Human Organization 1972
Acheson, James M. Accounting Concepts and Economic Opportunities in a Tarascan Village: Emic and Etic Views. Human Organization Spring, 1972 Vol.31 (1): 83-91.
Being a successful businessman is an asset that is envied in Cuananjo, a Tarascan pueblo in Michoacan, Mexico. Cuananjo consists of approximately 2,700 Tarascan Indians that traditionally earn most of their living by subsistence agriculture, which is supplemented by other skilled tasks in the off-season. Many of the Tarascan Indians believe they can successfully identify opportunities by deriving their business possibilities from their native system of accounts or the inside view, known as “emic.” However, they do not take into consideration the possibilities which are available to them by taking into account the conceptual tools from formal economics or the view of the outside scientific observer, referred to as “etic.” Acheson feels that if the etic view was taken into account when choosing a business market, the Indians would better understand the real opportunities that are available to them, in comparison to their perceived opportunities.
For the purposes of Acheson’s research on the business success in Cuananjo, he only takes into account the behavior of men first entering new business and trying to rationalize their illogical business choices. To access the inability of these irrational men to succeed and to understand the business opportunities available, we must understand the basic accounting concepts used by the businessmen of Cuananjo. In Cuananjo, each prospective tycoon had approximately ten or eleven business choices.
An emic view of the natives measures profit in terms of “ganancia,” which is simply a measure of net cash income (gross sales minus short term cash expenses’ganancia). The problem here is that the natives do not include any costs in which cash was not paid out or any long term expenses such as taxes. As a result, success and opportunity for the emic view is solely based on the ganancias earned daily. Acheson evaluates the ganancia per day earned by each of the eleven business choices.
The etic view or the view of an economist focuses on the “net revenue” and the “returns to capital.” This calculation of net revenue gives a clearer picture of the real opportunity for income present in the field by taking into account all expenses, short-term and long-term, and includes the expense of replacing capital. Acheson analyzes the accounting concepts and indeed discovers a substantial difference between the perceived opportunities (emic) in comparison to the real opportunities (etic).
A native may enter into a business in which they view as emically good, but in reality is etically saturated. Acheson successfully demonstrated that there is a significant distinction shown by contrasting the emic and etic views of business accounting.
AMBER BUNDY North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller).
Ashcraft, Norman. Economic Opportunities and Patterns of Work: The Case of British Honduras. Human Organization Winter, 1972 Vol.31(4):425-433.
Through investigation of the economic history of Honduras, Ashcraft illustrates the impact that one aspect of a society, specifically economic relations, has on the community’s ability to adapt to its environment. He asserts that it is essential for a nation to have a balanced economy and infrastructure to survive financial upheavals. By delving into the history of the Honduran lumber trade, as well as the subsistence patterns of the colonial nation’s residents, he illustrates that the AYpatterns of workYare a direct result of opportunities selected not by the individual, but by institutions over which the individual has no control” (p. 426). His materialist approach is evident as the means of production and subsistence directly affect the existence of individuals within Honduran society.
To support his assertion, Ashcraft begins with the history of the Honduran mahogany trade. In the nineteenth century harvesting required constant work for eleven months of the year. The work was financially rewarding but left little time for farming. All timber was exported, bringing money but not products into the country. Even rations for the workers were generally imported, providing little market value for agricultural goods produced within Honduras’ borders. The timber workers, the majority of workers in the nation, were paid well and so spent little time on other activities, which in turn provided little time for infrastructure development. High wages and imported goods were beneficial to the residents until the bottom fell out of the international timber market in the 1930′s. From that time forward, the economy, and the lives of Honduran citizens, would never be the same.
Ashcraft concludes with an update of the state of Honduras society in 1972. As he foreshadows earlier in the article, the nation’s infrastructure is barely existent. Roads are little more than worn paths, the agricultural industry is undervalued, and unemployment is high. The only persons that benefit from crop production are the large estates, which employ many people, but at far lower wages than the timber industry ever paid. The citizens of Honduras suffer today because of the mistakes in planning made centuries before they were born.
CLARITY RANKING: 4
SARAH ROWLEY North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Cohen, Michael. An Empirical Foundation for an Explanation of Organizational Mobility. Human Organization Winter, 1972 Vol.31(3):291-302.
Through discussion of the flaws in a rationalist perspective, Cohen puts forward his own propositions for understanding organizational mobility based on empirical research. Although the rationalist school sparked renewed interest in the field, he asserts the research he details in the article is the correct explanation for individual mobility.
Cohen begins the article by presenting two rationalist theories of organizational mobility. The first, from Gordon Tullock, asserts that individuals are driven solely by self-interest in order to get ahead. The theory by Anthony Downs agrees that self-interest is a motivating factor in mobility, but adds that individuals may have other goals, including altruistic motives.
Next, Cohen critiques the theories from Tullock and Downs. He explains that both theories are riddled with flaws and incomplete explanations. First, the theories assume that an individual can choose to be mobile and that there are always positions available. Also, the theories do not compensate for factors outside the individual’s control, such as environmental factors. Lastly, the basic logic supporting Tullock’s theory is wrong in that it equates self-interested people with organizationally mobile people. Just because a person wants to get ahead does not mean they possess the ability to do so.
The rest of the article is given to Cohen’s reasons for valuing an empirical explanation of organizational mobility. He deems this is the foundation for an eventual theory that will replace the theories posited by the rationalists. He explains that the propositions he offers must “be empirically groundedYdescribe to the maximum the immediate situations which are relevant to achieving mobility and in which an individual finds himselfYand that they be easily operationalized” (p. 295). Cohen provides explanation for the eleven variables vital to his propositions including skill levels, interaction rates with others, and work group rank. He builds on the variables by detailing nineteen propositions for the basis of the future mobility theory. The remaining thirty propositions build upon the initial nineteen in a manner he calls “hypothetical syllogism” (p. 300). An example is proposition seven that asserts that the more skilled an individual is at his job, the higher the individuals rank within the work group. Proposition twenty-three claims that the more skilled the individual is, the better the relations within the work group.
CLARITY RANKING: 4
SARAH ROWLEY North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Counts, Dorothy E. The Kaliai and The Story: Development and Frustration In New Britain. Human Organization Winter, 1972 Vol.31(4): 373-383.
Counts addresses the unrelenting poverty of the Kaliai people who live in northwest New Britain. The Kaliai are a horticultural people who grow coconuts to produce copra, a coconut byproduct, which they have begun selling as a cash crop in the market since the colonization of their land. With the arrival of the British people and their way of government, the Kaliai have begun experiencing serious levels of poverty. In response to the lack of help from the government, some of the Kaliai have joined a cargo cult, which tells an inspirational story. The Story says that cargo, or valuable objects, will appear in plenty in New Britain after a snowfall. The government officials do not understand the behavior of the cargo cult followers and continuously make unsuccessful attempts to suppress the cargo movements.
The more serious problem that the article addresses is the lack of understanding and communication between the white government officials and the Kaliai. The Kaliai have become quite frustrated because they have seen the white people around them prospering while they continue to suffer. The Kaliai are also frustrated because they are rather isolated from the major markets in New Britain. The roads around their village are very poor or virtually nonexistent, which prevents the Kaliai from being able to sell their copra to major markets.
The Kaliai are not interested in plans that the British have devised to improve their lives. They do not want to participate in programs that they have not helped plan. This is one of the reasons that some of them have chosen to follow The Story. The Kaliai are often distrustful of the British because they think that the British initiate programs in order to exploit them. For example, a training school was set up for the Kaliai children, but the adult villagers felt that the school was only teaching skills necessary for the work of domestic servants and plantation workers. They refused to send their children there because of this.
Counts does not think that the position of the Kaliai will improve until the British stop trying to suppress the Kaliai who choose to follow The Story. The British also have to include the Kaliai when they try to formulate plans to improve their lives. The Kaliai will not take the white officials’ plans seriously unless they are allowed to have some input. The lack of understanding between the British and the Kaliai is a serious impediment in improving the standard of living of the indigenous people of New Britain.
CLARITY RATING: 4
JENNIFER ROSSI North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Dalton, George. Take Us by the Hand into Paradise, Human Resource Developmentwise. Human Organization Winter, 1972 Vol. 31(4):435-436.
