American Anthropologist 1976

Collins, Henry B. Matthew Williams Stirling. American Anthropologist December, 1976. Vol.78(4): 886-888.

Matthew W. Stirling is perhaps most well known for his impact on Mexican archaeology. His work lead to the discovery of the Oleic civilization, now believed to be one of the oldest civilizations in Mesoamerica. This discovery stemmed from his skepticism surrounding the view that Maya civilizations were the oldest in Mesoamerica. This led him to investigate marginal areas to the Maya centers. He participated in some of the early digs in Tres Zapotes and La Venta. This knowledge is now well accepted and documented, in fact it is often taken for granted.

Although this is the area in which he had the greatest impact and for which he will be most remembered it was not all he did. Over the span of his life he was the Director of the Bureau of American Ethnology, he served as Research Associate of the Smithsonian Institution, and was an active member of the National Geographic Society’s Committee on Research and Exploration. When working for the BAE he brought in several people to work under him, including Julian Steward, George M. Foster, William C. Sturtevant, Homer G. Barnett and Henry B. Collins who is the man responsible for the writing of this obituary. Although associated with museums for much of his life, he truly enjoyed travel and fieldwork. He did work in South Dakota, Peru, Dutch New Guinea, and Florida among other places. Another significant effort, which he was involved in, was the Ethnographic Board, which was the Smithsonian’s only organized effort to make its scientific research available to the military agencies during World War II.

He is survived by his wife, Marion, his brother, Gene, his son, Matthew, his daughter, Ariana and a granddaughter.

CLARITY: 4
DIANA R. FEREE California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark W. Allen)

Collins, Henry B. Matthew Williams Stirling 1896-1975. American Anthropologist December, 1976 78(4):886-888.

Earning an M.A. degree from George Washington University, Matthew Stirling began his career on the Smithsonian staff, first as Aide and then as Assistant Curator in the Division of Ethnology. From 1925-1927, he led the Stirling New Guinea Expedition (sponsored by the Smithsonian), gathering Negrito and Pauan material, which now form one of the National Museum’s most valuable collections. He then served from 1927 until 1958 as Chief of the Bureau of American Ethnology (BAE), during which he made the greatest impact of his career, working with Olmec sites (the Olmec were an early civilization of the Gulf Coast of Mexico, predating the Maya by approximately 1000 years) and contributing significantly to Mexican archeology. Also, under his leadership, the BAE produced an extraordinary amount of scholarly work and employed some of the best of the field, including Julian Steward, Duncan Strong, along with many others. In 1958, he received the title of Research Assistant from the Smithsonian and until his death, actively participated on the National Geographic Society’s Committee on Research and Exploration.

CLARITY 3
KATHERINE STRONG Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin and Joe Heyman)

Colson, Elizabeth. Culture and Progress. American Anthropologist June, 1976 Vol.78(2):261-271

The author of this article is Elizabeth Colson of the University of California, Berkeley. In her article, Colson addresses current issues and problems within the field of anthropology, especially in social anthropology and ethnography. She acknowledges the fact that our world as we know it is continually growing and the “primitive” societies we once studied will soon be a member of a world society of large industrial buildings and imperialisms. Colson makes the point that no culture is “primitive”, that no such group is totally isolated from the world and that everyone is somehow affected by its events. The author focuses on cultures within the United States, particularly Native Americans. As a young ethnographer in the early stages of functionalism, Colson found herself frustrated when asking Native American informants about a way of life that had ended decades or more prior due to invasion of territories by the United States. The heart of her article discusses the idea of change outside of the United States. Colson believes as anthropologists, we view change as “upsetting a delicate machine” in terms of other societies. “Options are bad for other people upon whom we do ethnography but very good for ourselves who use the teaching of social anthropology to free ourselves, and our peers, from constraining tradition.” Colson feels that we cannot fully understand other societies as anthropologists, unless we ourselves look at our own culture in which we live. Colson’s article in the American Anthropologist was taken from a lecture she conducted in San Francisco in 1975. From the article, it is plain to see that Colson is very concerned with the history and the future of anthropology. Surrounded by her colleagues, Colson is delivering a message of self-reflection for her listeners. She is stressing the importance of admitting our flaws and learning from our mistakes, in order to ensure a bright future for anthropology.

CLARITY: 4
THOMAS MELZER California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Colson, Elizabeth. Culture and Progress, Distinguished Lecture 1975. American Anthropologist June 1976 Vol. 78 (2): 261-271.

This is article is verbatim of the lecture given by Colson at the 74th annual meeting of the American Anthropologist Association. Being a social anthropologist herself, she focuses on the future of the field, with a special emphasis on ethnographic research. Colson predicts the greatest advances in the field will come from anthropologists studying their own (Western) institutions. She firmly believes through such study culture will come to be viewed as a means to an end, instead of a bounded entity.

The key in ethnographic research is the understanding that people act according to what they view as their best interests. Colson also discusses the paradox of anthropology. On the one hand, anthropology is dedicated to defending the right of peoples to live the way they chose. On the other, this right is often denied to people, as they are encouraged to assimilate Western ideals. She feels this problem can be overcome by constantly comparing peoples’ actions as they apply to the major institutions of society.

Colson feels social anthropology is best viewed not as a study of other cultures, but as the study of how culture influences the actions of those within the culture. Advances are made as we apply these insights in new settings. By doing so, an anthropologist can determine new problems within cultures and which situations stimulate action.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
TAMARA OJANEN Michigan Technological University (Josiah Heyman, Susan Martin)

Crumley, Carole L. Toward a Locational Definition of State Systems of Settlement.American Anthropologist March, 1976 Vol. 78 (1): 59-71.

