsolete) while the ones which get the job done faster, and in a more comfortable way are kept and used. This is just one of the examples Powell gives to support his theory, others include man kind’s drive to improve communication, institutions, laws, and many others. In conclusion, Powell’s argument can be summarized in one sentence: “Animal evolution arises out of the struggle for existence; human evolution arises out of the endeavor to secure happiness: it is a conscious effort for improvement in condition.”

CLARITY: 4
CHRISTOPHER SPARKS San Diego Mesa College (Denise Couch)

Powell, J.W. Competition as a Factor in Human Evolution. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol. 1:297-323

Powell discusses biotic reproduction and studies evolution and how natural selection plays a part in man. He believes in the Survival of the fittest as far as the plants and animals but he does not believe it applies to mankind.

Man has separated himself from competition with plants and animals for existence. Human evolution is a result of the development of the arts, institution, linguistics and opinions. To this belief as a result to pure happiness there is not “natural selection” but “human selection”. Competition to equalize among humans in society is the antagonistic competition within animals. The difference between civilized men and natural men is the knowledge of culture and appreciation of art.

CLARITY: 4
BOBBIE SENK San Diego Mesa College (Denise Couch)

Powell, J. W. From Barbarism to Civilization. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol.1: 97-123.

Given the title, it is not surprising that this article is an exercise in tracing the stages of the evolution of civilization from savagery to barbarism to civilization. Each stage is described with regard to its characteristics in a range of institutions such as kinship, law, and language. The reconstruction of the development of civilization is heavily dependent upon European and Mediterranean history. Rather than harp on the obvious ethnocentric assumptions typical of such endeavors, which have rightly drawn criticism, I would like to point out other issues raised by the article.

Before proceeding with the main goal of the article, Powell devotes a few pages to correcting various errors and misconceptions of his day. The first belief, relevant to his view of stages of culture as aggregates of human activities, which Powell attacks is that culture frequently degrades, regresses, or falls to a lower level. This view was drawn from the observation that when civilized people come into contact with less civilized people, the latter commonly adopt customs or especially the language of the former, but in an imperfect form in relation to the original. Powell believes that rather than being evidence for the possibility of the regression of culture, this phenomenon should be viewed in terms of the total impact on both peoples. The civilized people have retained their civilized customs, while the less civilized customs of less civilized groups have been replaced by superior elements.

The second view Powell seeks to eliminate is one promulgated by civilized travelers who come in contact with less civilized peoples: that the languages of these peoples are “only jargons, and …not much better than brutish gruntings.” He views such statements as the opinions of ignorant observers who have formed them on the basis of far too limited interaction. He does, however, develop a system of judging the civilization of a language, stating that “improvement in language, by which the fewest words can be used for the greater expression, is accomplished through the development of the parts of speech and the integration of the sentence,” and that “the age of savagery is the age of sentence words; the age of barbarism the age of phrase words; the age of civilization the age of idea words.” I can not help but wonder if Powell does not follow his own advice all the way through, relying on accounts of languages which do not fully comprehend the languages.

In his conclusion, Powell states that his evolutionary theory is unlike others of his day by foregoing the biological analogy and slogan of survival of the fittest. Instead he believes he has “affirmed that old philosophy that human progress is by human endeavor.”

CLARITY RANKING: 5
DAVID HASKEL University of Florida (John Moore)

Powell, J. W. From Barbarism to Civilization. American Anthropologist April, 1888 Vol. 1 (2) 97-124.

In this article, J. W. Powell, who is the Director U.S. Bureau of Ethnology, illustrates the gradual transition of life from barbaric society to civilized nation. Powell discusses how society ascends ultimately to three separate levels: Savagery, Barbarism, and Civilization. Each stage demonstrates a profound change in the culture and practices of societies as they “progress”. Powell explains that savage or barbaric societies take particular aspects from advanced cultures and apply it to their own.

The first part of this article takes on the aspects of Savagery and its distinctions. Savagery is described as being a “state of perpetual warfare” where man lives and dies to kill. However, there do tend to be long periods of peace without violence. Also savages are described as having to use many words to project their thoughts and ideas. Savagery, he believed, follows kinship on the side of the mother and not the father. Also in this society marriage is more legal than it is religious which is opposite in advanced ones.