The Undersecretary of the Agency for International Development’s primary focus is to provide emerging nations with key information in pursuit of economic, military and educational development and build a foundation for future progress. Among the Undersecretary’s goals is to assist underdeveloped allies to advance in their standard of living in the least amount of time. The article discusses a transcript of a meeting between the Undersecretary and the Society to Encourage Graceful Writing and Speech in America, and seeks to reveal the Undersecretary’s role in all aspects of human resource development.
The author begins by discussing the Undersecretary’s qualifications and reviewing his accomplishments in the areas of communication and public relations. The Undersecretary points out that simple wording can go a long way in marketing your needs to the potential workers by making their occupation sound more prestigious. Examples including substituting the term homemaker for housewife and woodworker for carpenter. Dalton uses these examples to underscore the point that communication is important in developing human resources.
CLARITY RANKING: 4
MATHEW R. JENNETTE North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Goering, M. John. Social Effects and Limitations of Development Planning: The Case of Indonesia and Singapore. Human Organization Winter, 1972 Vol. 31(4): 385-393
When author John M. Goering describes Indonesia as an “Alice-like race of running fast merely to avoid moving backward” (p. 386) and to Singapore as being “all dressed up and no where to go (p. 391), he refers to their contradictory developmental plans. In comparing and contrasting two different countries and looking at their developmental plans, the reader can see the strain that social effects and limitations have on these two countries as they strive to advance locally and globally.
Beginning with Indonesia, Goering demonstrates how that nation’s attempt to re-create and promote an agrarian economy (a plan known as the Five-Year Development) will cause several unconstructive effects and also make Indonesia even more dependent on the “United States, Japan, and other power houses” (p. 386). Indonesia feels that this plan would reverse the backwardness of their economy through renovating the agricultural division. However, Goering brings up several major frameworks that make this plan seem like a curse . Indonesia is already caught up in industrial development, it would be incredibly complicated for Indonesians to halt modernization and start over again. Also, the communications between the rural and urban locations are poor and a vast amount of money would have to be spent in order to fix these enormous problems. This choice is seen more as an operation “to maintain and conserve rather than reform and modernize” (p. 388).”
Singapore is noticeably different from Indonesia. Singapore, the “city-state with 86% of its population classified as urban” (p. 388), is more engulfed in industrial development. However, with this moneymaking and surface appearance of developmental greatness, “nationalism becomes a technique for the manipulation of the labor force for the purpose of reaching the goals stated in development planning programs” (p. 389). Goering clearly highlights in his writing the downfall of unions, the thrust of vocational schools on the young, and the undermining control the government officials have on banning counter-cultural lifestyles. On the outside Singapore may look good, however, this is correlated with limitations that are too serious and too impeding on the lifestyle of its people.
Goering points out what great difficulty it is for dependent countries to push through with developmental plans and that “alternatives to present plans for industrial or agricultural development in Singapore and Indonesia can only be achieved at considerable costs to existing power groupsYdevelopment through economic dependency leads, however, to perpetual instability “(p. 392). Instability is clearly predicted for Indonesia and Singapore based upon their developmental plans.
CLARITY RANKING: 4
REBECCA GUILD North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Gonzalez, Nancie. The Sociology of a Dam. Human Organization Winter, 1972 Vol. 35(4):353-360.
Gonzalez argues that even though an anthropologist in the field often adopts the value position of the people studied, it is necessary to remain objective when interpreting the significance of events involving multiple groups and layers of society. The focus of her article is the social impact of a proposed hydroelectric dam being built in Los Ranchos de Tavera, an area in the northwest of the Dominican Republic.
The dam (Presa de Tavera) project was supported by all the people of the country. Citizens from all parts of society, the peasant farmers, the poor in the cities, the rich landowners and industrialists felt that the dam had to be built for everyone’s benefit. As Gonzalez began to learn more about the project she discovered areas of disagreement, however. Most importantly, it appeared that the dam would not benefit the small landowners through new irrigation systems as was commonly believed. After providing the reader with some history of the recent politics and economics of the region, Gonzalez examines the relationship between the existing irrigation infrastructure, which is in a state of serious disrepair, and politically powerful people, many of whom are also large landowners. Those same individuals who currently use most of the irrigation canals, and avoid paying water taxes which would provide the revenue to fix the systems, are the primary beneficiaries of the project. The revenue from the sale of electricity, a commodity not often used by the small farmer, will pay for the canal maintenance. Gonzalez points out that “although 60,000 acres will be irrigated [by the dam project], in fact these are the same 60,000 acres already under irrigation in the area” (p. 357).
The driving force behind the peasant farmers’ support for the project is the dream that it will make their lands overwhelmingly productive, an idea that is “consciously promoted by the government” (p. 357). Gonzalez uses the dam as an example from her own experience to demonstrate a methodological technique. She closes the article with a note on her methodology: “had I examined the situation only from the point of view of the peasant, I would have missed the real significance of the Presa de Tavera as a social phenomenon. And had I missed that, I might have missed a great deal more of the significant elements of this complex nation and its role in the larger world society” (p. 359).”
CLARITY RANKING: 4
ERMANNO IANNETTI North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Fabrega, Horacio Jr. & Manning, Peter. Health Maintenance Among Peruvian Peasants. Human Organization 1972 Vol.31 (3): 243-255.
Fabrega and Manning conduct a study of the health maintenance system in Huarocondo, Peru, a rural community on a plateau. Through an extensive analysis of the types of herbs that Peruvians use and the ways in which they use them, Fabrega seeks to understand the motivations and organizational behavior behind the Peruvian health maintenance system. The peasants are closely identified with their land and therefore believe that the solutions to their physical ailments come from the earth in the form of herbs. From a symbolic interactionism approach, Fabrega first looks at the social aspects of Peruvian herb use. Fabrega then interviews forty informants on the specific uses of herbs. Based on the information they give him he constructs many charts and graphs displaying his results. The charts show the correlation between herbs and the consensus of the informants on how well the herb works to cure or prevent a specific ailment. Fabrega found that the use of a herb depends upon whether the person is trying to cure an ailment or seeking to avoid one.
Fabrega learned that the motivation for this Peruvian health maintenance system is that the Peruvians have a desire for a well functioning painless body and they believe health maintenance through herb use is how to achieve their desire. Fabrega found that there are three instances in which herbs are used for therapeutic uses. The first is to relieve a specific ailment such as a headache. The second is to alleviate symptoms associated with an illness. The third instance in which herbs are used is to relieve a general state of the body that may not actually cause symptoms or pain, such as being in a bad mood. The other way in which herbs are used is in a preventative manner. Herbal tonics and alcohol are thought to maintain the body in a good state and are taken regularly throughout the day. Overall Fabrega does a good job of relating his findings. He is sometimes very technical. The charts and graphs he makes are complicated at first, but they become easier to understand after rereading the article.
CLARITY RANKING: 3
BRANDON ZEI North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Foner, Nancy. Competition, Conflict, and Education in Rural Jamaica. Human Organization Winter, 1972 Vol.31(4):395-402.
Foner examines how changes in formal education have affected a rural village in Jamaica. The Jamaican government worked to implement programs to increase educational opportunities for the lower social classes. Prior to these reforms, secondary school was something that only elites had the opportunity to attend, therefore, leaving little room for social advancement or movement between classes.
Jamaicans recognize education as the key to bettering one’s social position since occupation is the main determinant of one’s social rank. Foner divides occupations into five categories: wage laborers, small independent farmers, big farmers and entrepreneurs, white collar workers, and large estate owners. She explains that age is also a factor in determining social rank. Five groups of “age-rank” are discussed: children under nine, children in upper levels of primary school, young people who have finished school but have not entered a domestic union, those with domestic responsibilities and young children, and older people.
There is often disagreement over a person’s claim of superiority and their actual status. Those most likely to argue are those with similar social status or kin. Foner points out that educational success is often a source of dispute. Since most adults in the village are too old to take advantage of the opportunities to go to secondary school and better their social position, villagers gain prestige based on the accomplishments of their children. Disputes may break out if one villager’s child is doing well academically and he makes claims to social superiority. Foner stresses that arguments only erupt between those of equal social status; claims of superiority would not be contested if a villager was older or of a higher-ranking occupation. She thinks that these arguments allow villagers to express their frustration with their social status. Disputing amongst themselves avoids major divisions on a national level or open confrontation against established authorities.
