American Anthropologist 1937

Beaglehole, Ernest. Polynesian Anthropology Today. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:213-221.

The First Pan Pacific Science Conference convened in 1920 to determine a comprehensive research program for Polynesia, with special attention to the fields of linguistics, cultural history and racial affinities. Because of rapidly disappearing essential data, participants agreed upon a ten-year program. In 1928, Ernest Beaglehole evaluated what had been accomplished and suggested what remained to be done. He indicates that sufficient surface data from almost all of the islands in the Polynesia Triangle have been collected. However, there is a lack of material necessary to formulate the more implicit patterns of culture. Physical anthropology, in the form of anthropometric measurements and investigation of blood groups, is adequately covered and nearly complete. Linguistics remains chaotic and is no further along than in 1920.

Collection of data for Polynesia, Hawaii and New Zealand has been extensive. Beaglehole believes that the time has come to make a concentrated effort in research on the Fiji area, islands in the Polynesia Western Pacific such as Rennel and Bellona, which represent Stone Age culture untouched by missionaries or commercial exploitation, and the Gilbert Islands, a meeting place of Polynesia and Micronesia culture. Aspects of Polynesian culture have not been explored adequately, for example in areas such as the impact of culture upon the typical Polynesians growing up. Beaglehole recommends that a life history study of children from birth through the first five years would be helpful in determining adaptations made. He states that Polynesian anthropology has reached a crossroad where it should be reoriented to understanding how and why Polynesian culture works, and how the culture gives meaning to the individual Polynesian.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
JOYCE ASKEW University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich).

Beaglehole, Ernest. Polynesian Anthropology Today. American Anthropology, 1937 Vol.39:213-221.

Ernest Beaglehole reports the status of various anthropological projects in “Polynesian Anthropology Today.” To begin, he discusses the foundation for current Polynesian Anthropology, the First Pan-Pacific Science Conference in 1920. Renowned scientists met and discussed the present and immediate future of Polynesian study. Among the goals reported from the meeting included: coordinating synthetic work, organizing previous surveys and focusing research in neglected fields such as linguistics, cultural history and race. Moreover, the convention recognized the urgency to attack these objectives by essentially setting 1930 as a deadline for these aims to be realized.

Beaglehole then reports on the progress (or lack there of) made since this mad rush toward Oceania. First, he declares that by 1928 “for most islands about seventy-five percent of the ascertainable data had been gathered” (Beaglehole 214). Along with this preliminary figure, the author begins a series of individual assessments of the anthropological status of different subjects and locations, mainly listing the major short-comings of the advance.

For instance, he notes the blatant absence of linguistic studies in Polynesia. One reason for neglect, he argues, missionaries (which made contact long before anthropologists) attempted to translate many Polynesian words to create an awkward alphabet for printing the Bible. Unfortunately, these attempts were painfully unscientific and “sometimes laughable in their absurdity” (216). Next, he questions the scope of the inquiry as a whole. He suggests that future research may be done outside the perimeters set by the 1920 convention. More specifically, he names two islands, Rennell and Bellona, which are said to be “practically untouched by missionary or commercial exploitation” (Beaglehole 217). Beaglehole stresses the urgency for topics to be examined before they dissolve in time.

The author continues down his list of specific suggestions and priorities for quickly and systematically researching Polynesia. Through this method of filling gaps, Beaglehole’s objective is to round out the anthropological understanding of Polynesia as a whole. Namely, he selects various topics of inquires from many islands of Oceania: Samoa, the Ellice group, Glibert Islands, Mortlock Islands, Tonga, Marquesas, Hawaii and New Zealand. In the end, he gives two final overarching unknown territories of Polynesia: life of Polynesian children and pattern configuration of Polynesian culture.

Ernest Beaglehole’s purpose in “Polynesian Anthropology Today” was not merely to describe the progress made in this field, but rather to look toward the future. Although he indeed mentions these advancements, a majority of the essay deals with areas of study in need of examination. Realizing fully the factor of time in the preservation of native Polynesian culture, the author stresses an agenda that walks a thin live between quality and quantity.

CLARITY: 5
TOM PELLMAN Indiana University (Anya Royce)

Boas, Franz. Waldemar Bogoras. American Anthropologist. 1937 Vol.39:314-315.

This is a short biographical sketch of Boas’ friend and expatriate, Waldemar Bogoras, who died May 11, 1936. Bogoras, exiled to Siberia as a youth, lived with and observed the natives of eastern Siberia. He was an integral part of the Jesup Expedition’s study of the tribes of the North Pacific Coast. Through the Jesup Expedition and the Petersburg Academy of Sciences, Bogoras published his fieldwork on the Chukchee. Boas praises Bogoras’ artistic gifts (he also wrote novels under the pen name Tan), scientific insight, power of observation, descriptive clarity, and careful analysis of observed facts. Following his field work with the Jesup Expedition, Bogoras lived in the United States for several years.

Upon his return to Russia, Bogoras worked in the Museum of the Academy of Sciences. He was not identified with his work among the northern Tribes of Siberia until after the Revolution. It was then he paved the way to give tribal Siberians greater economic security. Between 1899 and 1930, Bogoras published 22 articles on such topics as Chukchee language, folk-lore, mythology, shamanic call, primitive religion, and tales of field work in polar conditions. In his later years, as Boas notes, Bogoras spoke more from the artist perspective than the scientist. Bogoras referred to this “freer imagination” as the “grand generalization of anthropology” (p. 314). Bogoras’ last public appearance in New York was in 1928, when he presented at the Congress of Americanists, as a Delegate of the Academy of Science in Leningrad. Boas, and others who knew Bogoras, remembered him for his scholarship and enthusiasm; and for those who knew him well, a valued friendship.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
PEGGY VERRET University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Childe, V. Gordon. The Antiquity of the British Bronze Age. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:1-22.

In the article, V. Gordon Childe examines the data used to determine the length of time of the British Bronze Age. Through analysis of funeral and hoard site inventories in England, Ireland and western and northern portions of the European continent, Gordon proposes that the “British Bronze industry had reached a mature stage of development while North Europe was still formally and economically Neolithic” (p.12). This stance contradicts earlier suppositions that bronze-working technology was imported to Britain and therefore started and ended later in the British Isles than in the rest of Europe.

Childe believes there are three primary reasons for the misinterpretation of the British dates. First, there were “poor and monotonous” material findings in Briton compared to the findings in Europe, and thus an inflation of previous European findings. Second, the location and distribution of sites led to a “Lowland” interpretation, with material and technological development moving northward from the southern end of the British Isles. And third, the rich amounts of minerals located in the British Isles, according to Childe, allowed British and Irish craftsmen to develop their skills earlier than those on the continent. These minerals, in fact, further allowed a transmission of technology from the northern section of the British Isles, through to the Isle’s southern region and onto the continent, rather then the reverse. In supporting his argument, Childe provides numerous pictures, drawings and diagrams of sites and materials found in various locations.

Childe thinks that the previous dates for both the British Isles and continental New Stone and Bronze Ages need to be modified, and that further examination of the validity of the dates must be done. This evaluation would allow scholars to place the events in these areas into closer proximity to the events in Crete, Egypt and Sumer and would provide a more complete understanding of the prehistoric age.

CLARITY: 2
WENDY SHIMMIN University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Collins, Henry B. Jr. Culture Migrations and Contacts in the Bering Sea Region American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:375-384.

The main purpose of this article is to show that the Point Barrow Eskimo tribe living in Alaska today is linked to the ancient Thule Eskimo tribes. They can be traced by migration patterns and tribal behaviors. By looking at tribal behaviors of present Eskimo tribes in Alaska, the Point Barrow Eskimo tribe is set apart from all of the other Alaskan tribes collectively. Researchers have found a great number of similarities shared between the ancient Thule and present Point Barrow Eskimo tribes, including house structures, linguistics, crafts, ideals, tools and patterns of folklore. The parallels in culture shared by both groups are unique because they do not share, even remotely, similar qualities with any other groups of their region. Dismembered burials, trophy heads, utilization of human bones and fish vertebra rings are a few examples.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
NIQOLE MIESSNER University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Davidson, D.S. The Question of Relationship between the Cultures of Australia and Tierra del Fuego. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39: 229-243.

D.S. Davidson’s article critiques the theories of Rivet and Koppers regarding the historical unity of the two cultures. Koppers’ theory proposes that two groups from the same culture in Asia traveled to South America via the Bering Strait and to Australia via the East Indies and New Guinea. Rivet’s theory proposes the movement of Australians from their historic habitat, Australia, to Tierra del Fuego, initially via the islands of Melanesia and Polynesia 3,000 years ago and later via Antarctica 6,000 years ago. The majority of Davidson’s article focuses on the theories of Rivet, who fails to present any evidence for the means of travel for the Australians and ignores the environmental difficulties, which would have made the journey of Australians impossible. Davidson discounts the evidence Rivet relies on to support a theory of historical cultural unity as being simplistic , superficial and insufficient.