However it wasn?t until art was present that society was upgraded to Barbarism. Barbaric society was considered more destructive and comprised of a war-like people. Barbaric societies were also introduced to cultivation and the use of animals for domestic purposes. Art is portrayed through pottery and other “lesser forms”. Barbarians lived in small settlements that were very independent and were dependent on the tribal political organization. Kinship in Barbarism was organized through the father in a patriarchal structure. Barbarians begun to have divisions of rank as well as labor, which led to an unorganized society.

However, as Barbarism moves into Civilization, he explained that many different qualities are portrayed by the society. One quality is that war is more likely to be fought on a grander scale and on the basis of wealth; property is no longer held by the clan or patriarch, but by the individual. Marriage is considered to be more religious than legal. Language in a civilized nation is more concise and uses fewer words. The structural organization of Civilization is more uniform than Barbarism for these reasons.

This article describes the transition of society through three stages of human “cultural progression.” Today these ideas are considered ethnocentric. However, the information given is distributed at different points throughout the text so comprehension is fairly easy.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
TOM PEPE Bloomsburg University (Dr. Susan Dauria)

Proudfit, S.V. Notes on the Turtle-Back Celt. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol 1: 337-339.

The Bennings site is located along the Anacostia stream just east of the Capitol and was once a native camping-ground. In a description by Captain John Smith, the village, Nacotchtanke, was inhabited “with eighty able men.” Located in a pleasant valley, the soil has been cultivated for years and the locals are well aware of the Indian relics that can be found in and around the site. Apparently, they are inexhaustible despite the fact that the site has been frequented for quite some time. The artifacts range from the “rude ?turtle-back? of quartzite or argillite to the most delicately finished arrow-heads.”

Bennings however, is not the only site to produce such artifacts in the area. Analostan, located on the Virginia shore of the Potomac, has also produced “every form of stone implement common to Indian use or manufacture?in the same profusion as at Bennings.” These artifacts include axes, scrapers, drills and arrowheads. In addition, the Chain Bridge site is also heavily scattered with a variety of lithic tools. However, the Piney Branch site is the most interesting of those scattered in the area of the Potomac. Thousands of turtle-back celts can be found in the vicinity. Manufactured mainly from quartzite, the turtle-backs or paleoliths are basically unifacial cores. It appears that Piney Branch was an massive and prolific lithic workshop. Accordingly, Proudfit believes “this place is pre-eminently the home of the turtle-back.” He states that the celts found at Bennings are identical to the celts comprising the workshop and is curious to know why they were abandoned in the first place. Unfortunately, there is not enough information to warrant anything other than speculation.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
MEGGAN BLESSING University of Florida (John Moore)

Proudfit, S. V. Notes On The Turtle-Back Celt. American Anthropologist October, 1888 Vol. 1(15):337-340.

S. V. Proudfit chooses to discuss four different locations where these supposed “turtle-backs” have been found. Proudfit mentions the rude build of the “turtle-backs” though he never seems to actually mention what exactly they are. He describes the lay of the land (where these implements may be found) beautifully and lavishly.

During his study of the “turtle-backs”, he notes that they have no specific use, which he can find. The only thing that Proudfit knows about the “turtle-backs” is that there are a lot of them lying around. He notes them in all four places that he writes about, ranging them from very “primitive” to rather detailed. Some of them he says are so “primitive” that they may only be identified by a trained specialist. He feels that if one were to come across a “turtle-back”, since they are so primitive, one may believe that he or she has merely passed by a pebble. He rates these “turtle-backs” to the other implements lying around. He notes that all of the other objects have a known use or uses, and that they were in the same vicinity as these “rude” works.

Proudfit describes what the “turtle-backs” are made of, though he does not go into much detail. The only thing he mentions is that they are made of quartzite. He states that the arrowheads, axes, and knives are made out of extravagant jasper and chalcedony. He also gives way to the definition of “ironstone.” He seems to dislike this rock and does not see it as anything but that?a rock. He then again mentions that there seems to be no use for these pebble-like things lying around, and then he sites two irrelevant statements by two different men.

CLARITY RANKING: 2
KRISTA FAYRE INGRAM Bloomsburg University (Dr. Dauria)

Reynolds, Henry Lee. Algonkin Metal-Smiths. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol. 1: 341-352.