Given the increase in the number of individuals attending secondary school, Foner predicts that it will become more difficult to find jobs. Secondary schooling will not automatically result in a better occupation since there will be an overpopulation of secondary school graduates. However, even though secondary education won’t guarantee an individual a better occupation, it will still increase his chances of enhancing his social position. Therefore, attending school will remain extremely important to Jamaicans, even if the likelihood of finding a well-paying occupation decreases over time. In conclusion, Foner calls for more research on the impacts of educational changes on local communities.
CLARITY RANKING: 4
ERICA WIELAND North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Pierce, Robert C., M. Margaret Clark, and Christie W. Kiefer. A “Bootstrap” Scaling Technique. Human Organization Winter, 1972 Vol.31(4): 403-410.
In social science research, creating methods for quantifying previously unmeasured social phenomena are sometimes necessary. Pierce, Clark and Kiefer offer a solution to this problem by detailing a technique they developed to quantify the acculturation of Japanese and Mexican immigrants to American culture. They argue that their method, the “bootstrap” scaling technique, can also be applied to other areas of research for which there are no established methods for quantification.
To analyze the acculturation of Mexican Americans and Japanese Americans, the authors developed a picture-identification test designed to discover what the participants know about American popular culture compared to what they know about their own. Three sets of pictures representing common cultural characteristics were compiled for use in this testing procedure; one set each for American, Mexican and Japanese cultures. The researchers showed these pictures to participants representing three generations of Mexican Americans and Japanese Americans and scored the participants’ ability to correctly identify the pictures. Using this score as an indication of the participants’ knowledge of the cultures represented, they were able to compare the participants’ familiarity with their own cultures compared to American culture. They then compared these results within and between the three generations to construct an Acculturative Balance Scale (ABS). The ABS was developed to provide a single score which would “reflect the relative balance between the traditional culture and the adopted culture” (p. 409).
The authors conclude that their new method should be evaluated by other researchers as a useful method for the measurement of acculturation among other groups. They also argue that after being proven effective in the area of acculturation, their method could also be used as a general method for the “initial scaling in areas where measurement has not previously been attempted” (p. 410).
CLARITY RANKING: 3
JESSICA WILKERSON North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Goodman, Paul S. and Moore, Brian E. Critical Issues of Cross-Cultural Management Research. Human Organization 1972 Vol.31(1):39-45.
The purpose of this paper is to reevaluate techniques that have been used to perform cross-cultural management research. By reviewing research conducted during the 1960′s and 1970′s, Paul S. Goodman and Brian E. Moore attempt to identify techniques that have proven to be efficient methods, and to discover where common weakness lie. They find three fundamental errors that commonly occur during the process of conducting cross-cultural management research. First, a researcher refuses to portray culture as a moderator. Goodman and Moore state that it is imperative that research represent culture as Aex ante” rather than “ex post facto” (p. 40). They refer to study performed by Zurcher et al. (1965) concerning the effects of culture on an individual. Pertaining to particularism versus universalism, the study also incorporated a consideration of alienation in the workplace (p. 40). Goodman and Moore decide to employ Zurcher’s conceptualization of culture and how culture as a moderator can be operationalized. Furthermore, the Zurcher study is credited with “(selecting) a particular dimension of culture” and “(the) explanation and prediction is enhanced because the effect of culture is specified for measurement” (p. 41).
The second error that Goodman and Moore found in cross-cultural management research was the researcher’s neglect in identifying the operational specifications that may slant the result. The tendency for researchers to neglect sub-cultural variations and to generalize important aspects of these differences can have a negative effect on the efficiency and legitimacy of the conducted study. In order to avoid an error in the data collection and process, they propose a comparative assessment of all data to be analyzed and verified for (p. 41).
Finally, Goodman and Moore emphasize the importance of the correct analysis of data recorded. Goodman and Moore state that due to the abundant complexities of societies, it is important to separate dimensional effects, assess culture in regard to other social variables, and the data analysis must be complex enough so that any “selection bias” can be dealt with (p. 42). This study was based on the relationship between “supervisory styles” and “general satisfaction” of workers in both Peru and the United States (p. 42). According to Goodman and Moore, the Williams’ study “represents an appropriate model for data analysis strategy” (p. 42). The Williams et al. (1966) study provided an exceptional method of conducting analysis.
Goodman and Moore conclude that ineffectual delineation, failure to characterize culture as a moderator, and inadequate methods of processing analyzed data contribute to inadequate conclusions. Goodman and Moore assert that these three factors must be considered to produce an effective and valid conclusion from a cross-cultural management research study.
CLARITY RANKING: 4
TERRA STOCKWELL North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Graves, Theodore C. and Charles A. Lave. Determinants of Urban Migrant Indian Wages. Human Organization Spring 1972 Vol. 31(1): 47-61.
Often anthropologists are taught the mathematical principles of statistical procedures without learning about their substantive applications. Graves and Lave attempt to demonstrate the useful application of multiple regression, using as their research problem the factors affecting the wages of migrant Navajo Indians in Denver, Colorado.
The population of migrant Navajo Indians studied were participants in a “relocation program” sponsored by the Bureau of Indian Affairs. The program was designed to solve the problems of growing Indian populations and discontent in the reservations. Indian men were given inducements to relocate to an urban center to find employment. Graves had been studying this population for eight years and found that half of these migrants left within six months and half were arrested at least once while they were in Denver, usually for drinking related problems. The migrant’s economic situation seemed to be the factor that most affected the Indians’ adaptation process. Men who were successful and pleased with their jobs stayed longer and had lower rates of drunkenness and arrest. This pattern led to the choice of economic achievement measured by wages as the focus of the study.
The authors outline their statistical model; a multiple regression with the migrant’s starting wage as the dependent variable. Independent variables included parental role models, education, pre-migration experiences, social and personality attributes, and general economic conditions. Ultimately, the equation which provided the most accurate model included the variables of starting wage, years of education beyond 10, vocational training level, highest pre-migration wage, marital status, and father’s occupation. After a description of the steps required for implementing the model equation, limitations are discussed such as the exclusion of indirect and artifactual effects. The results indicated that between two sets of migrant workers: those entering semiskilled and skilled jobs and those entering manual labor occupations, the group most accurately described by the model are the skilled/semiskilled laborers.
The authors conclude that for this group of workers, their model can explain 40% of the variance in their starting wages, with training and educations levels acting as the most significant variables. They discuss areas which could be explored or improved upon by further research including; migrant’s physical characteristics, characteristics of the BIA mediator officers, and characteristics of migrants’ employers. The article ends with a discussion of the effectiveness of the BIA relocation program. The authors insist that this was not one of the purposes of their study, however, so their multiple regression model is not capable of handling this evaluation.
JESSICA WILKERSON North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Hackenberg, Robert A. Restricted Interdependence: The Adaptive Pattern of Papago Indian Society. American Anthropologist Summer, 1972 Vol.31(2): 111-125.
Hackenberg’s study analyzes the Papago Indians’ adaptive patterns within a social, economic, and political context. The Papago’s, who live in the harsh Sonoran Desert of southern Arizona, traditionally utilize a centrifugal relationship with other communities around them in order to obtain some resources. This centrifugal strategy is comprised of “dispersed authorities (who) guide limited numbers of participants with diverse loyalties.” (p. 115) This strategy helps to maintain amenable relationships with other communities in order to access resources and unite for defense and celebrations. Without this centrifugal strategy, the mostly migratory Papago would have trouble surviving in their traditional society.
As contact with non-Indian population was made, modernization pushed into the communities. Particularly in the 1930′s, the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) attempted to encourage Papago development by creating a bureaucracy around the Indians that utilized a centripetal strategy. This strategy was meant to allow the Indians to compete in a modern society. The centripetal strategy is “a hierarchy of decision makers [who] attempt to secure the total allegiance of all participants to the development.” (p. 115) The BIA hoped this would help the Papago’s develop modern agriculture, trade, health, and education systems that could positively effect Indian living standards.
Hackenberg divided the tribes into three basic categories. High villages were considered the most modern. Low villages were categorized as the least modern. Those villages in-between were considered transitional and were called medium villages. Respectively, high villages were predicted to adapt a centripetal strategy while low villages would continue to use a centrifugal strategy. In his hypothesis, Hackenberg infers that high and low groups will use centripetal and centrifugal strategies respectively because of the perceived modern benefits to the village.