Davidson briefly notes that although Koppers’ theory of a group traveling across the Bering Strait is likely, his theory of historical cultural unity is not supported for the same reasons as Rivet’s theory. Koppers excludes from consideration that the general traits could be the result of similar economic influences, but includes various simplistic and superficial similarities as confirmation of common origins.

Both theorists are criticized for a lack of substantial evidence, using superficial commonalties between the two cultures and ignoring the possibilities of more realistic explanations. Thus, Davidson concludes that neither theorist provides satisfactory evidence supporting the theory that the basic cultures of Australia and Tierra del Fuego are historically related.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
HANNA VERLANDER University of New Orleans (David Beriss).

Davidson, D. S. The Question of Relationship Between the Cultures of Australia and Tierra del Fuego. American Anthropologist, 1937. Vol.39: 229-243.

This article by D. S. Davidson examines two theories on a historical relationship between the peoples of Australia and Tierra del Fuego. The two theories, one from Koppers and the other from Rivet, are systematically analyzed and then critiqued by the author.

Koppers explained that the two cultures were related by means of a common ancient parent culture located in Asia from which both migrated to their latter locations, Australians by means of the East Indies and New Guinea and the Fuegians via the Bering Strait. Though Davidson sees this migration as a possibility, he is not convinced because most of the traits Koppers posits are “so simple, so general, or so ambiguous in meaning”(p 239) that there can be no substantial level for adequate comparison.

Rivet believed that the Fuegian culture is a direct descendant of the Australian with the ancient Australians traveling between 3,000 and 6,000 years ago. His initial claim was that a group of Australians traveled from the continent to South America via the islands of Melanesia and Polynesia approximately 3,000 years ago. He later abandoned this theory in favor of a more land-based route across Antartica some 6,000 years ago. In his analysis, Davidson divides the evidence into three categories: physical features, linguistics, and cultural elements. He dismisses the first two citing Rivet’s omission of data showing similar physical features among peoples of North America and northeast Siberia and a lack of scholarly agreement about possible linguistic connections. The third category, cultural factors, constitutes the bulk of Rivet’s theory. For Davidson, the most important problem is that Rivet attributes seagoing vessels to the ancient Australians when there is no proof for them. In fact, says Davidson, there is no cultural evidence that Australians ever went farther than to the island of New Guinea. He discusses other cultural similarities: beehive huts with similar design, which lacks evidentiary support; skin mantles, which were so simple that they could easily have been devised by any hunting people seeking protection from the element; and bark canoes of several pieces, which are “far from being identical” (p 236). The only cultural feature that Davidson could not dismiss is that of similar half-hitch coiled basketry. Even here, the author gives a number of possible explanations which do not support Rivet’s theory, mainly the fact that such techniques were also prevalent in Japan making Koppers’ theory a more plausible explanation. Finally, Davidson cites both common migrational needs of people and geological evidence to dismiss Rivet’s claim that a change in glacial conditions on Antarctica would have made this trip possible.

CLARITY: 4
M. KELLY DAVIES Indiana University (Anya Peterson Royce)

Davis, Kingsley and W. Lloyd Warner. Structural Analysis of Kinship. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:291-313.

In this article, Kingsley Davis and W. Lloyd Warner formulate a system of kinship, using symbols and graphs, with which one can compare and contrast different kinship organizations among cultures. They explain that kinship can be viewed on two levels: biological and social. They argue that the variable, sociological patterns of kinship are based on the fixed, biological structures, so that analyzing the biological aspects of kinship will lead to a greater understanding of social patterns in different kinship systems.

They begin by defining biological kinship terms such as birth-cycle and sibling-link and then placing them on two axes, vertical and horizontal. The vertical axis represents time and genetic processes, while the horizontal represents collateral relationships such as the sibling-link. They show how these two axes intersect and therefore depict graphically the distance of a particular relative to ego. They stress, however, that this representation is most true to reality when considering the immediate family, since the outer reaches of kinship are often more variable.

Next, the authors turn to terminology and how it “bridges the gap between the biological and the sociological levels” (p.289). They believe that terminology systems of kinship are what distinguish one culture from another. They go on to describe and define the difference between classificatory, descriptive, and isolating systems of kinship, all which designate people or categories of people in different ways. The authors also describe three linguistic devices used by certain cultures. They are primary terms, categorical words, and combined terms. They then devise an apparatus of symbols to represent all of these terms and categories, for convenient representation of kinship systems, suggesting that, “this should enable the student to correlate with greater precision types of nomenclature with types of societies, and particular features of kinship with particular features of social organization” (p.307).

CLARITY RANKING: 2
REBECCA ERATH University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Devereux, George. Mohave Soul Concepts. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 35:417-422

This article discusses Mohave concepts of souls. It covers the Mohave explanation for the origins of souls as well as their conception of four different types of souls. Devereux begins by explaining the four soul types: the real shadow, the power soul, the worldly wealth, and the last soul that is only seen at death. Each soul type contributes to the individual in different ways in both life and death. Devereux explains the concept of the souls of twins as being immortal. He discusses how witchcraft and shamanism play a role in the nature of the souls. He explains that the souls wander for four nights and days until going to the land of the dead. Within this time period it is likely for the souls to appear in the dreams of survivors. But if the visits persist, a shaman must be called to visit the land of the dead. Different customs apply to different types of death. Witchcraft plays a major a role in how one treats the dead. Devereux goes on to explain that if twins are taken by witchcraft their immortality is lost. He even comments on the Mohave concept of soul with reference to insects and bugs.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
REBECCA C. MURRAY University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Eggan, Fred. Historical Changes in the Choctaw Kinship System. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:34-52.

In this article Eggan describes the Choctaw kinship system and its origins. He gives detailed descriptions and models of the five major kinship patterns in the Southwest. He outlines the ‘crow’ type and its variations: the Choctaw pattern, the Chickasaw pattern, the Creek pattern, the Cherokee pattern, and the Yuchi pattern. Eggan discusses the history of the Choctaw and its effects on the kinship system. He argues that the Choctaw pattern differs from the others due to a longer and more influential missionary period. The Choctaws were introduced to missions more than three decades before any of the other tribes in the Southwest. They were also more compliant to the missions’ demands to change their way of life. Eggan explains that the Choctaw were one of the first tribes to leave their land and move to so-called Indian territory. They were quick to adapt agriculture and to abandon their previous ways. The Choctaw eventually adapted patterns of male dominance from the missions and abandoned their matrilineal descent system. This is a basic example of acculturation. The Choctaw were dramatically influenced by the missions that were intent on changing the entirety of the social life of these tribes.

CLARITY RANKING: 1
REBECCA C. MURRAY University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Emaneau, M.B. Toda Marriage Regulations and Taboos. America Anthropologist. 1937 Vol. 39:103-112.

Emaneau attempts to supplement and shed more insight on W.H.R. Rivers’ detailed account of the marriage customs of the Toda people of the Nilgris in southern India about which he published thirty years earlier. Their marriage and social customs are complex, so terminology and meanings can easily be misconstrued, as was the case with Rivers. The Todas are divided into two main endogamous groups: tordas and touvilj. Each group is further divided in to smaller sects called mod, which can mean any of the small villages in which the people reside or any place that is the focus of community activity. Emaneau defines the complex legalities of paternity and kinship that inevitably define who may or may not be marriage partners of a man. It is concluded that a man must marry within his half of the tribe yet outside of his mod and outside of his own poljol, or kin group.

Emaneau examines the sexual relations of the tribe that don’t necessarily follow the same marriage regulations. Polyandry was practiced whereas a man can have sexual contact with a woman not of his half of the tribe though a man may not have intercourse with any woman that is related to him by a whole female or whole male line. The sexual customs are compared to that of Hindu south India. Emaneau criticizes Rivers’ definition of the general rule as being incorrect, inaccurate, and relying on guesswork. It is found to be great taboo and embarrassment among the people to speak of poljol, which gather their names from historical parables mostly ridiculing their ancestors’ stupidity. The name of each poljol of the tordas and touvilj is listed and defined.

The taboos of language and interaction between those of opposite sex are mainly geared to avoid the topic of sexual intercourse by a number of methods from preventing physical contact to the forbiddance of uttering certain words. Rivers’ and Emaneau’s accounts both disclose that there is generally irregular sexual intercourse. Taboos begin to operate at the onset of puberty and are not set by generation.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
ERICA L. CLARK University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Field, Henry and Eugene Prostov. Archaeology in the Soviet Union. American Anthropologist. 1937 Vol.39: 457-490.