Carole Crumley’s paper applies Central Place concepts to the formation of the state, and critiques the Central Place Theory. Crumley introduces this article by suggesting that urbanism is not the only option necessary for state formation. Crumley’s article explores her proposed spatial and functional definitions of urbanism, and concepts such as the functional center, and functional lattice. She looks at these definitions in an attempt to explain the emergence of the state systems of settlement.

Many individuals have tried to explain the emergence of the state using the Central Place Theory (CPT). Crumley spends a great deal of time in this article, explaining what CPT is, and the methodological and theoretical problems that exist within it. Crumley states in her article that she has decided to use her definitions to explain state emergence, instead of using CPT, due to the fact that CPT and its “universal applicability is in doubt.” Crumley defines the functional center as “any spot/place/site/location which serves a function or functions not equally available elsewhere.” She also defines the functional lattice as a “spatial expression of relationships (economic, social, religious, or administrative) between functional centers.” With Crumley’s definitions taken into consideration, she suggests that the emergence of a settlement system of state-level societies can be distinguished by spatial relationships of a population.

Crumley’s article gives the reader a sense of how difficult a task it is to explain the emergence of a state system of settlement.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
VANESSA RAMOS California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Crumley, Carole L. Toward a Locational Definition of State Systems of Settlement.American Anthropologist March, 1976 78(1):59-73.

In her article, “Toward a Locational Definition of State Systems of Settlement”, Carole Crumley discusses various approaches for analyzing the rise of the state and understanding patterns of urban change. Drawing examples from fields as wide-ranging as geography and economics, she attempts to transfer their definitions and frameworks for use in archaeology. One of her main topics involves Central Place Theory (CPT), which asserts that cities, as well as other urban areas, tend to form out of business considerations, particularly the advantage of having a market in a centralized location. Crumley feels that, while CPT has limited uses, it can be handy for large-scale analyzes, particularly in distinguishing between state and non-state societies. Another point she deals with involves the utility of “spatial and functional” views of settlements, involving networks between urban areas and between urban and rural areas, instead of viewing settlements only by looking at population and area.

Crumley also forms a few definitions of her own, with the aim of aiding further discussion. These include synchorism, achorism, and epichoritic. Synchorism refers to the presence of rural populations that are associated with state level settlements. Achorism means the absence of such rural populations. Finally, epichoritic denotes areas of settlement with centers that house only a few specialists but are associated with a large rural population.

While these terms are not applied in any functional manner and this article does not formulate a specific model or assert any “truths” concerning urban growth or the rise of the state, it does seek to peek discussion in this area and the author hopes to motivate the formation of a dynamic model that can be used to explain change occurring in both state and non-state societies.

CLARITY RANKING: 1
KATHERINE STRONG Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin and Joe Heyman)

Divale, William Tulio and Harris, Marvin Population, Warfare and the Male Supremacist Complex American Anthropologist March, 1976 Vol. 78(1): 521-538

The authors, William Tulio Divale and Marvin Harris, set out in this paper to demonstrate that the male supremacist complex in band and village sociocultural systems is primarily caused by warfare. They also set out to explain that the perpetuation of this warfare and its interaction with selective female infanticide is an attempt to answer the need to control population growth. For the authors, the main focus is on the unbalance distribution of sex-linked practices and beliefs. As they state, “The primary ethnological evidence for the existence of a pervasive institutionalized complex of male supremacy consists of asymmetrical frequencies of sex-linked practices and beliefs which on logical grounds alone either ought not to be sex-linked or ought to occur with equal frequency in their male-centered and female-centered forms. Certain aspects of this complex are well known; others are less well known or have hitherto been viewed as isolated phenomena.” The ethnological evidenced referred to is garnered from an extensive collection of ethnographic data of the Ethnographic Atlas by Murdock, published in 1967, of which the relevant aspects are distilled and included in multiple tables in this paper. Murdock’s data includes ethnographic data in the form of trait lists for 1,170 societies from around the world. The authors’ theory rests on the concept that the most effective form of population control is the reduction of the percentage of sexually active fertile females within the population. Selective female infanticide and neglect of female infants fills this role more effectively than does abortion for two reasons: “(1) male fetuses could be brought to term and selectively reared to adulthood; (2) the death of babies was less costly in an emotional, structural, and economic sense, than the death of mothers.” Divale’s and Harris’s analysis of the extensive data collected seem to support this, which is in direct opposition to the use of the Freudian Oedipus complex as single variable for explaining sex roles and intergenerational conflict.

Nowhere in this paper do the authors assume to know why or how warfare first came about. In fact, they clearly state that they do not need to know this.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
HUNTER N. KELLEY California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Divale, William Tulio and Harris, Marvin. Population, Warfare, and the Male Supremacist Complex. American Anthropologist 1976 Vol. 78(3):521-538

In their essay, William Tulio Divale and Marvin Harris present a cross-cultural study on the institutional belief of male superiority in band and village societies. They argue that the “male supremacist complex,” the societal authority based on men, results and is perpetuated by warfare and the killing of female infants, which stems from the cultural preference for men. They argue that warfare is its most important cause. This system is self-reinforcing. War functions to perpetrate the male supremacy complex and selective female infanticide, which promotes warfare in the first place. Divale and Harris examined 561 local band and village populations from 112 societies.

They attest that this “preferential male” mentality, that exists in some band and village societies, is nurtured through postmarital residence with the husband’s family or tribe, which leads to male dominated decision-making and access and control over resources. This leads to a situation that favors the status of men over women.