Hackenberg focuses on the “residential mobility and subsistence activities of the tribesmen” (p. 119) in order to draw conclusions on village’s strategy. Agriculture, domestic service, trade, business, and clerical (p. 122) are the main categories of employment for the Papago. The study of immigration and emigration show that high villages, like low villages, are not sedentary. Many individuals leave their villages to search for outside resources. High villages tend to have a larger population that stays at home due to the availability of domestic jobs. However, migratory Indians from all villages are almost equally proportional to the population of each village.
Hackenberg finds no evidence for the centripetal strategy of adaptation in the high villages. Instead, Hackenberg notes that the three types of villages employ the centrifugal strategy, but show urban and rural variation on the centrifugal strategy (p. 123). While the government attempted to help buffer against encroachment, modernization continued to occur. None the less, for any community to survive, it must “retain a certain degree of adaptive flexibility” (p. 123). In this case, the Papago have tailored their centrifugal strategy of adaptation in a way that will preserve their lifestyle but also give them reasonable access to resources that modernization provides.
MIKE FINEWOOD North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Hackenberg, Robert A. and C. Roderick Wilson. Reluctant Emigrants: The Role of Migration in Papago Indian Adaptation. Human Organization Summer, 1972 Vol. 31(2):171-186.
Utilizing various statistics, Hackenberg and Wilson evaluate the patterns of migration among the Papago Indians of southern Arizona. They seek to discover whether migration is occurring in a temporary and circular manner or a permanent and linear one. In essence, they seek to determine whether migration serves to conserve the reservation population or if migration will eventually lead to the demise of reservation life.
Comparing reservation districts using available data on the place of residence and origin, Hackenberg and Wilson chose three districts. Their decision was based upon the degree of “homogeneity” and replacement, number of residents who originated in the district and the number who arrived as a result of immigration respectively. Then statistics were collected regarding the number of migrants by age and sex , the type of migration, probability of a migrant’s return to their place of origin, the age at which migration occurs, the destination of migration, whether there was an intermediate destination, and, if so, what type of destination it was. Types of destination and age groups were clearly defined. In addition, motives for migration were investigated. As each group of statistics is presented, an explanation of their significance is given. Based upon the extensive data collected Hackenberg and Wilson argue that the migration is permanent and linear and that the primary motive for migration was employment.
An immense amount of data, primarily in the form of tables of statistics, are presented, and the authors faithfully note their significance. They sought the precision in their data collection that would enable them to draw relevant conclusions. While the specificity of the information that they collected adds credibility to the conclusions presented, it can overwhelm the reader.
CLARITY RANKING: 5
GRETCHEN GUYER North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Heckenburg, Beverly Heckart. Social Mobility in a Tribal Society: The Case of Papago Indian Veterans. Human Organization Summer, 1972 Vol.31(2):201-208.
The study investigates and attempts to explain patterns of upward social mobility among Papago Indian veterans. A hypothesis which correlates military experience with social mobility in a postwar environment is tested. Social mobility refers to one’s ability to move through society (socially and economically) to obtain a new or desired status within that society.
The fundamental involvement within social mobility begins with psychological mobility: the desire for a higher social status and/or an improved standard of living. Psychological mobility tends to separate individuals from one another within a group, which leads to differentiation among peers. Separation among the Indian tribes of the American Southwest such as the Papago has never been widespread, as it would conflict with life styles, and cultural norms. Traditional Papago Indian society has never encouraged social mobility, whereas in American society social mobility is viewed as a lifetime objective.
Data collected from the Papago population registry indicated that armed forces veterans have been more successful in terms of their social mobility than other Papago. Hackenburg suggests that through a process of acceptance into new peer groups within the military service, the average Papago soldier became acculturated to a non-Indian set of values and norms. The anthropologist then tested the idea by comparing the social and economic success of Papago veterans to a non-veteran group of Papago males who were similar in other respects. By using the dependant variables of education, residence, and occupation, Hackenburg was effectively able to identify socioeconomic status within both groups, and predicted a positive correlation between military service, higher education, and off reservation employment. Hackenburg concludes that Papago veterans engaged in upward social mobility within the tribe by assuming leadership positions without experiencing hostility or isolation from traditional members of their culture continued to retain their social identity within the group.
THOMAS H. LACOMBE North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Hackenberg, Robert and Mary Gallagher. The Costs of Cultural Change: Accidental Injury and Modernization among the Papago Indians. Human Organization 1972 Vol. 31(2):211-226.
Hackenberg and Gallagher examine accidental injury rates among Papago Indians. They begin with a discussion of how the modernization process has affected all death rates associated with modernization (e.g. infant mortality, maternal mortality) except accidental injury and death. The authors argue that modernization levels represent cultural change and that this change can be stressful, leading to elevated accident rates. They use the accident case rate as an index of stresses associated with the modernization process. Specifically, they set out to test the disability and incompatibility hypotheses. These two hypotheses predict how accidental injury rates are affected in urban and rural areas because of modernization or lack of modernization. The disability hypothesis predicts that rural communities are not helped by modernization because of emigration, depleted resources and isolation, leading to higher rates of accidental injury. On the other hand, the incompatibility hypothesis predicts that urban areas create much stress for Indians in the demands and expectations placed on them due to cultural change, which lead to higher rates of accidental injury.
The Papago Indians, located in southern Arizona, are appropriate research subjects because they occupy both rural and urban communities. The authors use a modernization scale to place the Papago villages along a rural to urban continuum. They utilize injury data from the Papago population register collected from fieldwork done from 1958-1960 and systematically updated with vital registration data and a 1968 field survey.
Great significance is not placed on the results of this study by Hackenberg and Gallagher because they state that their analysis is preliminary and much more research is needed. They do claim that their results do not support the disability hypothesis, however, and indicate that Papagos are attempting to escape from traditionalism. Thus, a general conclusion is that higher rates of accidental injury are found in more urban areas. On a final note, with regard to critics who claim that alcohol is to blame for the higher accidental injury rate, they argue that drinking behavior among the Papago Indians does not explain the accident case rate.
CLARITY RANKING: 4
RACHEL HAGEWEN North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Hicks, Frederic. Making a Living during the Dead Season in Sugar-Producing Regions of the Caribbean. Human Organization Spring, 1972 Vol.31(1):73-81
Hicks identifies how the dead season became a problem for workers in the Caribbean. He lists and describes the three main methods of subsistence that sugarcane workers adopt during this season. He relies mainly on details gathered from published sources and reinforces them with information from other anthropologists’ studies.
Sugarcane is a major crop in the Caribbean, and harvesting it used to be a labor-intensive process. As time progressed, however, new technology emerged. Machines such as the steam-powered grinding mill worked 100 times faster thanhand-grinding, and motorized vehicles eliminated the need for the sugarcane to be hand-carried. The only task that still relies on manual labor is cutting the sugarcane. The speed with which the machines complete the other jobs allows the sugarcane to be harvested at peak condition-when its sugar content is highest- all in one harvest season. Since the machines eliminated the year-round jobs, workers have to find a way to support themselves during the lull.
The first method of subsistence is called the “minifundia pattern.” Minifundia are the small pieces of land associated with the plantations. Companies rent these lands to workers so their labor force will remain during the dead season. On these plots, a worker is allowed to plant sugarcane for personal use or sale. Typically, this sugarcane is sold back to the plantation that owned the land initially. This pattern emerges in densely populated regions such as the Lesser Antilles islands, Jamaica, Barbados. This necessity for a dense population is because sugar companies do not want an individual to obtain enough land to be self-sufficient and to abandon the plantation come harvest.
The main characteristic of the “landless proletariat pattern” is that the supplemental are nonagricultural, including fishing, carpentry, cooking, or peddling. These jobs are as important as sugarcane work. This second pattern establishes itself in more sparsely populated regions like Puerto Rico and Cuba. Since the amount of labor is less, the goal from a sugar company’s viewpoint is to create a workforce by acquiring enough land to keep farmers from being self-sufficient.
The final pattern is labeled “Cuban Socialist pattern,” which emerges in post-Revolution Cuba. In this pattern, there are “state farms” and private farms, but the national plan predetermines all crops that are planted. Cuba had a large decrease in available labor for sugarcane harvesting because workers obtained jobs that were left empty after others left during the Revolution. Cuba’s entire economy adjusts for this loss by pulling workers from other economic areas when harvesting begins. The workers usually get paid as if they were at their other job, yet they are Avolunteering” their services. Unlike the first two methods, population density is not an influential factor for this pattern.