Field and Prostov’s article is an exhaustive overview of archaeological work in the Soviet Union during the years of 1935 and 1936. The information is summarized by geographical region: Georgia and Abkhazia, Azerbaidzhan, Armenia, Daghertan, North Caucasus, Crimea and the Black Sea region, Ukraine, European Russia, Turkestan, Siberia. The information presented was compiled from publications obtained from the libraries of the Field Museum of Natural History and the Oriental institute of the University of Chicago, and the Peabody Museum of Harvard University. The article summarizes reports from hundreds of sites throughout the aforementioned regions.

The majority of archaeology in Soviet Union during this time was undertaken by two groups, the IAE (Institute of Anthropology and Ethnography of the State Academy of Sciences, Leningrad) and the GAIMK (State Academy for the History of Material culture, Leningrad). The authors note that the main focus of the IAE at the time was the study of “the genesis and development of the primitive communist society” (458) and it was partially through the investigation of the material remains of the past that an understanding of current Soviet culture was sought.

Sites examined encompassed a wide range of time periods, from the Lower Paleolithic of which twenty sites were found in Abkhazia alone, through the Neolithic, Medieval, and in to the 14th century AD. Significant attention is devoted to the region of Siberia. In 1935 the IAE began a project to synthesize the existing information concerning the Amur Valley. Explorers had gathered information on the area prior to the revolution, but the reports were scattered and fragmented. Over two hundred monumental sites were eventually inventoried, classified and mapped. The Altai expedition, headed by the GAIMK in cooperation with the Central Bureau of Highway Transportation (TSUDOTRANS) worked to examine and preserve seven hundred monuments of historical significance along a five hundred and seventy kilometer portion of the Chu-sk Highway. The Siberian Expedition uncovered two Paleolithic sites, at Ka-sk Mountain and the Ushkanka depression. The Sale-Kharda Expedition of the IAE excavated a site along the Polu- River in the Yamal National Territory dating to the fourth century AD. In addition to their summary of the findings from a total of fifty six Soviet expeditions the authors make reference to additional material received after the article went to press, namely the first issue of the new journal Sovetskaia Arkheologiia, a periodical sponsored by the IAE.
CLARITY RANKING: 3
CAELI ANCONA University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Goodwin, Grenville. The Characteristics and Function of Clan in A Southern Athapascan Culture. American Anthropologist. Vol. 39. 1937:394-407

The Southern Athapascan group treated here is the White Mountain Apache. The article examines the different clans and their functions. The clans are grouped into three phratries and one unrelated clan. An individual recognizes true blood kin by only true siblings, mother, and those with whom blood connection can be traced through the intermediacy of females of the clan irrespective of generation. It is a common custom to marry within the father’s clan, although they may address him in terms used before marriage. Clans and phratries are exogamous; marriages within them are considered incestuous and examples of witchcraft.

Clan is a factor in religion and ceremony, but a relatively unimportant one. Clan participation in ceremonies varies. In the girl’s puberty ritual, for example, the man and woman who attend with her must be outside her clan, because the woman endows her with womanly attributes other that those naturally inherited from the girl’s own clan. The man performs the same function.

Three fifths of the adults of the nuclear clan or group were women because of customary matrilocal residence. They usually belonged to the nuclear clans, but were sometimes related by marriage. Hereditary chieftainships followed clan and bloodlines. A chief must be of the same clan as his predecessor, and was usually his brother, sister’s son, or sister’s daughter’s son. No one type of blood relationship took precedence over another.

CLARITY RANKING: 2
LYNETTE GOUGH University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Hawley, Florence. Kokopelli, of the Prehistoric Southwestern Pueblo Pantheon. American Anthropologist.1937.Vol. 39:644-646.

Hawley’s purpose in this article is to inform the reader about the Kokopelli, a figure with a hunched back that is usually portrayed as playing a flute. Their heads appear to symbolize the bodies of fish. The modern Kokopelli are represented without the flute, but the ancient Kokopelli are represented with flutes. Why is this so?

Located in New Mexico, the Kokopelli figures were used by Pueblo Indians. The colored mural drawings can be dated, as pre-Spanish, but they have no real connection to the modern Pueblo religion. Aside from their heads looking like fish, black feathers are located on their heads, white and black fragmented circles on the sides of the head, they are dressed in buckskin leggings, and the male genitalia are always exposed. The exposed genitalia are a symbol of fertility.

According to Kidder in the article, northern Pueblo flute players were associated with the hunt. Obviously, the flute acts as a trance to lure in the prey. Were the Kokopelli symbols of deities? It is unknown because little is known about the religion of the prehistoric Southwest.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
CHRISTOPHER J. SCHIMMECK University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Hawley, Florence M. Pueblo Social Organization as a Lead to Pueblo History. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:504-522.

This article suggests that social organization and linguistics are key elements in uncovering the diverse history of modern Southwestern Pueblo groups. Hawley is surprised at “how many anthropologists not specializing in studies of modern Southwestern Pueblos still consider them all to be characterized by the group of traits collected in the later 1800s by early students of the Western Pueblos” (p.504). She explains the research of Parsons, Eggan, and Strong, noting key aspects of their studies that are supportive of her thesis. Hawley suggests that “physical anthropology and linguistic grouping and the correlation of these with detailed studies of Pueblo social organization” might help in reconstructing Pueblo prehistory (p.506). She notes that this correlation presents a history of modern Pueblos different from those proposed by either Strong or Parsons. In order to support her theory Hawley describes the linguistic grouping and the fundamental social organization of each Eastern and Western Pueblo group. In conclusion Hawley explains the key elements of Eastern and Western Pueblo culture that distinguish the two main groups and further explains variations within these groups. The information yielded from these comparisons leads Hawley to the conclusion that “the ancestors of the Eastern Pueblos may have been Plains groups who came into the Rio Grande and adjoining districts in several migrations” (p.521). Hawley goes on to suggest that “peoples of other stocks or of other divisions of these stocks likewise may have comprised a part of the prehistoric Southwestern population but eventually died out altogether or were absorbed” (p.521).

CLARITY RANKING: 3
MATTHEW C. GRIFFIN University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Herskovits, Melville. The Significance of the Study of Acculturation for Anthropology.American Anthropologist. 1937 Vol.39:259-

Melville Herskovits begins his article with a discussion of the two of the most influential schools of thought in anthropology at the time – the Boasnians and the British structural functionalists – and their disagreement over the role of history in ethnography. The Boasnian’s interest in historical reconstruction and cultural relativism often came into conflict with the British school’s relatively ahistorical approach to the study of social and political structures of a culture. Herskovits argues that the study of acculturation could potentially bridge the divide between these two schools of thought by looking at both “cultural dynamics and the importance of cultures as an historical continuum” (261). In support of his case, he gives a number of examples of how the research could be tailored to suit the particular interests of an anthropologist. At one point, he highlights the possibilities of studying the effects of acculturation on the psychology of different cultures in an attempt to lure in the culture and personality school.

At the time the article was written, there was a tendency within the discipline to study what was considered “pure” culture, or to at least “salvage” the cultural traditions of groups whose traditional ways of life were quickly changing. Herskovits argues that rather than avoid confronting the changes that occur through culture contact, anthropologists should proactively research it. He points to the study of Mexican cultures and his own research on peasant culture in Haiti as examples of studies of acculturation, but does not go into much ethnographic detail. He briefly explains that it is possible to trace the African ancestry of Haitians through colonial records and decipher how “the continued contact between French and Africans resulted in a centuries-long consolidation of traditions” (263).

A fair warning: if one is looking for an introduction to acculturation, this article is not a good starting place. It is situated in the debates current in anthropology at the time, and without a background in the history of anthropological theory, it is sometimes difficult to follow Herskovits’ references. For example, throughout the article, he hints at how the study of acculturation fit into the debate over “applied anthropology” (which, at this time, more often than not referred to the how ethnography could be useful to colonial governments) but does not provide any context about the issue. Herskovits is clearly writing for an insider.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
RACHEL BREUNLIN University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Kennard, E.A. Hopi Reactions To Death. American Anthropologist. 1937 Vol. 35:491-496.

E. A. Kennard evaluates the Hopi concepts of predetermination and individual will as they relate to death. His analysis includes three distinct reactions to death, all centering upon the strength or power of will. The reactions to death vary, depending upon the circumstance. Old age is seen as a natural progression to death, the aged reaching the end of their road and dying. The death of the young is more difficult, but the Hopi response is to get beyond it and not dwell on it. Unexplainable deaths of those who are then labeled “qovi’sa” are seen as the will of the person to cause pain among his/her people and thus is reacted to with anger. All of these reactions follow the Hopi beliefs that one can will their own death, or without sufficient strength to cope with difficult circumstances, one may die from a lack of will to live. Reactions also point to ways in which strength can be deteriorated among the Hopi. This weakening of will can be brought about by focusing on the future or the dead rather than on the present and the living, or by having an angry (mean) heart.