In order for the “male supremacist” ideology to survive, there needs to be a constant collection of men in a society who are ready to participate in war. This is made possible through the process of “selective female infanticide”. Evidence for this theory is shown by the ratio disproportion of males to females in these societies. There is a preference for males because their physical stature is more conducive to aggression and warfare that is prevalent in pre-industrial societies. A male monopoly over “the weapons of warfare” concludes that it is men who exclusively participate in war activities and competitive sports. There are higher levels of the disproportion in societies where there are higher levels of warfare than in societies where warfare is not as common. Warfare and selective female infanticide are used as mechanisms for population control because there are no effective, less costly alternatives.

CLARITY RATING: 3
ANNA K. SWARTZ Michigan Technological University (Josiah Heyman and Susan Martin)

Fenton, William N. Marian E. White (1921-1975) American Anthropologist December, 1976 Vol. 78(4):891-892

Marian E. White passed away on 31 October 1975 after a prolonged illness. As a devout supporter of cultural rights, she leaves behind a tremendous legacy in the form of cultural resource management (CRM). She received a Graduate Student Honorarium from the New York State Museum and Science Service in 1954 and achieved her Ph.D. in 1958 from Michigan. Her dissertation, which was published in 1961, delimited a problem set forth by the author (Fenton) in 1940, “by establishing a chronology for the sites of the Niagara Frontier, linking them to ethnic entities, and establishing and explaining the drift of peoples in the region.” She later did more work on this that became the model for ethno historical methodology. She served two years as a research associate at the Rochester Museum of Arts and Sciences then more time at the Buffalo Museum of Science. The University of Buffalo was the center of her professional career where she trained many excellent archeologists, such as William Engelbrecht. As an indication of her quality as a professional, Fenton writes, “Anyone who heard her conduct a seminar at an Iroquois Research Conference, first at Red House, and afterward at Rensselaerville, sensed that she was a powerful teacher. Complicate phenomena took on clarity, and speculation was minimal.”

White’s position as a pioneer in the field of CRM came about in large part due to her work with the Seneca Nation. While many were frustrated by the U.S. Corps of Army Engineers when attempting to block a dam from being built in the area, she simply set about the work of recovering archaeological remains and identifying and studying burials in the affected area with her students and young Indian people. She never allowed the bureaucracy to awe her and generally controlled it instead. To facilitate the process of highway salvage archaeology that was hampered by the State, she started the New York State Archaeological Council.

She was appointed to the Eastern States Archaeological Federation from 1966 to 1968 and was elected to the Nominations Committee of the American Anthropological Association in 1975, but she passed away before the announcement of the results. The Cornplanter Medal for Iroquois Research of the Cayuga County Historical Society was awarded in her name following her death.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
HUNTER N. KELLEY California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Fenton, William N. Marian E. White American Anthropologist December, 1976 Vol. 78(4): 891-892

Highly regarded for her humane ability to make the complex understandable, Marian E. White is remembered for being a “powerful teacher” of anthropology.

In 1958, White received her Ph.D. from the University of Michigan. While at Michigan, she conducted her graduate work with such notables as James B. Griffin and Leslie A. White. Her professional career got started at the University of Buffalo, where with impressive rapidity, she moved from lecturer to full professor.

Before participating in graduate academia, she served in World War II. She is also well known for her activist work with the Seneca Nation. She served as a research associate of the Rochester Museum of Arts and Sciences. She is responsible for setting up the New York State Archaeological Council after growing tired of waiting for the New York State officialdom to set up an adequate program.

CLARITY 3
ANNA K. SWARTZ Michigan Technological University (Josiah Heyman and Susan Martin)

Foster, George M. Disease Etiologies in Non-Western Medical Systems. American Anthropologist 1976 Volume 78(4):773-782.

This article is an attempt to formulate a standard methodology for those studying non-Western medical systems. Foster believes the lack of method in studying these systems is a result of the lack of communication between the ethnoscientists concerned with medical systems and their inability to leave behind their Western influences. This absence of cohesion resulted in voluminous amounts of data describing these systems without offering any analysis or interpretation. Foster points to one clear example

of the lack of communication between ethnoscientists as the absence of standardized terminology. Originally these systems were described as “primitive systems,” which soon took on a derogatory meaning. Then the term “folk medicine” was utilized, causing confusion since this was often how Western medicine was described. Then a variety of descriptive titles came about, such as “agrarian,” or “rural medicine.” Foster’s solution was to define two categories under which almost all non-Western medical systems would fit. These were personalistic and naturalistic systems.

Foster believed understanding etiology was the key to understanding all other aspects of non-Western medical systems. This becomes the basis for his distinctions between personalistic and naturalistic systems. In a personalistic system an active agent causes sickness. This agent can be human, non human or supernatural and can create the illness for a number of reasons. The naturalistic systems rely on balance of natural forces and body elements. The naturalistic system believes the person who becomes ill caused his or her own illness by upsetting this harmony. Since all other aspects of the medical system revolve around the belief of what causes illness, he goes through other categories such as religion, magic, prevention and responsibility, and how each fit into these two systems.

The evidence Foster used is presented systematically, clearing showing the differences between personalistic and naturalistic systems in each section. He offers evidence from a wide range of cultures to support his ideas. However, he admits the classification of all the world’s medical systems into only two categories is not possible. Instead he offers these two as a starting point to understanding and developing more classifications of the world’s medical systems.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
MICHELLE STOUT California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Foster, George M. Disease Etiologies in Non-Western Medical Systems. American Anthropologist December, 1976 Vol. 78 (4): 773-782.