Hicks’ acknowledges that sugarcane is not the only economically important crop, and that the labor needed for other crops can vary just as much. Hicks argues that the necessities of growing sugarcane are important because they are responsible for creating certain cultural aspects in these regions. Hicks also recognizes that the three subsistence patterns seem to work. He does not feel that these methods will endure in the future, however. The technology to mechanize the cutting process exists, and it’s only a matter of time before it reaches the Caribbean. When this technology arrives, the harvesters will lose their economic keystone, regions will become overpopulated, unemployment will increase, and cultures will change.
MARTHA JOLLY North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Huth, Mary Jo. The Relevance of Europe’s New Towns for United States Urban Policy. Human Organization Spring, 1972 Vol. 31 (1): 31-38.
As the United States population grows and cities expand, there is an ever-increasing need to organize and manage all types of cities and towns better. Cities and towns must be organized so that the inhabitants’ basic needs of home, work, and happiness are met. Europe uses three urban expansion methods: “increasing the density of existing urban areas; establishing urban extensions; and creating new towns” (p. 33). Huth sets out to show how better organization can be achieved in the United States by examining how new European towns are organized and managed. Her justification for using European towns as models is that they “share many cultural and political traditions and are in roughly comparable stage(s) of urbanization.” (p. 36) Huth examined five new towns during the summer of 1970: Bijlmermeer, Holland; Farsta, Sweden; Cumbernauld, Scotland; Crawley, England; and Tapiola, Finland.
City planning, landscape design, and employment are among the major aspects studied. The use of a town center in planning is very successful. The town center is generally a shopping mall with lots of seating areas, gardens, and other aesthetically pleasing features. Pedestrians in the town centers also have safe sidewalks to get to and from the mall to their cars or homes. Some towns construct sidewalks above the roads, or the area around the center is made completely pedestrian. The appearance of the towns is also important. Many towns have parks, fountains, and community activity centers (skating rinks, movie theaters, athletic fields, etc.). Towns where land use must be efficient are incorporate ornamental lakes and greenery. Another important aspect of town planning is employment. To provide employment opportunities for local people, the town government permits businesses to move into the town or provides municipal transit systems to other cities.
Huth argues that studying new European towns is important for comparative purposes. The United States has experienced rapid population growth. Additionally, American cities have been affected by technological pressures, ethnic and racial tensions, increased traffic congestion, and high property prices. Two principles have come from the planning experience in Europe that could aid American core cites. First, “satisfactory level(s) of social interaction within a community requires a greater mix of land uses than traditionally has been considered desirable.” Second, “… multiplicity of jurisdictions within one urban area thwarts efforts to cope effectively with urban land use problems.” (p. 32) Governments have decreased the amount of public work construction within towns. Town governments also limit locations of commercial and private establishments by giving grants, withholding monetary incentives, and controlling the permits distribution. Huth concludes that to improve organization of new and old cities there must be cooperation and mutual assistance between the government and private sectors. Better organization and resource management can be accomplished in a financially sound way.
IZABEL SZARY North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Leighton, Alexander H., and Edward A. Mason, Joseph C. Kern, Frederick A. Leighton, Moving Pictures as an Aid in Community Development. Human Organization 1972 Vol. 31(1):11-21.
Inspired by previous community development research projects including the Stirling County Study and B.F. Skinner’s idea of “positive reinforcement”, the authors experimented with using film as a stimulus for change and community development in a rural area of the Canadian Maritimes. The “movie mirror” community development technique was designed to highlight the finer qualities of the people in the region, in order to curtail issues regarding isolation, self and community disparagement, powerlessness, and short-term motivation. The article is divided into three sections. The first section describes four problematic areas to be changed The second section examines how film has been incorporated into other studies for similar purposes. The third section discusses two specific “movie mirror” projects, “the library float” and “weir fishing”, in order to show how the “movie mirror” technique has engendered a greater sense of community, pride, power, and motivation.
The “library float” project was suggested by the local Library Board based on another community development project conducted in the summer of 1967. The authors decided to film the sequence of events from the initial discussion that led to the decision by local community members to enter a float in a local parade through the day of the parade. The authors wanted to show how the “movie mirror” technique can be used to bring people out of isolation through public viewing of the movie, and how the contribution of the children (who designed the float), their parents (who made their costumes), the carpenter (who built the float), and others led to the successful creation of an “honorable mention” parade float. They argued that the screening of the film led to a positive change in attitude for the community based on demands for additional screenings, clapping at every showing, and comments like, “it shows what can be done when people work together” (p. 18).
The second film on “weir fishing” followed the work performed by the community’s weir fishermen to familiarize people with the occupation and reduce the sense of isolation. Using the “movie mirror” technique the film emphasized the beauty of the environment and importance of the job to increase appreciation for the workers and counteract disparagement within the self and in the community. This film, like the “library float” project, was also well-received, and resulted in multiple public screenings and observable changes in attitude by members of the community.
The portrayal of the informants in a positive light proved crucial to the success of the project. The authors conclude that the “movie mirror” technique using film is a relatively inexpensive and useful tool and is superior to video because of its ease in editing and high quality resolution. “Movie mirrors” were found to reduce self- and community-disparagement and are recommended for future use programs designed to involve and inspire the community.
CAROL NHAN North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Magnarella, Paul J. Aspects of Kinship Change in a Modernizing Turkish Town. Human Organization Winter, 1972 Vol. 31(4): 361-371.
Paul Magnarella’s article examines certain aspects of kinship change in a modernizing community in Turkey. He conducted his research in Susurluk, which is located in the northwestern corner of Asia Minor and traditionally was a small agrarian community. More recently, however, the town has undergone dramatic changes toward modernization. One such change was the establishment of a modern sugar refinery in 1955. Magnarella notes the inadequacies of the existing approaches to kinship study and proposes a more dynamic method. The argument proposed deals with people’s goals, the ways they change through time, and the ways interactions help individuals attain these goals. He looks at this approach by using two specific goals of kinship: (1) household formation and spouse selection, and (2) internal relations with emphasis on decision making (p. 362).
Household formation is the first example to which Magnarella’s approach is applied. The goal of this household formation is an agnatically extended and patriarchal household. This ideal would include: a patriarch, his wife, and their children along with any married sons and their families. When the parents die, the married sons and families establish their own households. In order to examine how attitudes have changed with time, Magnarella looks at attitudes toward post marital residence. His findings state that “a large number of townsmen explained that newlyweds should live alone if finances permit, since, in part, patrilocal residence existed for economic reasons” (p. 365). It is interesting to note that an agrarian community seems economically to favor larger households, while increased job opportunity appears to favor the opposite. As a result, families who reside in neolocal homes are less influenced by elderly kin than families who traditionally dwelled in extended households. Through this examination one can see how the goal (an ideal extended patriarchal household) has changed through modernization to favor a more neolocal household, and how this change has affected the relationship of the younger generation to the elderly kin.
These stages can also be applied to spouse selection. In a patriarchal and extended household, the acquisition of a spouse is the concern of the entire family. For example, a daughter in law and her family are evaluated in terms of whether or not her family would bring honor or shame to the son’s family, and vice versa. This original goal of familial choice has changed with the coming of coeducational schools and the availability of education to both sexes. Increased job opportunity has also helped to create different criteria in the choice of a spouse. Academic standing for both men and women is now of significant importance. In addition, the westernization of the legal sphere has affected familial control over spouse selection. The new Turkish civil code states that people may marry without parental consent at the age of eighteen. Also, no marriage can occur without the expressed consent of both parties. These changes have served to bring greater opportunity for individual choice in relationships. Interestingly, Magnarella found that many modern parents express a desire for their child to marry someone they love, which shows the dramatic change in the internal relationships of kinship.