Concerning ancient metal working in the New World, there has been a series of debates as to the actual antiquity of this practice. M. Paul du Chatelier, in reference to the copper mines of the Great Lakes, attributes them “to an unknown people distinct from and superior to the historic Indian.” However, Dr. Charles T. Jackson believes them to be the works of natives currently interacting with the whites.

There are three lines of evidence for the antiquity of this practice. First, the excavated pits are filled with “the decayed accumulations of time;” secondly, ancient trees are found in association with this refuse; finally, there is no Indian tradition correlated with these finds. However, Reynolds does not find these arguments to be very convincing. Thus, it is likely that the Lake Superior mines were worked by the Algonkin Indians of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, who were connected with the early French pioneers.

All of the early accounts of the French refer to the use of copper among natives. While some of this copper can be attributed to foreign sources, particularly earlier voyages, the majority of the metal was aboriginal. It could be found in the form of drift copper, veins of the trap-rock of Lake Superior, and also in the Blue Ridge Mountains. “The American Indian, therefore, in those good days of pure aboriginal industry, was not the lazy, shiftless, and improvident being that the art of the European has made him.” For Reynolds, the most convincing line of evidence for the “later fabrication of our copper specimens” comes from the fact that many of them are found on the surface with little traces of decay. Some of these specimens have been shaped in imitation of French tools and weapons. Furthermore, these wares and weapons seem to be confined to the territory of French influence.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
MEGGAN BLESSING University of Florida (John Moore).

Reynolds, Henry. Algonkin Metal-Smiths. American Anthropologist October, 1888 Vol. I: 341-352.

Henry Reynolds? focus of this article is to give a historical account of evidence indicating the existence of copper mines mainly in the Southeast, Northeast and Central regions in the United States. The author presents plausible evidence that copper was of aboriginal origin. In the Lake Superior mines this is attributable to the Algonkin tribes during the fifteenth or sixteenth centuries. In the Blue Ridge Mountains region the Southern Indians were in possession of copper. The author cites three sources of aboriginal copper, drift copper, native copper found in the trap rock of Lake Superior, and the Blue Ridge Mountain areas. Reynolds cites the reference work, the Gentlemen of Elvas? account of DeSoto?s adventures, Rene Laudonaierre?s 1561 chronicle of the French colony in Florida, Thomas Hariot, and Ralph Lane. This article provides an in-depth look at the mountains of North Georgia, North Carolina, and Virginia in relation to the aboriginal activity in this region. Reynolds refers to his examination of copper specimens in Milwaukee and Wisconsin. Most interesting is his discussion about shaped native copper, as it appears to resemble tools, weapons, and spear-heads. This article is an extensive review of aboriginal copper in various regions in the United States. It is a credit to early anthropological data collection.

Clarity 4
ELIZABETH HAZZARD Bloomsburg University (Dr. Susan Dauria)

Seely, F. A. The Development of Time-Keeping in Greece and Rome. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol.1: 25-49.

This article by Mr. Seely of the U.S. Patent Office begins with the general hypothesis that time keeping systems can be viewed as a measure of cultural sophistication or civilization, noting that the modern nations of the world have schedules dependent on clocks accurate to the minute or even second, while at the opposite end of the spectrum the most savage peoples of the world have no way of reckoning periods of time shorter than a day marked by the passage of the sun in the sky.

Seely traces the earliest known use of the sundial back to Ancient Babylonia, from which the Greeks later adopted it, and states that at the time of its adoption Athens was beginning to emerge from a period of tyranny and frequent warfare. But the sundial was insufficient for the needs of the Athenians, as it could only be used to mark certain times of the day, and could only do this during the daytime and on sunny days. At this point Seely makes a distinction between a time-keeper and a time-check. The sundial is an example of the former, as it marks off successive time periods, but a time-check is used only for delimiting a specific, usually small, amount of time. For this purpose the Greeks used an instrument called a clepsydra, which measured time by the length of time for an amount of water in a container to pour out a small hole and into another container, raising the level of a float to certain points. This instruments was used in legal and governmental proceedings to limit the amount of time a particular person spoke.