Foster begins the article by criticizing the lack of cross-cultural comparison done by anthropologists in the study of Non-Western medical systems. He argues that through such comparison, it becomes apparent that disease etiology, or causation, is the defining principal in these medical systems. He further states that there are two principal etiologies in Non-Western medical systems: personalistic and naturalistic.

Personalistic systems have religious backgrounds. Witches, spirits, or other deities are seen as the cause of disease. There is little room for chance, as disease is seen as a punishment of the afflicted. The sick person is literally the victim of these agents. Personalistic systems also apply this etiology to all misfortune suffered in life. Diagnosis is the primary concern of the etiology. There are two levels of curing in such systems. The first level, or the efficient cause, is concerned with the diagnoses of who or what caused the disease. Often shamans or witch doctors determine the cause through trance or other divine techniques. The immediate cause is the concern of the second level, and involves the application of the remedy.

Naturalistic systems, on the other hand, are based on an equilibrium model: disease is attributed to natural forces throwing off the equilibrium of the body. These systems stem from the legacies of antiquity and the Far East. Chance plays a much larger role than the actions of the person. While personalistic systems associate all misfortune with their etiology, the naturalistic etiology is disease specific. Naturalistic systems have a single level of curing, in which healers determine both the cause and the remedy.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
TAMARA OJANEN Michigan Technological University (Josiah Heyman, Susan Martin)

Graham, Ian. John Eric Sidney Thompson. American Anthropologist June, 1976 Vol.78(2): 317- 320.

Sir Eric Thompson is most well known as an eminent Mayanist. His start in this field was unusual. He joined the Navy at 19 and shortly there after was shipped to the front lines of World War I. He spent some time in the French trenches and he was wounded at Vimy Ridge, but not yet released. When the war ended he went to Argentina and spent four years working on ranch, but the work did not suit him. So he went back to London and went to school. He taught himself the essentials of the Maya calendar and soon after graduating he was back in Mesoamerica working in the Yucatan.

This was just the beginning of his work in Mesoamerica. In his first assignment there he discovered the Macanxoc group with eight stelae. During subsequent visits he discovered Pusilha. The discovery of large monuments was only a small part of his work, Thompson tended to favor excavations that would give insights into the lives of the everyday person. He also collected data from living members of Mayan societies to gain more insight. He used all sources available to him so as to get the clearest picture. His greatest achievement however lay in the decipherment of Mayan epigraphy. Several of his books were written with a focus on this subject. He was somewhat protective of his work and thus when an opposing view was brought up, he fought against it vigorously.

Graham notes that Thompson tended to use a historical approach in his work, paying little attention to cultural evolution. Graham also speaks very highly of Thompson as a person, noting that his loss will be greatly felt in the field.

CLARITY: 4
DIANA R. FEREE California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark W. Allen)

Graham, Ian John Eric Sidney Thompson 1898-1975 American Anthropologist June, 1976 Vol. 78(2): 317-320

Recognized as one of the prominent Mayanist, Thompson went to Winchester College and went to Cambridge for this B.A. in archaeology. He obtained an honorary Sc. D. in 1925 He was strong into being self taught and learned the Mayan calendar so he could be accepted into Carnegie Institution’s Chichen Itza Project.

Thompson’s greatest achievements were in epigraphy. He was one of the forerunners in deciphering Mayan hieroglyphic writing. His personality was one of fun and spent much time in the London Scottish army and months before dying was given knighthood.

CLARITY 3
AMANDA MCMAHON Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin and Josiah Heyman)

Halliday, M.A.K. Anti-Languages. American Anthropologist 1976 Volume 78(3):570-584

Halliday looks mainly at the underworld languages of England, Poland and Calcutta, India to construct a theory that anti-language is created by the opposition of a society and its marginalized and/or ostracized which in this case are the criminal elements of society. (Students are also put into this category of anti-language users!) He states that creative word play and the need for secrecy are main reasons why anti-language is over-lexicalized and subject to constant change, but are not the reasons behind its need or creation. The tension between the two groups of society and anti-society, cause the members of the anti-society, or marginalized people, to adopt a new language for solidarity and as a way to construct their new reality. A new reality is created because a person is no longer in the boundaries of the mainstream society, but goes against and rejects the society. This could be because they are criminals who disobey the social laws, are rejected by the society itself or just subgroups, which are dissatisfied with the society and reject it based on morality, philosophy, practicality, etc. Some examples of groups rejecting a society and forming their own anti-society would be early Christians and students who often advocate rebellion. The anti-language is used to re-socialize the individuals and to maintain a strict hierarchy with rewards and punishments keeping the society unified against the ‘normative’ society. Halliday goes on to note the similarities between anti-language and literature largely seen in the abundant use of metaphor. Anti-language is also separate from dialects because it cannot be entirely codified and is a “conscious counter-reality not a subcultural variant.” Halliday’s development is a bit unorganized and repetitious but his thesis can be identified and is well-supported.