A very clear expression of internal relationships with respect to decision making arises in husband/wife interactions. Traditionally, patriarchal authority dominated, and women were intended to be obedient, subservient, and secluded: One local man told Magnarella that in the Quran Allah has said, >If you do not worship me, worship your husband (p. 366). Consequently, women had no say in the decisions of the household. With the increased opportunity for education came an interesting change in the attitudes of men. Magnarella found that men with higher education were more likely to consult their wives in family matters than were their less educated predecessors and peers. This could be for two reasons: “(1) the wives of those with higher educations were probably educated themselves and thus capableYof contributing to an important family decision, and (2) educated males are probably less likely to demand passive subservience of their wives and more likely to be open to their opinions and ideas (p. 367).” The increasing importance in women’s roles profoundly affects interaction with the entire family system.
Through the examination of these areas of kinship Magnarella aptly applies his theory that kinship can be evaluated according to people’s goals, the change of these goals over time, and the interaction with kin in order to accomplish these goals. Magnarella stresses the proposition that one could be mislead by looking at ideals rather than actual practice. There are also many distracting factors, such as migration and military service that affect how people live and mask the actual perceptions of a society. The approach allows the researcher to understand actual practices and attitudes of kinship by examining how perceptions have changed and the effects of these changes. The article is well organized according to the three aspects of Magnarella’s theory, and the application of his approach seems to work reasonably with the examples given. Each example is explained in respect to its starting point within the culture, its progression, and its effects on kinship dynamics.
JESSICA ERIN HAYES North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller).
Patrick, Ralph; Troyler, H.A. Papago Indian Modernization: A Community Scale for Health Research. Human Organization Summer 1972 Vol. 31(2):127-137
According to Patrick and Troyler, technological revolutions not only play a role in societal modernization but also affect health. They argue that the transition from rural-agrarian to urban-industrial life brings changes in social and cultural arrangements at a rate that far exceeds the time scale of biological adaptation (p. 129). Patrick and Troyler hypothesize that “Rapid social and cultural change will…raise the probability of incongruity between culture and the social situation in which groups live and function”(p. 129). They argue that these changes may affect rates of somatic and psychosomatic disease. To test their hypothesis, Patrick and Troyler selected the Papago, a Native American group from Arizona. They explain the selection criteria that led them to choose this group for their study. The criteria specifically involved finding evidence of rapid culture change. Too, the tribal population of the Papago was enumerated in a population register. That register provided Patrick and Troyler with a base for the computation of rates of health states and also the ability to select samples with particular characteristics.
Patrick and Troyler describe the steps involved in creating their “incongruity index.” They involved ranking settlements from “most traditional” to “most acculturated”, or “most modern” (p. 129). Patrick and Troyler then elaborate on the characteristics of their eight person panel whom they selected to judge “this complex modernization process.” The panel included four Anglos and four Papagos. They analyze patterns in the data that they received from their panel of judges, and elaborate on the geographical and economic patterns they detect in relation to levels of modernization.
In sum, Patrick and Troyler accomplished the central task of their project, which was to create a useful to measure modernization levels and the effects of modernization on health. They end by noting that they plan to present their findings on Athe relation of modernization to certain health variables…elsewhere” (p. 135).
SEAN BAILEY North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Patrick, Ralph and H.A. Tyroler. Epidemiologic Studies of Papago Indian Mortality. Human Organization, 1972 Vol.31(2):163-170.
The population register of the Papago Indians in Arizona presents a unique resource for the study and analysis of mortality rates among Native Americans due to the fact that most tribes lack such census information. Patrick and Tyroler hypothesize that using this register to study Papago mortality rates will verify the potential of such registers to study epidemiological (disease) patterns among other Native American groups. To test the hypothesis, the two gather mortality information from the death certificates of those related to registered Papago Indians for the decade 1950-1959. They then compare this information to white and non-white population mortality information in Arizona for the same period. The data is analyzed according to sex, age, cause of death, modernity of living conditions, and attendance at death.
After completion of analysis, Patrick and Tyroler conclude that the data does not support their hypothesis. When categorized according to sex, age, and cause of death, the data suggests mortality rates similar to the white and non-white populations of Arizona. Surprisingly, the modernity of living conditions has less impact on mortality rates than expected. However, the data for those having attendance at death does fit. Those in more modern areas are more likely to have attendance than those in less modern areas. A reason for this discrepancy is believed to be the inaccuracy of the register, due to the difficulty of gathering definite information in rural areas. As a result, no matter how complete or updated the register is kept, Patrick and Tyroler conclude that it is not a reliable source for epidemiological studies.
CLARITY RANKING: 4
KENNETH R. CLINE, JR. North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Perry, Stewart E. Black Institutions, Black Separatism, and Ghetto Economic Development. Human Organization 1972 Vol. 31(3): 271-277.
At the time of the article’s publication, Perry states that black leaders are making demands for separate black economic institutions. While such demands appear to reinforce segregation and separation, Perry argues that they work to the contrary. He claims that full-scale integration of blacks and whites in the US would be accelerated by the construction of black economic institutions in US city ghettos. He adds that his argument is based on impressionistic experience and that systematic scientific research will need to be done to confirm or deny his argument.
Perry’s evidence comes from his experience working with a Special Impact program in Cleveland, developed to create a community development corporation created and run by blacks. Perry first noticed that while the top three officers of the program were militantly black, they developed and maintained commitments with the white community, including with top financial and industrial figures. Perry uses this evidence, backed by the definition of integration, to introduce the idea of equal-status interaction. He states that “integration is a relationship of interracial interaction among those of socially defined, equal status” (p. 274). If blacks and whites deal with each other through business, they form relationships of equal-status. Relationships appropriate to conventional business situations include common courtesies of address and forms of businessmen’s hospitality.
Perry also notes that this kind of interaction would only be created in some kinds of economic institutions. While small convenience stores in the ghetto would not conduct interaction between whites and blacks, manufacturing and large retail distribution institutions would. The latter businesses would have a general market, which would include bargaining relationships with whites. Initiation of many new types of black economic institutions, especially those in manufacturing, retail and service fields, would increase integration because they would provide new contexts for personal and economic interaction with whites.
The one condition that has always prevented blacks from developing an equal-status relationship with whites through business activity is the lack of significant capital required to establish noteworthy businesses. Perry advocates the program to provide the capital needed, citing the beneficial evidence listed.
HEATHER FERRELL North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Pollnac B. Richard, Robbins C. Michael. Gratification Patterns and Modernization in Rural Buganda. Human Organization 1972 Vol. 331 (1): 63-72.
The authors investigated the relationship between goal gratification and the effects of modernization among the rural Buganda living in Uganda. They also examined the findings and interpretations of prior researchers. The authors present three hypotheses. First, more modernized individuals postpone goal gratification. Second, younger individuals are more likely to postpone goal gratification than those who are older. Third, those with greater economic access and security will exhibit a greater degree of deferred goal gratification than those with less. This article presents the results of two studies. The first study involved data collection, and the second explored the creation of new measures for assessing gratification patterns and modernization.
Data came from a questionnaire administered as part of a household survey. The survey population consisted of 109 households containing 519 individuals that were randomly selected from a parish. For the first study the researchers followed a scale of modernization previously established in earlier studies. The scale contained 25 items such as “knowledge of modern culture, the adoption of modern values, and the ownership of modern materials” (p. 65). The authors ran statistical tests such as alpha tests and correlations on the data. Gratification patterns were measured by answers to categorical questions that were designated as either deferred goal gratification or immediate goal gratification. Two measures of economic access as well as age were also taken into account. Results showed that at the .05 level of significance only the second part of the hypothesis held true. The researchers thought that the weak relationship of the economic predisposition hypothesis was due to inadequate measurements. Overall, their findings were inconsistent with the earlier research that suggests that the degree of delayed gratification should increase with increased modernization and economic security. This finding led them to construct the second study.
The second study used different standards for measuring the degree of modernization including exposure to magazines, level of education and “cosmopolitanness.” The amount of variance explained by the new approach was still low and the findings were similar to those of the first study. This finding led the authors to reevaluate the assumption of a linear relationship between modernization and gratification patterns. When they used a non-linear relationship pattern the results they got were still low, but statistically significant. A logarithmic approach demonstrated the tendency for deferring gratification to “increase, level off, then decrease slightly as the degree of modernization increases” (p. 70).
The authors concluded by stating that in this sample younger and more modernized individuals were more likely to manifest deferred goal gratification. They also noted that the relationship between modernization (as they classify it) and postponed gratification was best described as non-linear. Finally, they made suggestions for future studies on the subject matter and emphasized that “deferred gratification is intimately related to economic and community development.” (p. 71).