All of these agents to death are evidenced in the discourse of the Hopi. They are encouraged to live happy, strong lives so they may travel to the end of their road. The internal discourse of the Hopi also serves the purpose of perpetuating their belief systems about death and individual will. Kennard gives evidence of this in a conversation between a father and his son. The father advises his son to be happy, not mean, in order to have “a peaceful (ho’pi) life”.

Kennard relies on Hopi ceremonies, folklore, and Hopi narratives about death and individual will to illustrate his findings. Hopi ceremonies incorporate a spirit of the dead. In every ceremony “a hole is opened in the floor of the kiva to represent the place of emergence and to provide means of communication with the underworld” . The communication with the underworld serves an important purpose in validating Hopi beliefs. Kennard notes that many tales exist in Hopi folklore of people who travel to the underworld “by magical means” and return with a message. These messages warn the living not to dwell on the dead and not to have angry hearts. They encourage the Hopi people to live and be strong. Kennard’s conclusion, then, is that the Hopi reactions to death are part of a socialization process that is validated in their rituals, mythology, and discourse.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
NICOLE TAYLOR University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Kennard, E.A. Hopi Reactions to Death. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol.13:491-496.

The Hopi have their own culture in which they view life as something that is predetermined in important aspects, in which happenings from past to future has been known from the beginning of time. All things such as happiness, long life, and health that are desired are not seen as separate in themselves but as interconnected into an “essential whole”.

In rites, the Hopi believe that the spirits of the dead are involved. They can be present in the form of clouds, or simply of those living in the underworld. The twelve-month calendar is divided into halves, repeating the six winter months in the summer. Therefore, a meeting or ceremony held to acknowledge one would counter one sphere of life held in the corresponding month in the opposite sphere. At the end of any rite a de-charming must be performed, otherwise the contact between the living and the dead will not be broken. Also, the Hopi are quite unwilling to speak of the dead outside of the rites. Kennard presents a psychological reason for this, stating it is “related to ideas concerning the role of will in human life”. When the will of the people is collectively concentrated, it is more powerful as a whole; but when there is even one who in his heart is not wholly good, the effectiveness of the collective will is destroyed.

Unanimity of will is important not only in collective aspects, but personal as well although they do hold as much significance. Will can be directed towards gaining happiness or long life; aside from this unanimity, the individual must be without any mental conflict, or anything mentally bothersome. Those who have a type of mental conflict usually end up dreaming of the underworld- visiting in their own mind- where they experience death but always come back to life.

Any person who maintains strength in his will can obtain what he desires. Chance and accident are not even thought of as viable explanations when something that is desired makes its way to the living world; Kennard sees these as three views toward dying. For example, when someone is sick, a cure can always be found. The explanation for death is that the person did not have strong enough will and therefore passed on. However, this does not explain why younger people die. This explained by the idea that the young person was capable of adjusting to a new or tough situation. The examination of will can also affect life even when death does not take place- like when a woman has a miscarriage. Interpretations of will can be easy to learn about when the people are still alive and can tell of their experiences, but one cannot find out if a person can actually will themselves to die- since they are not alive to tell anyone if they succeeded.

CLARITY: 1
MEGAN KROL Indiana University (Anya Peterson Royce)

Kidder, V. A. Samuel James Guernsey. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:135-136.

V. A. Kidder’s obituary of Samuel James Guernsey (1868-1936) provides us with a short biography of an important early American archeologist and museum curator. Originally an artist, Guernsey was trained in archeology by F. W. Putman and C. C. Willoughby at the Peabody Museum of Harvard University, where he stayed throughout his career to eventually become its curator in 1928.

Guernsey combined his training in the social sciences and art in his work at the Peabody. Kidder praises Guernsey for the models he created for exhibits at the museum. They were “marked by meticulous accuracy of detail, delicacy of craftsmanship, and beauty” (p. 136). Towards the end of his life, he used these skills to found Guernsey and Putman, a firm that produced models for various institutions.

In addition to his work at the Peabody, according to Kidder, Guernesy made important contributions in the field of archeology. Over seventeen years of fieldwork, he conducted many excavations and explorations in Arizona that provided valuable information about the development of the Pueblo Indians. Kidder maintains that Guernesy’s research and publications moved Southwest archeology away from “a more or less haphazard hunt for museum specimens” into “a purposeful research upon the history of a culture” (p. 136).

CLARITY RANKING: 5
RACHEL BREUNLIN University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Kroeber, A. L. Athabascan Kin Term systems. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:602-608.

This article is a brief analysis of Athabascan kinship terminology. It is written as a comparative supplement to M. E. Opler’s previous work on the kinship systems of seven groups of South Athabascans. Kroeber lauds the work of Opler, but laments that Northern and Pacific Athabascan systems were not presented for comparison. It is here that Kroeber makes his contribution, relying upon the previous research of Morgan and Gifford. Athabascan groups are divided into three geographic categories. The members of the Southern Athabascan are Chiricahau, Mescalero, Western Apache, Navaho, Jicarilla, Lipan and Kiowa Apache. The California (Pacific) region includes Kato, Wailaki, Lassik, Sinkyone, Hupa and Tolowa. Northern groups are Slave Lake, Hare, Yellow Knife, Kutchkin, Tukuthe, and Carrier. Kroeber’s article is an attempt to trace the evolution of Athabascan kinship terminology and to determine its historical condition and its path of diffusion. Kroeber acknowledges that speculation plays a large part in any explanation of linguistic history, and admits that he is not an Athabascanist. However, by comparing the kinship terms of the various linguistic groups, both current and historic usage, Kroeber offers some tentative conclusions concerning the original Athabascan system of nomenclature. The original system included four grandparent terms differentiating between father’s parents and mother’s parents. Mother’s children and father’s children were represented by more than two terms, with a possible distinction for the sex of the child. Sibling categories indicated sex and relative age, resulting in four terms. Kroeber concludes that originally cross and parallel cousins were acknowledged, although the historic terminology of aunts and uncles is less clear. The suggestion of the article is that where a more complex system of nomenclature currently exists, it is a reflection of the ancestral condition rather than the independent adoption of new, more complex, kinship terminology.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
CAELI ANCONA University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Li, An-Che. Zuni: Some Observations and Queries American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:62-76.

In this article, An-Che Li explains that as a student of anthropology from China, he is interested in studying the Zuni as a way of “acquainting myself with a different culture, and to learn the field technique of American anthropology” (p. 62). Despite his lack of experience in the field, Li refutes many of the popular characterizations of the Zuni that were developed by established anthropologists at the time.

Li begins with a discussion of religious practices, disagreeing with Ruth Benedict’s and other researchers’ assertion that the Zuni lack a “spontaneous outpouring of the heart” in their religious practices. Li reminds his readers that the Christian religion has just as many prescribed services and “stereotyped prayers and songs” as the Zuni. Researchers would not and do not use them as the basis for judging Christian religious devotion. He provides examples from his own research, as well as other written material, to present a more nuanced portrayal of the religion.

Li takes a similar approach in his discussions of leadership and discipline in Zuni culture, pointing out some misconceptions of previous students of the culture and gently correcting them with his own research and insight. He reminds his readers that if researchers use their own cultural standards to evaluate another, they risk drawing the wrong conclusions. As an example, many Zuni have aspirations for leadership roles, but their “valuation of the ways and means of achieving it” is different than in the Western world. Similarly, disciplining children among the Zuni is approached in a different manner (p. 68). He notes that problems with child-rearing rise as more children are exposed to different standards and expectations imposed by Western missionaries and schools.

In the final section of the article, entitled “Man and Wife,” Li explains the relationships between men and women in Zuni society and compares them with his own Chinese culture. Unlike the Zuni’s matrifocal society, Chinese culture is patrifocal. It is notable that during his fieldwork, his opinion about the role of women in his own society changed. By observing Zuni men who were in a similar position to women in China, he discovers that the “petty troubles” he attributes to “womanish qualities” in his culture are shared by Zuni men. He concludes that “such difficulties are due to similar adjustments irrespective of sex” (p.76).

CLARITY RANKING: 5
RACHEL BREUNLIN University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Lips, Julius E. Public Opinion and Mutual Assistance Among the Montagnais-Naskapi. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:222-28.

For the Montagnais-Naskapi Indians of the Labrador Peninsula the maintenance of the peace of the community is fundamental. It is generally assumed that an unwritten constitution may be better adapted to the changing conditions of life than a written or so-called rigid constitution. In primitive communities public opinion is in effect both the constitution and the law. The strongest preventive against violation of the peace is public opinion. For instance, it is not the occasional trap thief, trespasser, or tent burner, but the habitual peace breaker, the constant trouble maker, who is punished by the community with expulsion. But once the community acts, he is outlawed and abandoned to starvation. Its principle effect is the prevention of legal infractions. It is preventive rather than punitive.