Clarity Ranking: 3
MICHAEL RAMIREZ California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Halliday, M. A. K. Anti-languages. American Anthropologist September, 1976 Vol. 78 (3): 570-584

This article describes what anti-languages are and how they are used. There are certain times and places that we hear unique forms of language which are generated by a form of anti-society. An anti-society is a society that is set up within another society as an alternative to it, a form of resistance against the society it is in. This resistance may take the form of passive symbols or even of hostility and destruction. The languages that are found in anti-societies are called anti-languages. Anti-languages serve to create and maintain social structure through conversation similar to a regular language except that the social structure it serves is a special one. In it certain elements are strongly centered and different than that of the main society, thus giving the anti-language a particular character where metaphorical modes of expression are the standard. Phonological (speech sounds), lexicogrammatical (grammar relationships), and semantic (relationship of the meaning of language) levels of language are all ways of expressing the anti-language. Halliday argues that the anti-languages also serve as a vehicle of resocialization. They arise when the alternative reality is a counter reality, set up in opposition to some established norm.

Halliday uses several examples and charts to help illustrate his article. He frequently refers to a documentary by Bhaktiprasad Mallik which is an account of an anti-society in modern Calcutta that developed its own language. Three distinct groups use forms of anti-languages: criminals, near-criminals, and students of Calcutta. Halliday concludes the article by stating that the study of anti-languages offers further insights into the relation between language and social structure. It also helps us to understand social contexts within societies.

CLARITY: 4
NICOLE CARLSON Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin, Josiah Heyman)

Harmon, William. T.S. Eliot, Anthropologist and Primitive. American Anthropologist December, 1976 Vol.78(4):797-811.

This article by William Harmon of the University of North Carolina is a critique of the work and life of T.S. Eliot. Eliot was quite familiar with anthropology and social science and used his knowledge in poems, plays, and works of literary and social criticism. By his 40’s, T.S. Eliot had a reputation as a poet and respected literary critic. He committed himself to work on ideas of the primitive, a “psychological philosophy of history”, and modern art. Eliot struggled with ideas of religion and society and much of his work reflects his commitment as a devout Anglo-Catholic. William Harmon structures the article on Eliot’s background of anthropology and how his familiarity with it affected his creative work.

Upon review of Eliot’s early graduate studies, much of interest lied in primitive religion and ritual. He was very influenced by the works of Durkheim and Levy-Bruhl. The most popular and interesting literary work of Eliot was his review of C.J. Webb’s attack on Durkheim and Levy-Bruhl. Much of Eliot’s interest in religion and society is exemplified in his deep interest in the work of W.H.R. Rivers and his association of Melanesian religion and ritual. Eliot was also influenced by the work of Freud and Totem and Taboo. Like Freud, Eliot believed the imaginative layering of the human mind joins certain people in myth and literature. Eliot believed that by studying primitive man, we would better understand civilized man, so therefore by studying primitive art and poetry, we can possibly gain a better understanding of civilized art and poetry.

Although this article is often difficult to follow, it displays how multiple disciplines can be combined to gain different and multiple interpretations of data. William Harmon displays his own postmodern views by emphasizing Eliot’s creative and academic background and how they both influenced his work in anthropology.

CLARITY: 2
THOMAS MELZER California Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Harmon, William. T.S. Eliot, Anthropologist and Primitive. American Anthropologist December, 1976 Vol.78(4):797-811

In his article, William Harmon investigates the ways in which material from the social sciences functions in the literature arena. As a spokesperson of this phenomenon, Harmon presents T.S Eliot as an example. Eliot was not an anthropologist, but he was particularly well-acquainted with the ideas and theories of anthropology from his studies at Harvard. This article explores how Eliot took his knowledge of culture and incorporated it into his literary work.

Harmon’s argument centers around the fact that ideas from anthropology played a large role in the construction of Eliot’s complex poetry. In presenting examples and excerpts from various pieces of Eliot’s works, Harmon provides concrete examples of harmony, uniformity, and organization that are characteristic of Eliot’s poetry. Harmon argues that these themes are also associated with the “primitive” and provides the speculation that Eliot may have included elements of the primitive in his work as a representation of something simpler, whole, and more human.

CLARITY RATING: 4
ANNA K. SWARTZ Michigan Technological University (Josiah Heyman and Susan Martin)

Harwood, Frances. Myth, Memory, and the Oral Tradition: Cicero in the Trobriands. American Anthropologist 1976 Vol. 78:783-796.

Harwood argues that spatial locations serve three main functions in the mythology of nonliterate societies. He makes this argument in the framework of a synthesis of Malinowski’s functional approach and Levi-Strauss’ cognitive approach. During classical times Cicero and Greek rhetoricians pointed out that memory can best be facilitated by associating the fact that one wishes to remember with a familiar locality. The first function of spatial locations in mythology is as mnemonic devices. The Trobrianders use the specific locations as cues, reminding them of the associated stories. Each myth relates to a specific location or series of locations, much in the same way that Cicero thought mnemonic devices could facilitate memory. Malinowski thought that myth served as a charter for social institutions and that each myth is, clearly, demarcated from one another, which meant that each social institution is independent of one another. The second function of mythological spatial locations is that they provide a structural marker between myths and hence social institutions. This means that one myth or institution could be modified or changed and would not affect the legitimacy and integrity of other myths/institutions. The third function is this built-in stabilizing mechanism that provided the Trobrianders with the ability to change or modify myths and institutions without, completely, destroying other social institutions and the culture as a whole.

Harwood gives three examples to support his idea that spatial locations serve the three functions in mythology that he describes. The strongest of these examples is in Zuni mythology, of which he provides an excerpt. The excerpt used is a list of place names encountered on a mythological journey that lack elaboration and detail, completely. However, to the Zuni tangential stories are associated with each of these places. When listened to by fully encultured Zuni this list comes alive and the associated stories are cued by the place names. Harwood also argues that extreme creatures, both grotesque and beautiful, appear in mythology to make a more dramatic impact on the human mind. This also facilitates better remembrance of the myths.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
PHILLIP UNDERWOOD California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Harwood, Frances. Myth, Memory, and the Oral Tradition: Cicero in the Trobriands. American Anthropologist. December 1976. Volume 78(4): 783-796

Within non-literate societies, myths can be linked with certain geographical places. Harwood argues that myths serve three functions: as a memory device to help recall lengthy detailed stories, as a teaching device to tell moral tales in detail and the restructuring of myths as a means to keep social order.