CLARITY RANKING: 5
LARISA YASINOVSKAYA North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller).
Poggie, John J. Jr. Toward Quality Control in Key Informant Data. Human Organization, Spring, 1972. Vol. 31 (1):23-30
Since Louis Henry Morgan’s work with the Iroquois during the nineteenth century, key informants have been an integral part of anthropological research. John J. Poggie Jr. questions the reliability and precision of informant data commonly used in anthropological research. He begins by examining an earlier inquiry into informant reliability conducted by R.C. and F.W. Young. Poggie then conducts his own experiment in the same village, this time to investigate precision.
Poggie introduces the investigation by defining the type of key informant data he seeks to obtain. Poggie is concerned with the use of short-term key informants as a source of knowledge. When using this method, an anthropologist selects an interview subject because of his or her access to information that is of interest to the anthropologist. These individuals are often judges, mayors, leaders, or others who would have access to information about the local township or area in question. Short-term simply means the researchers involved have not built a long-term relationship with these individuals. Validity of informant data is tested in terms of reliability and precision. Poggie defines reliability as the measure of internal correlation between the responses of informants, or, in other words, whether the informants’ responses agree with each other. Precision refers to how close a subject’s responses are to reality. Poggie states that the Young’s data investigated informants’ reliability, and found that informants tended to be reliable when questions concerned the community on directly observable information, requiring little interpretation. Informants tended to be unreliable concerning issues that required inferences or judgment.
Poggie expands the Young’s research by conducting experiments to measure the precision of key informants. To define what is the truth or reality for each question, Poggie uses a standardized survey that is sent to randomly selected individuals in the community. Poggie then compares the results of this survey to the responses of the informants to evaluate the accuracy of key informants responses. Examples of questions include: “where do the majority of people from this town go to market?” (p. 26) to “what percentage of the people sleep in beds?”(p. 28). Poggie quantifies these answers using various methods, such as forcing the respondent to choose one value from a list. Poggie then assesses the correlation between the key informants’ responses and the responses of those in the random survey.
Poggie finds that informants tend to be more accurate about some types of questions and less accurate on others. Like the Youngs before him, Poggie finds that informants tend to be accurate about “directly observable public phenomena” (p. 28). Poggie concludes that anthropologists should continue using informants. However, he warns that informant information may be unreliable and imprecise in certain domains, while reliable and precise in others. Poggie recommends that informant research methodology guidelines be improved to incorporate ways in which key informants are sometime reliable and precise.
JAMES FARLOW North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Scott, Harrison Gordon. Flow of Communication Between Government Agencies and Eskimo Villages. Human Organization 1972 Vol.31 (1): 1-9.
Harrison discusses how information is transmitted from outside agencies to Eskimo villages. He asserts that no mass media system exists to keep rural Alaskans in contact with the outside world. Rural Alaskans do have a structure of communication that is similar to mass media which works well for them, however. Almost all information that outside agencies bring to the village needs to be mediated. While most Eskimos have some knowledge of the English language, only a few are fully conversant in both the Eskimo and English languages. When quasi-governmental agencies need to transmit information to a village they use an individual conversant in both languages as a mediator. Communication mediation provides interpretation of agency messages to Eskimo villages, as well as an integrative mechanism for village society.
Harrison obtains his data by employing the research methods of participant observation and multiple survey techniques. Harrison breaks mediators down into two categories: formal and informal mediators. The formal mediators are usually the members of the village council. The members of this council generally deal with situations in which new agencies want to make contact with a village. The informal mediators are usually ordinary villagers, but they have a good working knowledge of both languages. These people usually deal with established agencies that have prolonged contact with the village. This type of communication system has a weakness. Transmission of the agency’s message is limited to the mediator’s interpretation of what the message means and the message’s importance. An advantage of communication mediation is that representatives from agencies do not have to travel door-to-door to present villagers with information they will most likely not understand. Additionally, the communication system also reinforces social interaction and keeps inter-village communication lines open.
Harrison does an excellent job of explaining the complexities of what superficially seems like a simple communication system. He knows the people well and explains his methods in detail. He might have offered a few more examples of what kinds of information would be passed on and what kinds would be filtered out, but overall the cases he reviewed were well explained.
CLARITY RANKING: 4
BRANDON ZEI North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Sanday, Peggy. On the Causes of IQ Differences between Groups and Implications for Social Policy. Human Organization Winter, 1972 Vol.31(4):411-424.
This article focuses on the debate of nature (genetics) versus nurture (the environment) to explain racial differences in IQ. The author, Peggy Sanday, reanalyzes the methods of the highly publicized Jensen study (1967; 1969). Jensen had concluded that IQ differences between whites and blacks were due more to genetic factors than environmental influences. His findings implied that black people were inferior based on low IQ test scores. Within five days after Jensen’s research hit the headlines in a Virginia newspaper, a suit was filed to prevent the integration of blacks into two Virginia county school systems that cited Jensen’s findings. Sanday examines Jensen’s hypotheses, methods, and conclusions, and argues that Jensen misinterprets the meaning of the concept of “heritability” and uses a problematic formulation for figuring “heritability.” She argues that when environmental factors were controlled in several similar studies, the correlation between IQ and race vanished.
Sanday contends that IQ differences between groups may be explained by environmental factors. In addition to her statistical reanalysis, Sanday presents findings from other studies that convincingly support the environmental explanation of IQ differences between groups. For example, the Cronbach and Drenth (1972) study show that orphanage children, mountain children, and deaf children in the U.S. exhibit similar scores to blacks and low socioeconomic white children. These groups are isolated in varying degrees from the American cultural mainstream of white middle and upper classes. She also addresses research that shows the content of IQ test items is typically related to experience and learning only available in middle and upper class families.
Sanday recommends other anthropologists become familiar with statistical methods (perhaps so they can read and understand her paper). Her article shows why statistical knowledge is useful for anthropologists. Because she was able to follow Jensen’s methodological approaches, she discovered flaws in his method that contributed to misleading results/conclusions.
She highlights controversial social policy and ethical issues based on the claims of social science research. She provides the example of the impact from Jensen’s original article. However, Sanday does not recommend an approach to prevent future controversy stemming from social science research.
I found the introduction and conclusion sections of the paper interesting and relatively easy to understand. However, following her reanalysis of Jensen’s methods and trying to sort out the difference between her concept (Greg and Sanday, 1971) of ‘heritability’ and Jensen’s concept of ‘heritability,’ left me confused. I felt like I needed to have read a number of the articles she referenced before I could fully understand this article.
CLARITY RANKING: 3
DIANE GIFFORD North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Savishinsky, Joel S. Coping with Feuding: The Missionary, the Fur Trade, and the Ethnographer. Human Organization Fall, 1972 Vol.31(3):281-290.
The effect of nonnative people’s interactions among the natives during an ethnological study is the focus of Savishinsky’s article on Athabascan-speaking group of Hare Indians living near Colville Lake in Canada. Specifically, his study explores the effects of feuding between a fur trader and a missionary on the Hare, particularly focusing on the three dimensions of the situation. The first is the relationships among the nonnative feuding parties, the natives, and the ethnographer. The second is how these relationships affect the native inhabitants. The third is the effects of the feud on the ethnological research process. Savishinsky examines how the feuding parties manipulate the natives, and how the natives learn to use the situation to their advantage. He argues that the feud and the relationships it creates have specific cultural consequences for the native people. Among these are “a means of displacing anger and responsibility from some unrelated but equally stressful areas of life,” as well as fostering a sense of native social cohesion (p. 282).
Savishinsky describes his own experiences within the context of the feud and how they affected his research within the group. He recalls his resistance to being drawn into a conflict between a missionary and a fur trader. Consequently, the similarity between the natives’ struggle to remain neutral and his own helped establish an open dialogue with tribal members early in his research. In describing his perceptions of the influences on native life, native testimony he uses parallels his observations. The testimony also supports his conclusion that the feud was a cohesive force among the Indians. Savishinsky cites other social scientists including as Dunning, Gluckman, and Vallee to support his analysis. This article presents a clear, straightforward description of the situation within the Colville Lake tribe, even as it reveals the fragile nature of the affiliations of tribal members to each of the feuding parties.