In case of illness, accident, or famine, the Indian sets up signs calling for help. It is a signal system understood by every Indian. There are two different kinds of signal posts: one signifies illness or accident the other hunger and starvation. Both can be combined, since hunger and illness often occur simultaneously. The sign post is shaped differently if the sign indicates illness or accident. Both signs are put up if the person or his family seeking aid is not only hungry but also ill. Aid arrives in time as a rule. Sometimes the helper may not be prepared for the emergency. In any event he will use the signpost as a signal to inform the caller for aid that he has seen the sign and that he is willing to bring help. It may happen that the helper arrives after the suffering individual or family has died. In that case he makes an appropriate marking on the signpost, a death message. If a person doesn’t go and refuses to assist, or, if a case should become known where an Indian maliciously disregarded a signal erected in extreme need, he would likewise be disregarded in care of his own need.

The enforcement of law in earlier cultures was not in the form of positive acts but in the threat of passive conduct. It is erroneous to contend that, in cased where a law is not enforced by positive rules and the “systematic application of the force of politically organized society”, it cannot be considered a law. Public opinion enforces by negative and passive means the positive act of the individual. In any event the fear of retaliation is sufficiently strong to compel observance of the legal norms within the community.

CLARITY RANKING: 2
LYNETTE GOUGH University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Nimuendaju, Curt and Lowie, Robert. The Dual Organizations of the Ramko’kamekra (Canella) of Northern Brazil. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39 (4):565-582

Nimuendaju and Lowie’s article on the Ramko’kamekra of Northern Brazil is divided into two parts. The first is ethnography and the second is a comparison of their finding to other works from this geographical region. The ethnography describes the social structure of the Ramko’kamekra, from the physical set up of the village to the organization of lineage and the “moieties.” Moiety is defined as a halving of a social group. Nimuendaju and Lowie provide information about the physical arrangement of the village and its relation to moiety groups. Diagrams, charts and maps are used to help the reader to understand the various patterns of the Ramko’kamekra people’s family and social structures.

The comparative notes are focused on refuting H. J. Spinden’s Ancient Civilizations of Mexico and Central America, in which it is suggested that “no clear case of kinship class has been reported south of the area of the United States” (p.186). The authors use data they have collected on the Canella and Bororo peoples to compare to Hopi-Crow kinship patterns, as well as those of the Trobrianders. The article further suggests that the South American groups Nimuendaju and Lowie observed, while following established patterns of kinship, sometimes do not follow any existing patterns at all. Nimuendaju and Lowie argue that the presence of similar moiety patterns in the South American region are hardly a coincidence and compare the Ramko’kamekra history to that of the North American Choctaw and Pueblo groups.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
KRISTIN DRAGON University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Nishioka, Hideo [Schenck, W. Egbert, trans]. An Outline of Theories Concerning the Prehistoric People of Japan. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:23-33.

The basic point of Nishioka’s article is to provide a basic outline of the current theories of the prehistoric people of Japan. Schenck, the translator, states that Nishioka makes no attempt at evaluating the presented theories of the prehistoric people of Japan. No effort is made to validate any of the authors or research cited by Nishioka. It is further assumed that the reader is already familiar with all foreign authors listed.

The evidence indicates that the views expressed previously to 1877 were pure speculation based on superstition. Post 1912, fieldwork was done and data collected. But due to the lack of official approval, “this is not a topic for free speculation in Japan,” and thus there has been very little published work on the subject.

There are two lines of speculation regarding the origin of the Japanese. The first includes theories suggesting the prehistoric people were not Japanese, while the second suggests that they are Japanese. There are four headings in the first group: the Koropokguru theory, the Ainu theory; the Ainu-Japanese confronting theory; and the eclectic theory. Each of these theories is briefly explained and the foremost proponent of each is discussed. At the end of the piece, a summary graphically charts the theories in two categories: origins deduced from the classic literature (mythology), and those based on physical anthropological and archaeological data.

CLARITY RANKING: 2
KRISTAN DRAGON University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Opler, M. E. Apache Data Concerning the Relation of Kinship Terminology to Social Classification. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:201-212.

In this article, M. E. Opler disputes a statement made by A. R. Radcliffe-Brown that a “fairly close correlation” exists between kinship terminology and what Radcliffe-Brown terms “social classification” (p.201). Radcliffe-Brown used Opler’s previous field studies of the Apache to make his argument. Opler, in turn, uses the same material to point out the discrepancies in Radcliffe-Brown’s argument.

Opler centers his discussion on three examples that directly confront and dispute the relationship between kinship terminology and social classification. Opler used three different relationships that existed in the Apache tribes (cross/parallel cousins, the mother’s sister, and the grand and great grandparent) to identify and exemplify the differentiation between kinship terminology and “social classification.” In doing this, Opler hoped to convey to the reader that different rationalizations may exist for a particular usage of kinship or terminology classifications and that both usages are valid and functional.

Opler’s final point in this article is to help the reader to understand the flaws in Radcliffe-Brown’s statement. He impresses upon the reader that under Radcliffe-Brown’s argument, “when the social classification of kin can not correlate to terminological classification, a functional inconsistency between the social system and the classification exists” (p.210). This reinforces Opler’s own position and argument.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
ANITA K ENGLISH University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Opler, M. E. Apache Data Concerning the Relationship of Kinship Terminology to Social Classification. American Anthropologist, 1937. Vol. 39 (2): 201-212.

A. R. Radcliffe-Brown hypothesized that there is a direct correlation between the societal naming of a kinship role (i.e.- aunt, uncle, cousin, sibling etc) in Apache society and the way in which that individual functions, is received, or impacts others. In this article, Opler attempts to illustrate that kinship terminology and social classification do not exclusively or completely coincide in the Apache culture, and that there may even be “grave discrepancies between kinship terminology and… ‘social classification’” (201). He clearly states that while at times a name can be indicative of the functionality of the individual, terminology is not the only means by which prescribed behavioral patterns can be conveyed. Opler uses such examples as myth, beliefs, stories, and instruction as alternative manners in which these familial relationships can be determined.

Opler arrives at his argument by refuting A. R. Radcliffe-Brown’s theory that there is a direct correlation between terminology and behavioral patterns. Opler uses his own fieldwork and “data drawn from comparative ethnological studies of Apache tribes” (201) to arrive at his conclusions. He compares terminology and function between such tribes as the Mescalero, Jicarilla, Chiricahua, Lipan, and White Mountain Apache. Specifically, Opler looks at the relationships of opposite-sex cousins, mothers and their sisters, and grandparents and grandchildren.

Opler effectively presents his argument by the systematic evaluation of these separate relationships and the terminology used in different tribes. He points out that while the behavioral patterns remain the same across the borders of the groups, the system of naming changes. Opler points out a major mistake in the hypothesis of Radcliffe-Brown, the assumption that an individual’s role is singular in fashion and cannot be multi-faceted. In Radcliffe-Brown’s opinion, when two functionally similar roles are represented by two differing terms, one must be in error, a “functional inconsistency”. What Opler attempts to show is that there is no one way that adequately describes a kinship role and that while terms may vary, they may each illustrate one aspect of that role. “Since terminological classification is obviously an arbitrary and limited procedure, we have no reason to believe that it can or does adequately symbolize complex relationships”(209).

CLARITY: 4
JULIA BUCK Indiana Uniiversity (Anya Peterson Royce)

Provinse, John H. Cooperative Ricefield Cultivation among the Siang Dyaks of Central Borneo. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:77-102.

Provinse examines nonirrigated ricefield cultivation in the jungles of Indonesia, focusing primarily on the cooperative nature of the work involved in this type of “hill” cultivation. He draws on observations made during three months of research among the Siang people of central Borneo. Claiming that there is an insufficient amount of ethnographic information with regards to primitive labor, Provinse describes the details of the work employed in the ricefields and reveals the organization of labor. He presents this data in an attempt to reveal the practice of social reciprocity, and he claims that “self interest” is the primary motivating factor in the organization of labor and production.

Provinse begins by explaining the processes involved in selecting a site, clearing the land of trees and brush, burning, planting, controlling pests, harvesting the rice, and storing the rice. He then gives general descriptions of a typical Siang village, their family structure, their customs and beliefs, their diet, and the weapons and tools which they utilize for hunting and agriculture. Provinse indicates that each family has its own ricefield, which may be jointly cultivated with other families on the same plot.

After providing a basic overview of ricefield cultivation and the culture of the Dyaks, Provinse further investigates the tedious process of clearing the jungle for planting. He also analyses the different levels of social cooperation involved in this and other stages of “hill” cultivation. Due to the intense work involved in removing trees and brush from plots, families typically employ the help of others. Provinse shows that this cooperation usually comes in one of two ways. The “hando” system of labor exchange is an informal agreement between a group of men. All of the men involved in this arrangement work together in a single ricefield each day and rotate daily to another field. This rotation continues until the ricefield of each man involved in the pact is completed. The second system of labor exchange identified by Provinse is known as “haweh,” which he labels “feast” labor. When a man announces that he will have “haweh” at his field, all willing Dyaks are invited to offer their help. In return for their assistance, the owner of the ricefield provides a feast that typically includes pig or chicken and the native rice wine. Provinse then examines the different roles of men, women, and children in the cultivation process.