The author attempts to solve two dilemmas he came upon while plotting a map involving locations of Trobriand myths. The first is the precise geographical names, which are mentioned throughout Trobriand mythology. The second stems from trying to synthesize Malinowski’s social functional approach to myths with Levi-Strauss’ cognitive approach to myths. The article describes various techniques used by oral traditions to find mythical events and give them meaning. The constant use of geographical locations found in myths of non-literate societies serves to recall oral knowledge and traditions and to function as a structural marker.

Many have grappled with the functions myths play in non-literate societies. These include those who think that memory and learning are the prime dimensions of importance (Malinowski and Cicero) and those who think that social articulation and the theory of how everything is connected (Levi-Strauss and Plato).

Harwood looks at both theories systematically and finds that they support the geographic importance of a myth as a memory device and learning tool but offers no examples of how people use myth alteration to cope with cultural change.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
DOREEN BLAKER Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin, Josiah Heyman)

Hinsley, Curtis M, Jr. and Holm, Bill. A Cannibal in the National Museum. American Anthropologist. 1976 (45) 306-316

Hinsley and Holm discovered photographs of Franz Boas posing for an exhibit in the U. S. National Museum. They proceed to analyze the early career of a great mind in anthropology. Nearly ten years after Boas’ arrival in the United States in 1886 he was a geographical editor of science and taught for three years at Clark University. After resigning with eight other faculty, Boas worked as a chief assistant at the University of Chicago. Boas eventually resigned from this job. He was unemployed for a year and a half and had just lost his son, Hedwig.

After this low point, Boas accepted appointments at Columbia University and at the American Museum. Unfortunately, while he was working at the museum, the appointment fell through and the job he had be promised was given to William Holmes and Boas was offered a lesser position. Boas was deeply insulted, but was forced to take the job out of necessity.

Boas’ chief from Chicago, Frederic Putnam was a good friend who had accepted positions at the American Museum of Natural History and Cambridge. Putnam promised Boas that he would find work for him. Putnam urged Boas to give his all when he went to study the Kwakiutl in the American Northwest.

He was desperate for work and various offers of assistance continued to fall by the wayside. By 1895, Putnam offered Boas a position at the American museum and a position at Columbia. Soon, afterwards, he was offered another job from Washington, but ultimately chose to stay in New York. This piece illustrates that sometimes, even the most important figures in a field can nevertheless have trouble starting their careers.

CLARITY RANKING:5
BROOKE BURNS California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Hinsley, Curtis M, Jr. and Holm, Bill. A Cannibal in the National Museum: The Career of Franz Boas in America. American Anthropologist June, 1976 Vol.78 (2): 306-316

Hinsley and Holm give a detailed depiction of Franz Boas’ early career in the United States describing the hardships that Boas faced, not only with the anthropological associations of America but also with the difficulties he had finding a job, personal problems, and the death of his son. The authors begin the article with visuals and descriptions of Boas posing for photographs that he did while in collaboration with the U.S. National Museum (Smithsonian Institution), one of his first jobs in the United States. The photographs, which were first published in this article, are a sharp reminder of Boas’ constant collaboration with the limited number of anthropological institutions in America and the personal difficulties he faced trying to establish himself as a professional.

After years of moving to different jobs and places around the country, Boas found a permanent geographical and institutional home at Columbia University and the American Museum of Natural History in New York. In 1897, Boas began the long journey of organizing anthropology in America, after much hard work and employment at several universities. During this time Boas emphasized the printing and preserving of texts for future investigation within the subjects of anthropology. Disputes with the Smithsonian Institution led to questioning the property rights over these manuscripts thus leading to the diminishing of the Bureau of American Ethnology’s role in anthropology as the source of major activity.

In 1902, Boas lost his strong allies in the capital and his influence was diminishing due to new leaders within the Bureau, leading to a distinct anti-Boasian attitude that increasingly developed and was a reality by 1920.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
NICOLE CARLSON Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin, Josiah Heyman)

Hurlbert, Beverley McElligott. Status and Exchange in the Profession of Anthropology.American Anthropologist 1976, vol. 78(2): 272-283

This article addresses the issue of status and exchange among eighty anthropology university departments in the United States and Canada. In particular the author Beverly McElligott Hurlbert is concerned with the rate of doctorates exchanged between the different universities. She ranks the schools as either elite or non-elite institution. This information is useful in analyzing the distribution of anthropologist throughout academia.

Hurlbert uses statistical data to compile useful and interesting information. This article contains four charts in which conclusions are drawn upon in order to clarify the system of reciprocity that universities live by. The author uses the data to state the obvious and expose exactly where all of the universities stand in relation to one another.

The author accurately shows how the system works. The statistical data is based on the hiring practices of each university. The rate at which they exchanged Ph.D. recipients uncovers what schools are the elite and the rank of all of the other non-elite’s’ accordingly. This information is useful to those who are interested in pursuing a career in anthropological academia.

CLARITY RATING: 3
ETHAN JACKSON California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Hurlbert, Beverly McElligott. Status and Exchange in the Profession of Anthropology. American Anthropologist June, 1976 Vol. 78 (2): 272-283.