At the beginning of the Roman republic, the use of the sundial was still somewhat crude, marking the time to eat or go to bed, or to “regulate the hours of business and pleasure.” In time the Romans combined the used of the sundial and the clepsydra, and delimited the day into periods they named horas which has been handed down to all the nations of Europe and beyond.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
DAVID HASKELL University of Florida (John Moore)

Seely, F. A. The Development of Time-Keeping in Greece and Rome. American Anthropologist January 1888 Vol. 1(1) 25-50

Mr. Seely takes a look at the basic form of counting time and its evolution: the clock. The earliest form of observing the passage of time was noting the rise and set of the sun. The author notes that with the rise of civilization the observation of hours of the day begin. The author states that this is a natural outcome because “civilized” people need to worry about so many things whereas “savages” only need to concern themselves with finding food.

As far as the author could find, there were three “primitive” instruments for time keeping: the sundial, the clepsydra (water clock), and the graduated candle. Seely focuses on the first two instruments because he felt that the graduated candle didn?t have enough of an impact on the world.

The sundial was first reported in Babylon as a novelty item. It measured increments of the day based on the length of the sun?s shadow on the dial. The next instrument, the clepsydra, was made to regulate shorter periods of time. Litigates and orators would use these to limit speech times. This originated in Malay as coconut shells (but for a completely different purpose) and went as far as North India and China where they became copper bowls. In it?s simplest form it was an earthenware vessel with a small hole in the bottom for the water to drip out. As the water level decreased, marks on the inside of the vessel represented the amount of time elapsed. Larger and more elaborate clepsydras were made, and eventually gear wheels and turning pointers were added.

The Romans used both the sundial and clepsydra for time management. The sundial was introduced in 262 B.C., and more than a century before Christian time the dial was improved to fit Roman latitude. Seely wrote that by adjusting the time piece to the latitude of the Earth they lived in time would be more accurate. The Romans also divided the day into four watches, which gave rise to the 3rd, 6th, and 9th hours. This originated for military purposes, and spread to all areas of life.

The modern clock was derived from the clepsydra. The systems went from a rack and pinion device to a grove-pulley to the clocks seen today.

CLARITY: 5
MELISSA WORMSER Bloomsburg University ( Dr. Dauria)

Thomas, Cyrus. Curious Customs and Strange Freaks of the Mound-Builders. American Anthropologist Vol. 1: 353-355.

This article is a descriptive account based on the explorations of the Bureau of Ethnology. Thomas begins by acknowledging the use of fire in association with the burial customs of the Mound-Builders. While this is common “among savage and semi-civilized people?some of the modes in which it was employed are so singular as to deserve special notice.”

There are several mounds in Ohio and West Virginia where the bodies were associated with hickory ashes and bark. A layer of bark was placed in the grave and then covered with a layer of ash one to two inches in thickness. The skeletons were then laid on this layer and covered with another layer of bark.

A mound in Tennessee possessed skeletons that had been placed in a squatting position, surrounded by a stone wall. This wall had been covered with a layer of charcoal and a cobble-stone, bee-hive shaped vault was constructed on top of it. Furthermore, another mound in Eastern Tennessee contained the remains of approximately one hundred individuals including all the age groups. One individual in particular was buried perpendicular to the other skeletons with the head facing down.

Especially interesting is a twenty-five foot mound in West Virginia with “one of the so-called ?clay altars??and a very singular burial which can be attributed only to a sudden freak.” There were two large skeletons in a sitting position, facing one another with their legs drawn up and their knees touching. Their arms were extended upward, as if to hold the mortar bowl that was placed in between their faces. The bowl had been burned and contained ashes of animal bones. In addition, another curious burial was found in a layer above the sitting skeletons. These bodies were lying on top of one another, the larger one on the bottom facing up and the smaller on top facing down. This same form of burial was found in North Carolina and both of them have been attributed to the Cherokees.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
MEGGAN BLESSING University of Florida (John Moore).

Thomas, Cyrus. Curious Customs and Strange Freaks of the Mound-Builders. American Anthropologist October, 1888 Vol. I: 353-355.

Cyrus Thomas highlights some of the explorations of the Bureau of Ethnology as they relate to the historical Mound-Builders in the United States. These explorations discovered various uses for fire in the burial ceremonies of clans and tribes throughout many states. Fire has historically played a part in the burial process according to the author, however there is little evidence of crematory customs among the Mound-Builders. Charcoal was used as a bedding of sorts, in Ohio, West Virginia, East Tennessee, and North Carolina. These burial mounds took varying shapes where as some were stone heaps while some resembled beehives.