Provinse contrasts his work to that of Bronislaw Malinowski and Raymond Firth by stressing the limited influence of “external social and religious forces,” such as magic, taboos, and omens, in motivating the Siang Dyaks to cooperate socially. As evidence of this, Provinse points to the Dyaks’ rational approach to the activities of cultivation, and he cites the simplicity of their cooperative ricefield cultivation. As a means of providing “objective information on primitive economic activity,” the appendix contains a record of the daily activities of seven individuals.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
PATRICK DAVID NORMAN University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Ray, Verne, F. The Bluejay Character in the Plateau Spirit Dance. American Anthropologist. 1937 Vol. 39:593-601.

Verne Ray wrote this article to demonstrate the importance of the guardian spirit concept of the Salishan groups of the Plateau area of Washington, Idaho and Western Montana. He believed this concept to be greater here significance than anywhere else in America.

The Salish developed the guardian spirit as a religious complex based on the world’s beginning. The guardian spirit was ever present as a source of energy to be drawn upon when needed. The bluejay dance was a religious event of emotional content, which occurred during the winter months. Everyone with a guardian spirit participated.

The Bluejay represented the guardian spirit. He was a tribal member who had special powers such as being able to locate lost objects. He went through rigorous conditioning by wearing only a breechcloth during the winter months of the Bluejay dance. The Bluejays avoided humans, became a scavenger of food, and mimicked the behavior of the blue-jay bird. He was able to accomplish his metamorphous as the Bluejay character independently but required the intervention of humans to go through a symbolic death and become human again. The function of the Bluejay was to act as a sentry during the dance and to ensure that everyone conformed to the proper rules of conduct. During the dance, he perched on the rafters ready to swoop down upon anyone found breaking the rules. There were tribal variations of the Bluejay’s activities and rituals, but the main duty of acting as the guardian spirit remained the same.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
JOYCE ASKEW University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Rodnick, David. Political Structure and Status Among the Assiniboine Indians. American Anthropologist. 1937 Vol. 39:408-416

In this article David Rodnick describes the Assiniboine Plains Tribe as “interesting for their crystallized, yet loose, formal political structure” and notes that the band was the basic political unite of Assiniboine life. Bands, for the most part, operated independently from other bands. Each band had their own chiefs and made their own decisions; if there was more than one chief, one was picked to be the leader. The status of each chief could be changed at anytime if deemed necessary by the council. The size of each band was also continuously fluctuating; as each person came of age and married. Married couples, if they were from different bands, could choose to join either band.

Often, several bands would come together, especially for important meetings. Usually, when bands came together, the councils from each band formed a circle of tipis, with each tipi representing one of the bands. Although each band was represented in the circle, they would still only govern themselves. The only exception to this was Crazy Bear. Crazy Bear was appointed tribal Chief of the Assiniboine Plains Tribe by the United States, but he usually only governed a few bands at a time.

Rodnick also describes the internal make-up of each band. He talks about the stations of the chiefs and how leadership and age affects the perception of those in each band. Success was achieved and perceived in several different ways. Age, war, hunting and wealth were all factors. It should also be noted that women had no rank or social status whatsoever. Only their relatives might hold women of some value.

CLARITY RANKING: 2
JENNIFER TRIGUEROS University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Senter, Donovan and Florence Hawley. Hopi and Navajo Child Burials. America Anthropologist. 1937 Vol. 39:131-134.

Senter and Hawley compare and contrast the details of one Hopi and two Navajo children’s burials that were unearthed by an enthusiast. Determining current burial practices and comparing their findings to prehistoric Southwestern practices enabled anthropologists to gauge the rate of acculturation. Since burial customs in general are less deeply rooted in a culture they are more vulnerable to change.

In Hopi burial ceremonies, preparations of the body are done by a family member and do not differ greatly by gender or age. Personal possessions of the deceased are commonly used. Symbolism is a major factor displayed by the adornment of the body with feathers. The burial bundle was protected from the environment by sheepskin. Sticks protrude from the gravesites, which act as ladders for the soul. The child’s spirit is believed to be reborn in another child of the opposite sex. Funeral offerings are in the form of food, clothes, and toys left for the dead to be used on the death journey. The Hopi see their dead as animate clouds called katcinas.

The fear of their dead is so great that Navajo will sometimes ask white men to aid them with the task. Remnants of food and clothing tomb offerings were found at the gravesite. White grave robbers in search of the precious stones and jewelry have been known to raid Navajo burial tombs. Where the Hopi adorn the body with feathers, the Navajo do so with stones. The bodies were found in pine boxes engraved with a cross, evidence of Christian influence. Materials once owned by the deceased were found in the grave. The Hopi infant was found nude while the older Navajo children were clothed.

Funerary customs are not deeply rooted in culture and the little change from prehistoric custom suggests that the Hopi and Navajo are the last to be affected by outside influence.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
ERICA L. CLARK University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Hawley, Florence and Donovan Senter. Hopi and Navajo Child Burials. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39: 131-134

In this article Donovan Senter and Florence Hawley discuss the similarities between Hopi and Navajo child burials and how both cultures have sustained their cultural traditions while also being influenced by white culture contact.

The Hopi and Navajo child burial information was based on data from archaeological excavations in the American southwest. The Hopi and Navajo both fear the dead so avoid contact with the bodies as much as possible. However both revere the dead and believe that the spirit will need earthly possessions in the future.

The Hopi infant was buried on the cliffs of a mesa near Mishongnovi. The grave was covered with stones. A stick protruded from the grave which would be used by the soul as a ladder, to depart westward. The Hopi child’s face was covered with a piece of fine cotton cloth symbolizing the spirit’s future existence as a cloud. The child was wearing moccasins and had prayer plumes placed on various parts of its body. Nearby, archaeologists found a range of earthly possessions: modern glass beads, an empty Post Toasties box, and rubber baby pants.

The Navajo children studied were buried in separate crevices on a cliff in New Mexico. With one child, there was a large stone shaped as a cross at the head of the grave. Both children were dressed in traditional Navajo clothing. One child was found with a box of Crackerjacks and a tin cup. The other child was found with a stick of red and white striped candy and a spoon.

The accounts of the Hopi and Navajo burials show how both cultures have kept many of their traditional beliefs and customs. Yet at the same time both have been influenced by American commercialism. The Navajo have also been influenced by Christianity.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
LYNN SHAULL Indiana University (Anya Peterson Royce)

Smeaton, Winifred. Tattooing among the Arabs of Iraq. American Anthropologists 1937 39:53-61

In this article, Winifred Smeaton examines tattoos among the Arabs of Iraq. Smeaton’s focus is on the purpose of the tattooing, and the names given to the various designs. It does not go into the history or origin of tattooing, but rather discusses the custom as it existed in 1933-35, when the fieldwork was conducted in Iraq.

Smeaton obtained information through observation and questions. She also collected information from conversation with, and demonstrations given by, professional tattoo artists. She has found that the tattoos is divided into two categories: those applied for magic or therapeutic reasons, and those applied as decoration. According to Smeaton, magic or therapeutic tattoos are simple or crude in design. They are placed on the area of pain or injury for curative purposes. There are three types of magic or therapeutic tattoos. The first is used to cure skin infections, pain, colds, and most commonly, sprains. The second type of magical tattooing is applied with the intention of bringing about some desired effect. For example, inducing pregnancy, protecting against death, and charms for gaining love fall into this group. A dot on the end of a child’s nose is the most general form of magic tattoo encountered by Smeaton. This practice is done with hopes of guarding the child against death. The third type of magical tattooing is a form of sympathetic magic. This type is accompanied by having someone read the Qur’an while the tattoo is being applied. However, Smeaton notes that she only came across a few women who practice this. An example of this type is a tattoo of three dots shaped in a triangle placed on the palm of a woman’s right hand to insure the keeping of her husbands’ love. A similar design, placed on the left hand of a woman, would mean that the woman no longer wanted her husband’s devotion.

The vast majority of tattoos are for ornamental purposes. The face, hands, arms, feet, back, thigh, chest and abdomen are all areas for tattooing. Through sketches Smeaton gives examples of such tattoos in her article. According to Smeaton, the majority of women are tattooed. She theorizes that tattooing may be a rite of passage for women. Most young girls are tattooed before marriage or puberty. However, it is noted that some men get tattooed for curative and ornamental reasons. All such tattoos are blue, and are geometrical designs or stylized representations of natural objects. Smeaton claims that different patterns also depend on the part of the body being tattooed. She supports this assertion with a full account of different designs, and the name and purposes for each. In conclusion, Smeaton’s article contributes to the knowledge of tattoos and tattooing in southwestern Asia.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
JAZMIN LIZARRAGA University Of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Tax, Sol. The Municipos of the Midwestern Highlands of Guatemala. American Anthropologist. 1937 Vol. 39:423-444.