This article focuses on the hiring practices of Ph.D. granting anthropology departments. At the heart of the argument is whether graduates of certain schools are favored in hiring. This is generally considered to be the case. In her analysis, Hurlbert compares the findings of two methods of study on the subject (tables of statistics are included).

The opinion-survey method was carried out by the American Council of Education in 1970. Professionals were asked to rank the status of departments in their discipline based of quality of facilities and quality of program on a 1-3 scale. The findings indicate three classes of schools, hierarchically structured, with a small elite class on top.

Hurlbert uses the exchange method as a basis for comparison. The exchange method attributes higher status to a giver if the receiver cannot offer an equal in return. A computer program ranked the schools as givers, receivers, or reciprocals in regard to their exchange with other schools. Her findings all but mirrored those of the A.C.E. study. The statistics show that elites hire within their rank, and the others hire from higher-ranking schools, again indicating a hierarchical structure.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
TAMARA OJANEN Michigan Technological University (Josiah Heyman, Susan Martin)

Lancaster, C.S. Women, Horticulture, and Society in Sub-Saharan Africa. American Anthropologist September, 1976 Vol.78(3):539-564.

In this article, Lancaster discusses the topic of matriliny and the status of women in horticultural societies. In most subsistence cultures, women play a very limited role in society. Their attention is focused on family care and meeting the basic needs of day-to-day living. Women work to raise children, gather food, attend to all the provision inside the home and assist other family members in their chores as well. Due to these demands, most importantly child rearing, women in horticultural societies don’t have the time to focus on political roles which would give them greater prestige and power. In very rare cases, some women are recognized as “spirit familiars”, but usually most wait till old age when they don’t have the responsibilities of family chores anymore.

Lancaster distinguishes between simple and intensive horticulture societies. Simpler societies tend to be matriliny based whereas intensive cultures lean toward patriliny. The structure of simple horticulture groups is more egalitarian in gender roles. Women and men both work to subsist and population sizes stay small. Intensive horticulture societies are based on production and require extra labor. As crop yields grow, the population of a group becomes denser. Women, who once worked the land alongside men, are out competed by them now that more intense labor is needed. The organization of male labor and control of “daily economics” reaches outside the sphere of female home life and a women’s role in society lessens. Thus, in societies where horticulture is intensified and a focus is brought to productivity, patriliny replaces matriliny. These family forms are affected as means of subsistence and control intensify with denser populations. Lancaster concludes that this idea opposes 19th-century views that family patterns are automatically linked with subsistence behaviors in general.

This article counters the basic ideas of Boasian thought. Lancaster tries to find an all-encompassing view of culture structure through horticultural societies and starkly contrasts Boas’s view of Cultural Relativism. Though he opposes 19th-century evolutionists in his article, Lancaster does follow some of their basic ideas. He relies on the comparative method to discuss subsistence cultures as a whole and his point of labor and production leading to oppression is Marxist in view.

CLARITY: 3
ANGELA KUHLMANN California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Lancaster, C.S. Women, Horticulture, and Society in Sub-Saharan Africa. American Anthropologist June, 1976 78(2):539-564.

This article presents the ways women are involved in different parts of the economy in Sub-Saharan Africa. It is presented in a way to show that women have a great deal of influence and care about the economic situation because, as Lancaster cites, “Females were largely concerned with the subsistence sphere.”

The groups of people he describes and uses as reference are horticulturists. They use subsistence farming and basic trade methods to get by. They do not have intensive machinery or tools to help with their gardens. These people also tend to have a high bride wealth and trade, meaning that when a women is to get married, her family receives goods that are of high value.

Each and every group is different so no total generalizations could be made about women in Sub-Saharan Africa as a whole. However, there seem to be a few places where statements could be made that could include most societies, such as the fact that women generally did most of the intensive work in the gardens, possibly because men did not see that work as having a lot of respect. The women also were the ones to take care of the children.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
AMANDA MCMAHON Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin and Joe Heyman)

Lange, Charles H. W. W. (Nibs) Hill 1902-1974. American Anthropologist 1976 Volume 78:87-89.

The obituary written for W. W. Hill is meant to show the accomplishments and contributions Hill provided to the field of anthropology. Lange begins the obituary providing many of Hill’s professional achievements, including serving as Curator in the University of Washington Museum and Chairmanship of the New Mexico Department of Anthropology. Other achievements are Associated Curator of Ethnology at the U. S. National Museum in Washington, and Academic Director of the Navy’s V-12 College Training Program in New Mexico. Most notable, though, is his life long study of Navaho Indians, beginning with his dissertation in 1934, under the guidance of Edward Sapir. His studies of the Navaho ended with his last completed work, Navaho Material Culture, in 1971.

Lange goes on to describe the family life of Hill, portraying him as a loving husband, father and grandfather. Hill was devoted to his family, friends and students. Lange describes the ease in forging a friendship with Hill, which many of his students did and the unique and effective way that Hill taught.

The obituary concludes with an excerpt from a colleague of Hill, who speaks of him as a remarkably capable teacher and a great friend.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
MICHELLE STOUT California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Lange, Charles H. W.W. (Nibs) Hill American Anthropologist March, 1976 Vol. 78(1): 87-89

Willard William (Nibs) Hill’s influence on the study of anthropology is indeed expansive. Serving as a field assistant, both in his undergraduate and graduate career, allowed him to gain valuable experience, in addition to gaining museum experience at the University of California, Berkeley while working in the anthropological collections.