According to Thomas, the Iowa and Northern Illinois sites demonstrated evidence of fierce heat, but none of the bodies or bones was decomposed by fire. Most notable was the peculiararities in the Northern Illinois site being the dislocation of the right arm and the placing of the arm beside the lower limbs of the remains, and in the Northeastern Missouri site with the right arm outstretched at right angles in a line of ashes. In a limited number of Northeastern Missouri sites the body lay horizontal with head on stone, then additional stones placed atop the head, thus crushing the skull. Skeletal positioning similarities were consistent in West Virginia and Ohio “clay altars”. These are attributed to sudden freaks in that singular burials exist with large skeletons slightly above in varying positions, again with evidence of fire that burned stone. The burial Mounds of North Carolina, East Tennessee, and Southern Ohio had notable differences of skeletons lying face to face atop one another, multiple adult face down and perpendicular positioning, and inter circular remains respectfully. In conclusion, this article was presented straight data with little analysis, conclusions or inferences.

Clarity Ranking 4
ELIZABETH HAZZARD Bloomsburg University (Dr. Susan Dauria)

Welling, James C. The Law of Malthus. American Anthropologist 1888 Vol.1:1-21.

Welling considers the role of Malthus?s law, relating population and food supply, as a factor which in the course of human history has had a hand in the rise of civilization, and will continue to play a positive role in human social evolution. He begins by dispelling the notion that Malthus?s work was a necessarily dreary prediction for the conditions of life at all times. Welling cites later publications of Malthus in which he admits that his mathematical comparison of the exponential growth of population compared to the linear growth of the food supply was merely an illustration, and that in the course of history there had in actuality been an oscillation between times of relative food surplus and periods of food shortage. Malthus?s law is also characterized as a reaction to the popular adage of his time that “Wherever Providence sends mouths He sends meat enough to feed them,” and that Malthus merely overemphasized his arguments to combat this popular notion.

The article then outlines how Malthus?s law has benefited mankind through the process of social evolution. His position is summed up well by the quote he offers as support: “an increase of population is an evil only where a nation lacks brains.” Essentially, the increase in population in a given region and the subsequent food shortage is seen as a stimulus for social change, or in Welling?s opinion, progress. It was population pressure which led to the development of pastoralism, then agriculture, up through the development of industrialized nations. Furthermore, it is his belief that the promise of Malthus?s law will benefit mankind for years to come, shaping and leading to the perfection of political, juridicial, and economic systems. This is because people in the modern nations of Europe do not go hungry due to a shortage in food, but rather “unproductive methods of food consumption and unscientific methods of food distribution.”

CLARITY RANKING: 4
DAVID HASKELL University of Florida (John Moore)

Welling, James C. The Law of Malthus. American Anthropologist January 1888 Vol. 1 (1) 1-25

In 1888, the discipline of American anthropology was far from being a concrete organization. The groundwork was present, but the mentality of scholars was much different than it is today.? In this article Dr. Welling of Columbia University takes the Law of Malthus and applies it to what was then modern day.

The Law of Malthus, in its simplest form, states that a “”population has a tendency to multiply itself beyond the conditions of subsistence.” Welling intertwines Malthus.” law with the evolution of civilization. He states that with the evolution of civilization, man has been able to better control the food supply for a growing population; this involves farming and the mass production of food for the community at large. In civilization, man can manipulate food sources, creating work and surplus, thus allowing population to continue its rise without chaos. On the other hand, with? ?savage” people, the societies runs wild, letting outside factors control their existence; completely opposite of the more “civilized” way of life. Welling gives the example of the “wild Indians of Mexico and Peru. He states that the population was” led to improve and extend their agriculture?[and there was] a considerable growth in the density of the population as compared with the lower status of savagery…” The meaning of which is that prosperity is a product of civilization.

It is clear that the anthropological viewpoint of the time was narrow and ethnocentric; the use of lower? and “savage” and ?red people” in reference to others not considered in mainstream civilization are clearly indicative of the mentality.

CLARITY: 4
MELISSA WORMSER Bloomsburg University (Dr. Dauria)