In this article, Sol Tax explains that social and cultural units in Guatemala are divided by municipos, which are territorial administrative boundaries. Tax states therefore that any study of ethnology done in Guatemala must first take into account the unique cultures of differing municipos. He shows that the municipos are often separated by geographical features such as mountains, which make them seem isolated, although they actually are not.

Tax then goes on to describe different types of municipos, some having pueblos (town-centers) where there are no permanent Indian residents which are called “vacant-town” municipos. In this case, the Indian lives in the country and occasionally makes a trip to the town to attend church, the court-house, or the market-place. The other extreme is called a “town-nucleus”, in which practically all residents live in the town. In this case, the men leave the town early in the morning to work on farms in the surrounding country, so that the visible population of the town during the day is mainly comprised of women. The final type of municipo is a combination of the above two, where about half of the residents live in town, and half in the country.

Tax then explains the distinction between an Indian and a ladrino through language and clothing style, and then states that the majority of ladrinos (Spanish-speakers) are town-dwellers in the Midwestern Highlands. Tax states that although contiguous municipos differ from one another less than those separated geographically, they nonetheless differ through blood, tradtion, history, language, culture, and costume. The residents disapprove of marriage outside of the municipo, and they feel as foreigners when visiting a neighbors municipo. The names given to the inhabitants reflect the municipo from which they come (one from Quezaltenango is a Quezalteco), and this identification lasts even for two or three generations when a member has left the homeland. Tax states that the municipos differ from each other in brith and baptismal customs, forms of marriage and courtship, family organization and kinship systems, and religious beliefs.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
REBECCA ERATH University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Titiev, Mischa. A Hopi Salt Expedition. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:244-258.

The article is a detailed account describing a 1912 salt expedition made by the author and three Hopi men: a chief, a “common” man, and a “novice.” All three were initiates of the Hopi Wuwutcim ceremony. Titiev recounts the ritual preparations for the journey and the rites, offerings, and omens encompassed in the salt expedition. He asserts that the main reason for a ceremonial qualification is that the journey is especially dangerous because the salt deposit is located near the home of the dead. There is frequent use of prayer-feathers and corn meal, along with careful attention to ceremonial rites, to ensure a good journey and a safe return. Most rites center directly or indirectly around the Little War Twins, the “patron deities in charge of salt,” to whom the Hopi attribute the creation of the Salt Canyon and the rock shrines leading to it. Many of the rites are of a sexual nature, especially those performed at the shrine of the Salt Woman. In the sacred shrine of Masau’u (the god of death), omens are observed and interpreted by the men with relevance to the next season’s crop output and the length of the coming winter. The journey includes a visit to the Kiva, “the original sipapu through which mankind emerged from the underworld.” At the end of the article, Titiev includes the Hopi myth, “The Flight of The War Twins,” as an explanation of the shrines and rites connected with the importance of salt in Hopi culture. While the article is chiefly a narrative of the observed specifics of the expedition, Titiev offers interpretations and explanations in the footnotes of the meaning and significance of the ritual acts performed along the way.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
Jane B. Stubbs University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Todd, Wingate T. The Scientific Influence of Sir Grafton Elliot Smith. American Anthropologist. 1937 Vol. 39:523-527.

In this article, Wingate Todd summarizes the many contributions that Sir Grafton Elliot Smith made to science in the field of mammalian ecology, neurology, physical anthropology and cultural anthropology. Elliot Smith demonstrated early in his career his willingness to explore unknown territory with an unprejudiced mind and an instinct to solve the problems that he encountered. Smith’s career was a progressive path of scientific endeavor leading him from the study of the primitive Platypus “smell-brain” and culminating in the study of the Royal Mummies of Egypt.

As a young doctor, Elliot Smith was appointed to catalogue the great collection of mammalian brains at the Museum of the Royal Collage of Surgeons in London. This enabled him to continue the pursuit of his interest in the parasympathetic nervous system, an interest he held throughout his career. After this work, Elliot Smith obtained the position of Professor of Anatomy in the Government Medical School located in Cairo, Egypt. Here he had hundreds of brains to dissect, which resulted in his clarification of the human brain structure as the basis of the study of function.

While Smith was in Cairo, he was assigned the task of examining ancient Egyptians buried in the area later to be submerged in the construction of the Assuan Dam. He was able to determine the physical character of these people extending over four millennia. This stimulated his curiosity as to the possibility of the spread of ancient society by the trade routes of Egypt as a means of diffusion of culture, a theme he later developed. He was granted the privilege of examining the Royal Mummies, for which unwrapping was banned. To accomplish this task, he used x-ray to elucidate the mummies and was the first person to use x-ray in this manner.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
JOYCE ASKEW University of New Orleans (David Beriss).

Voegelin, Erminie W. Suicide in Northeastern California. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:445-456.

The main concern of this article is to look for evidence of the practice of suicide in Native American Indian tribes of the northwest coast. Voeglin considers the work of two other anthropologists, Isabel T. Kelly and Cora Du Bois, as well as his own ethnographic data. According to Voeglin, of the sixteen tribes where informants were interviewed, half acknowledged the practice of suicide among their people.

Four of the five case studies presented by Voeglin come from the McCloud Wintu and all contain the same scenario. In each, a Wintu man gambles away his money and comes home to an angry wife who refuses to feed him. He then goes off to drown himself in a sacred pool of water. Voeglin questions the four cases, suggesting that they may all be variations of the same myth, rather than actual cases of suicide.

Voegelin considers whether or not suicide predates contact with white men. It appears that some informants from the different tribes support this possibility, but others deny the practice of suicide before contact. In his conclusions, Veogelin outlines three patterns for suicide. The first pattern is based on information regarding the five McCloud Wintu cases. The second pattern involves the Klamath and Modoc tribes, and their notion of romantic love and despair, which sometimes leads to suicide. The third pattern focuses on the similarities of the Atsugwi, Achomawi, and Surprise Valley Paiute tribes, all of which present details that suicide was committed by eating wild parsnip. Although suicide was frowned upon in these groups, the victims were given the same burial as they would have received for a natural death.

CLARITY RANKING: 2
VALARY D. LYONS University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Voegelin, Erminie. Suicide in Northeastern California. The American Anthropologist, 1937 Vol.39:445-456.

In this article Voegelin discusses suicide among several groups in northeastern California. The author feels that there is a pattern of suicide among the Wintu in that area. He retells stories and myths that were told to him by the people that he studied there.

I believe the author’s intent is to prove that suicide is a problem in northeastern California. He attempts to do this through his five “cases” and a small summary of analysis at the end including views of particular people that he surveyed.

The article is very poorly written. The author’s focus is not clear. He does not even explain, to an appropriate level, who the people are that he is studying. He introduces the paper in a short two paragraphs and then immediately jumps into regurgitating stories and myths, which were told to him about suicide. The problem is that the stories (or myths) sound very much like one-time affairs. They also seem to not even prove ‘suicide’ but merely death by accident or unsure cause of death. Several times in the paper he says, “There is no mention of … committing suicide”. This appears to defeat the purpose of the entire paper. Even if the stories, which he refers to as ‘myth’ in several cases, were true they are only exemplary of five cases and not a representation of the community at large.

The author does mention that, “Suicide was usually motivated either through jealousy or quarreling” but this does not address how often it really happened although it does help to explain the few cases that were discussed.

CLARITY RANKING: 1.7
JENNIE WOOLF Indiana University (Anya Royce)

Whorf, B.L. The Origin of Aztec TL. American Anthropologist. 1937 Vol.39:265-274.

By studying the linguistics of Uto-Aztecan, the author of this article is able to determine that the phoneme “tl” and “t” of the Aztec language is derived from the Uto-Aztecan original “t”. There are of course, as with learning any language, rules and exceptions, which are explained and defended. It is also important to point out that there are language differences between the Uto-Aztecan and the Aztec, that one must understand before being able to understand Aztec “tl” and “t”. This article provides an in-depth explanation of the differences between the languages. It also provides an in-depth view of the factors proving the birth of Aztec “tl” and “t”. All of this leads the author to conclude that “tl” is distinct to a Aztec/Central Nahuatl dialect, and was not found in Uto-Aztecan speech.

This article is not for the linguistically weak. It is complex and at times confusing. I think it only fair to recommend this article to those with some sort of a linguistic background, otherwise the reader will lose interest or simply not understand the true meaning that was meant to be conveyed.

CLARITY RANKING: 2
LISA JORDAN University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Whorf, B.L. The Origin of Aztec TL. American Anthropologist, 1937 Vol. 39: 265-274.