THOMAS SCHRAM North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Smith, David G. Modernization, Population Dispersion, and Papago Genetic Integrity. Human Organization 1972 Vol. 31(2):187-199.
It has been assumed that Papago Indians follow aboriginal patterns in choosing mates. Smith uses significant statistical evidence to prove otherwise. He divides Papagos into three groups according to the type of area in which they live: traditional villages, modern villages, and non-Indian societies. Using the Papago population register, which contains information about the population from 1875-1960, he calculates three indices to determine patterns of Papago breeding. The village and district exogamy indices determine how many people chose a mate from outside their village or district, respectively. The village and district relatedness indices explain the proportion of related individuals within these two areas. Finally, the unrelated individuals index shows how many people are not related to any of the lineages in that particular community.
Smith found that exogamy increased with every generation, but the degree of relatedness varied. He offers the explanation that traditional villages, which lose many people to emigration, allow members to marry outsiders so inbreeding does not occur. Children produced in these marriages are considered part of the lineage of the village. There are several other reasons for the statistical results that Smith calculated. Papago Indians were nomadic until reservations were first built during the early years of the twentieth century. The largest, most modern reservations are a result of the efforts of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, which provided more places for the Papagos to work and better equipment. In the late 1930s, some Papagos left reservations to work on cotton farms permanently.
Smith concludes that the Papagos follow a cycle in which they choose mates outside their communities during less secure times and marry within the community when the population is stable. This article is written with the assumption that the reader has a fairly strong statistical background. Some of the statistics could bear further explaining, but the introductory information and conclusions Smith draws are understandable.
CLARITY RANKING: 3
REBECCA ANDERSON North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Stull, Donald D. Victims of Modernization: Accident Rates and Papago Indian Adjustment. Human Organization 1972, Vol. 3: 227-240.
Stull emphasizes the impact of stresses on the Papago Indians, and analyzes their adaptive responses in order to determine if there is a correlation between modernization effects and high accident rates among the Papago. He uses a comparative system of analysis, focusing on individuals and their families. While reading this article, one should take into consideration Stull’s definition of modernization. He defines modernization as a multilineal process that creates and shapes an individual’s life style. Stull imagines that the impact of modernization is “asymmetrically distributed” (p. 229), and most directly affects the individual versus a group or an entire population. The author addresses four groups with the same criteria in an effort to determine which individuals are most affected by the stresses of modernization. He notes that there is an interaction effect between the progressive community and the modern individual that may increase the individual’s risk for accidental injury. Consequently, Stull hypothesizes, within the realm of these criteria there is an “interaction between the modern individual living in modern progressive communities” (p. 227) which increases their levels of stress and contributes to accidental injury.
A study designed by Patrick and Tyroler (1972) is used in combination with 1969-70 accidental injury data as an index to measure the modern and traditional individuals in both modern and traditional villages. Different demographics such as age, race, sex, and marital and socioeconomic status were controlled for. The variants account for the asymmetrical distribution of modernization and the impacts it has. Stull concludes through the categorical differences listed above that “modern individuals sustain twice the rate of accidental injury befalling the traditional members of the study population” (p. 236).
This article effectively illustrates that the high accident rates among the Papago were being caused and intensified by the stresses of modernization. Stull also concludes that “either progressive or conservative communities might be loci of more intensive stresses associated with modernization” (p. 238). However, further inquiry is needed to assess better the indicators of increased personal stress in both the traditional and modern individual.
CLARITY RANKING: 4
KIMBERLY SOULES North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Uhlmann, Julie M. The Impact of Modernization on Papago Indian Fertility. Human Organization Summer 1972 Vol.31(2): 149-161.
Julie M. Uhlmann examines the impact of demographic modernization on Papago Indian fertility. The Papago Indians of Arizona are a partially acculturated population which is undergoing a transition from reservation life to modern employment. These circumstances provide an ideal opportunity to analyze fertility trends as they relate to the continuing modernization process. A demographically modern population is distinguished by a low birth rate and low mortality rate. There are three main stages of demographic modernization. Stage one is distinguished by maximum birth and death rates and short life expectancies. Stage two, the population explosion stage, is recognized by a decline in death rates while birth rates remain high. The final stage is characterized by both low birth and death rates.
The author uses the Papago population register to compare birth and mortality rates of the total Papago population to the total Arizona population and the total United States population. She compared four variables of fertility from the register: average number of children, average age of mother at birth of first child, average age of mother at birth of last child, and fertility span. This comparison revealed that women were having the same number of children at an earlier age and commencing their fertility span sooner, therefore more of the population is alive at once. The author relied on the same Papago population register to analyze mortality rates. She discovered that the average age at death for a Papago Indian was 34 from the years 1950-1959. She compared this finding to an average age at death of 62.9 years for the United States population during 1960. These two conclusions about birth and mortality demonstrate that the Papago population is in stage two, or the population explosion stage, of demographic modernization. That is, the death rate is low compared to the birth rate.
Uhlmann then wanted to research the possibility of future trends towards lower fertility for the Papago by studying modern Papago populations. The author compared four modern communities and four traditional communities, again utilizing data from the Papago population register. However, Tucson, the only urban community, was the only community that demonstrated significant characteristics of demographic modernization. The realization of demographic modernization being based on a urban-rural dichotomy changed the research to studying Tucson as compared to the other seven rural communities. The same four characteristics of fertility from the initial research were utilized again when comparing Tucson fertility to demographically modernized Papago Indians. The author concluded that while most of the Papago Indians are in stage two, approximately 9% of Tucson women are entering stage three, which leaves the urban center of Tucson on the verge of a change in demographic modernization for the Papago Indians.
NICOLE MOODY North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)
Weppner, Robert S. Socioeconomic Barriers to Assimilation of Navajo Migrants. Human Organization Fall, 1972 Vol.31(3):303-314.
In 1952, the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) started a program called the Relocation Service Program, which provided financial aid for Native Americans to relocate themselves from their reservation to an industrial area where year-round work was available. More than 500 Navajo men and their families relocated to Denver, Colorado. From these individuals, Theodore D. Graves and his research assistant, Robert S. Weppner, gathered their sample groups of migrant workers. Graves and Weppner interviewed a group of migrant workers who had lived in Denver over 18 months and categorized the group “Adjusted Stayers.” The categorization was based on the BIA’s criterion for economic adjustment. The second group of migrants sampled was comprised of Navajo men who left Denver before 18 months were up. The group was categorized as “Unadjusted Leavers”. Two other groups were also interviewed. One was a group of Anglo blue-collar workers in Denver, which were used as AYrepresentative members of the larger culture” (p. 305). The other group consisted of the employers of the of both Anglo and Navajo migrant workers. The study was conducted to determine what characteristics aid in the successful assimilation of non-Western peoples into Western socioeconomic society.
The socioeconomic variables that were considered prior to urban relocation included vocational training level, period of premigration work, premigration wages, prior urban experience, age, marital status, social ties to Denver, and linguistic ability. Certain variables were omitted for the Anglo workers. Employer ratings of Navajo and Anglo workers were quantified and compared, as were the economic status of both groups. Economic status variables included initial economic experience, starting and progressive wages, as well as job placement. Assimilation indices based on the variables examined were compared between the Navajo workers who stayed in Denver more than 18 months and those who did not.
The results showed that Stayers and Leavers were fairly similar in their premigration attributes. More Stayers, however, were married. Stayers were also more frequently hired to do jobs that matched their vocational training. More Stayers than Leavers had a higher starting wage. When the Stayers were compared to the Anglos, many Stayers had entered the job market on an equal level with the blue collar Anglos. Some migrants were getting jobs that they were trained for. They were receiving job levels on par with the Anglos, but despite this, the Navajo Stayers were receiving less pay. On top of this, employer ratings of the Stayers were essentially equal with those of the Anglos, and Stayers were rated higher than Anglos on overall performance which, seemed like evidence for discrimination, a factor that impedes assimilation. The results of the data analysis also showed that Navajo migrants who stayed in Denver became more involved in Indian affairs such as the pan-Indian Movement in Denver (White Buffalo Council). The increase in Navajo migrants’ participation in such movements and organizations suggests a desire to have a social niche, but because of discrimination, becoming a part of the larger Anglo society was less inviting than becoming active in Indian affairs.
CLARITY RANKING: 4
JAMES T. DANIELS, JR. North Carolina State University (Anne Schiller)