In The Origin of Aztec TL, B.L. Whorf argues for the existence of a rule in the Aztec language where the tl sound is derived from the sound that t makes in certain situations. This is based on previous research by J. Aldon Mason’s 1923, A Preliminary Sketch of the Yaqui Language.

Whorf examined many different Uto-Aztecan languages to determine that, with only three exceptions, the tl sound is used under one set of rules while the t sound is used with the complementary and alternative sets (Whorf, 1937). The author’s evidence for this thesis can be traced to his extensive knowledge of Aztec linguistics and the existence of special “ultra-short vowels” which may alter the use of the tl or t sound in many Uto-Aztecan languages. The author was also able to utilize his knowledge of the current state of the Aztec language in his observation that the ta sound is still present as a stem in numerous words in the dictionary (Whorf, 1937).

Whorf’s article presents a great wealth of information, but at a level that left the reader skimming the paper for any significant events or ideas. Whorf invented his own symbol for the tl sound which complicated his already complicated thesis. Whorf does not offer enough evidence in a cogent manner to support his thesis. Anyone without a strong linguistics background or specific knowledge of the Uto-Aztecan language family will have difficulty with the article.

CLARITY: 1
BRONSON HAYES Indiana University (Anya Royce)

Wieschhoff, Heinz. Names and Naming Customs Among the Mashona in Southern Rhodesia. American Anthropologist. 1937. Vol. 39: 497-503.

In this article, Heinz Wieschhoff addressed the naming customs of six culturally similar tribes of the Mashona group in southeast Africa. With few exceptions, two names were used during the life of a Mashona. One name was given at birth by the father or wet nurse. The second name was given later by the father or mother, or self-chosen at 12-14 years of age. The author delineated naming customs and name meanings for each tribe he studied, including the Basuma, Wahungwe, Babudja, Wataware, Barue, and Wawesa.

In summarizing the data, Weischhoff revealed a pattern. First names were most likely connected to circumstances of birth, such as rain-storm, blindness, or feebleness. He noted that first names expressed a prevailing spirit of ill fate and possible death: “the child is thin,” “it will not live very long,” or “the child will die” (p. 503). Second names revealed individual behavior and were not always flattering: “he sits down wherever he goes,” “friends do not like him,” “he talks too much,” or “she is selfish” (p. 503). Weischhoff concluded that the meanings of the chosen names indicated an understanding of acceptable social norms among the Mashona people.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
PEGGY VERRET University of New Orleans (David Beriss)

Wyman, Leland C. and William C. Boyd. Blood Group Determinations of Prehistoric American Indians. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol. 39:583-592.

Wyman and Boyd address three problems present in American anthropology with regard to blood groups: the antiquity of the blood groups present in the New World, whether prehistoric or the result of historic migration from the Old World; the relations between the Basket Maker people and the later Pueblo people, and how these peoples relate to other peripheral groups; and the relation of ancient Peruvian peoples to ancient North American groups and to the groups presently living in South America.

Wyman and Boyd briefly describe their methods and materials of research, which focus on the chemically stable substances called agglutinogens A and B. Agglutinogens can be found in tissue as well as the blood. The samples tested were ground tissue, usually muscle, taken from 226 human burials that dated back to various periods of prehistory. Of the specimens, 133 were from Peru, 59 were from the southwestern United States, and 34 were from Alaska or the Aleutians.

In their results, Wyman and Boyd claim to have definitely shown the presence of the antigens A and B in prehistoric American Indians, and they present the specific findings for the sample material of each location. The authors question whether the mutation rates in humans could be high enough to account for this presence of these antigens. Wyman and Boyd propose, instead, that human populations, lacking one or more of the blood groups, have appeared intermittently through accidental isolation from an original population that possessed all three factors A, B, and O.

Wyman and Boyd assert that the presence of antigens A and B in prehistoric American Indian tissue suggests the antiquity of these genes in human evolution, and thus, does not support the theory that these genes were the result of recent mutations. The authors also offer tentative hypotheses suggesting relations between the Lovelock Cave group and the pre-Pueblo people, distinguishing the Basket Maker group from the Pueblo people, suggesting a more recent origin for the presence of agglutinogen A among the Navaho, confirming the antiquity of the agglutinogen B in South America, and relating the ancient South Americans to the Big Bend Cave people and other groups.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
PATRICK DAVID NORMAN University of New Orleans (Jeffrey David Ehrenreich)

Wyman, Leland C. and Boyd, William C. Blood Group Determinations of Prehistoric American Indians. American Anthropologist 1937 Vol.39:583-592

The issue addressed by this article in American Anthropologist is whether or not it was the European immigration into the Americas that introduced the A and B blood alleles. This determination would give strong evidence as to the timeframe that these alleles appeared in the human genome. If A and B alleles appear in Prehistoric American Indian Populations then the alleles appeared before or during the great migrations. The authors tested the remains of North American and of Peruvian Indians. The samples of each population were not large enough to determine a population majority of one blood type or another. The overall results for the North American Indians reflected that the A allele was present in the first and third of the four major migrations. The B allele was present in the Peruvian Indians as well as A to a much lesser degree. There were even two AB individuals in their sample.

The process used to determine the presence of A or B alleles was relatively straightforward. Blood type is determined by the presence or absence of two proteins (A and B). When neither type is present the blood type is O. When just A is present the blood type is A, when just B the blood type is B. When both are present the blood type is AB. When proteins are bonded with anti-proteins the result is a neutral compound. So in order to determine the blood type of the ancient samples Anti-A and Anti-B proteins were added. These would bond to the corresponding proteins in the sample if they exited in the sample. Later A and B proteins were added to the sample as well. Any Anti-proteins still remaining would then bond to these new proteins. Thus if there was any A or B proteins left unbonded, it meant that the corresponding Anti-protein had bonded with that protein type in the sample. So whichever proteins were unbonded at the end were of the same type as the sample. If neither were left – the sample was O. If just A was left then the subject was A. If just B was left then the subject was B. If both proteins were left unbonded then the sample was AB.

The process is reliable for determining whether or not the A or B proteins existed in prehistoric Indians. Even though the sample was too small to accurately describe the distribution of the blood proteins in the Indian populations, it does show that the alleles existed before humans arrived in the Americas. Since both the A and the B protein are present in Peru’s prehistoric societies the mutation existed before their migration. The A allele present in the North American migrations prove it existed at the time of the first migration, however, it is interesting to note that the second and fourth migrations seem to be predominantly O. This could raise the possibility that although the alleles existed, it may have been in minor numbers and only in certain populations.

CLARITY: 5
MEGHAN HANSON Indiana University (Anya Royce)

Zolotarev, Alexander M. The Bear Festival Of The Olcha. American Anthropologist. 1937 Vol. 39:113-130.

Alexander M. Zolotarev examines the bear festival among the Olcha tribe. The Olcha reside around the lower part of the Amur River and are divided into “patrilineal exogamic clans representing social as well as religious units”. The Olcha’s Bear Festival exists as a commemoration of their dead kinsmen. The festival relies on the use of bears to be the panjau or “the embodiment of the deceased soul”. Zolotarev describes the process of the festival among the Valzu clan of the Olcha and contrasts differences between the Valzu and other clans.

Zolotarev details the length of the festival, which varies, but usually averages about nine days and does not exceed fifteen to seventeen days. The preparation for and the ritualistic nature of the activities during these days are examined. During the first seven days, preparation of the bear takes place and families arrive to partake in the process and the festival. The Eighth day is seen as the beginning of feasting or (toje) and the great amount of food consumed by the guests bestows honor upon the host. The ninth day begins with the beating of the bear with sticks as a cleansing, “this ceremony is called docpocambau”. The bear is then taken to a cleansed area and shot with arrows and killed. The tenth through fourteenth days the guests slowly depart and the bear is boiled, this is referred to as a time of tranquility. The fifteenth day the bear is eaten and shared among various clans and family members. The sixteenth day the remaining bear is eaten by the host family and clan.

The Olcha refer to the bear festival as playing with the bear and their reasons for this are explored by Zolotarev. Many of the Olcha partake in the festival because it has been done since ancient times yet others give reasons as follows, “(1) for meat; (2) as a reason for the relatives to come together; (3) the clan who often “play with bear” has good fortune in hunting and fishing; (4) the bear is fed and brought up as panja in commemorations of a dead person”. The Olcha also believe that the bear is a forest man who has altered his appearance. The forest men are believed to exist and live like humans, only with powers over the animals and the ability to transform themselves, mostly into bears. This myth centers on the concept of reincarnation and the fruition of good tidings among those who partake in the ritual. The Olcha are thus driven by tradition, mythology, kinship ties, and the power found in ritual to sustain the bear festival.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
NICOLE TAYLOR University of New Orleans (David Beriss)