His graduate work was conducted at Yale, where he focused his interests on the Navaho Indians. He earned a doctorate from there in 1934 and based his dissertation on the agricultural and hunting methods of the Navaho Indians. He later published the book, Navaho Material Culture (1971). While at Yale, he worked alongside the notable Edward Sapir.

His career in the field took him from associate curator of the University of Washington museum to full professor of anthropology at the University of New Mexico. He was also active in the American Anthropological Association, serving as an officer.

CLARITY 3
ANNA K. SWARTZ Michigan Technological University (Josiah Heyman and Susan Martin)

Longacre, William A. Paul Sidney Martin. American Anthropologist 1976 Vol.78: 90-92

This obituary is a short biography of Paul Sidney Martin (1899-1974), the famed Southwestern archaeologist who is most famous for “Overkill Theory,” which is not mentioned here for some unknown reason. He had, initially, wanted to study Mayan archaeology, but after some problems with malaria and dysentery he was advised by his doctor not to return to Mexico. He then turned his attention to several Anasazi sites in southwestern Colorado and began his nearly 50 years of research in the American Southwest. He held several curatorial positions early on in his career and was a Lecturer at the University of Chicago for almost twenty years until his death on January 20, 1974.

Some of his most important research was done in New Mexico from 1939 to 1955, where he demonstrated that the Mogollon Culture was an earlier and separate culture from the Anasazi. When Paul began his research this was a very controversial suggestion. He later, while doing research in Vernon, Arizona, hypothesized that the pre-historic Mogollon were related to the modern Zuni of New Mexico. This was partially facilitated by National Science Foundation funding that began in the 1960 season. For more than the first half of his career Paul’s focus was, in his own words, as quoted by Longacre, on “…generalizations on patterns of behavior and on the laws of processes and change”. He was dealing with culture change even in the years when radical Boasian historical particularism dominated the profession. He truly was ahead of the discipline. During his last 20 years he was more interested in developing ways to test archaeological hypotheses. He was a very accomplished writer and as Longacre writes “a complete bibliography of Paul’s publications fills pages”. He was also president of the Society for American Archaeology in 1965-66.

This article was very easy to read and gives a good solid overall sense of who Paul Sidney Martin was and what he did in his exemplary career.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
PHILLIP UNDERWOOD California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Longacre, William A. Paul Sidney Martin (1899-1974). American Anthropologist 1976 Vol. 78(1): 90-92

Paul Martin was known for his open-minded, enthusiastic, and creative approach in the field of archaeology, which shows through the many accomplishments that he made during his career. A graduate of the University of Chicago, Martin primarily focused his work on the pre-historic southwest United States. An interest in the different cultures of that area led him to learn of the Mogollon culture, which was discovered by a colleague. The Mogollon people became his main focus as he shifted his attention from his previous research to finding a historical link between the prehistoric Mogollon and the Zuni cultures.

Throughout his career he assisted in the training of nearly 50 individuals who became professional archaeologists. Paul Martin’s contributions to the field of archaeology were recognized by several of his colleagues over the many years. Martin was elected into numerous associations including the American Anthropological Association. He also received the seventh Alfred Vincent Kidder Award in 1968 for outstanding contributions to American archaeology.

CLARITY 3
NICOLE CARLSON Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin, Josiah Heyman)

Mitchell, William P. Irrigation and Community in the Central Peruvian Highlands. March, 1976 Vol. 78 (1):25-44.

Mitchell compares the hydraulic hypothesis of Wittfogel and Steward to the communal irrigation in the Peruvian Highlands. Instead of large-scale irrigation requiring a centralized power structure, Mitchell proposes to change the independent variable in this equation from the size of the irrigation system itself to the way in which irrigation systems are organized. The extent of political power varies directly with the extent of the irrigation system and its importance to the local economy.

He tests his hypothesis in the contemporary community of Quinua, which is also the archaeological site of Huari, one of the earliest and most important empires in Peru. He hopes this will allow inferences on the probable role of irrigation in Huari development.

On the eastern slopes of Ayacucho Valley, there is a central town divided into two barrios; each falls along one of two major drainage systems reflecting the natural hydrologic situation. Each barrio has its own irrigation system and the division is important for the political, religious, and ecological organization of the community.

Temperature and moisture are controlled by the rainy and dry seasons and affect the five major ecological zones delineated by altitude. The irrigation system exploits the natural drainage patterns, however the water available is only sufficient as a supplement and not enough to irrigate a dry season crop for the entire district. Mitchell proposes that irrigation is used to extend the beginning of the growing season for crops that have longer maturation periods at higher altitudes, such as maize. It is used as supplementation for lower altitude crops.

There are formal rules for water distribution and political officials ensure distribution during the planting season, when water needs are most critical. The two barrios have different forms of irrigation control, but it is mostly by communal guarding efforts. Once a year, every family sends a worker to repair and clean the canals or pays a fine. In return everyone has access to water. Due to the hierarchy of water access throughout the year however, not everyone will get as much water as they want, and water theft becomes an issue, especially between people from different hamlets. Mitchell raises an interesting point: theft of water increases the amount of centralized control and police work, not the construction and maintenance of the irrigation system itself.

Mitchell makes several conclusions from this study. The importance of irrigation to agriculture in this and other communities is clear, especially since other ecological zones of mountain environments are similar in different areas of the world. The evidence also suggests that Wittfogel and Steward’s hypothesis is not applicable to the Central Highlands.

CLARITY RANKING: 3
LEANN MOORE California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Mitchell, William P. Irrigation and Community in the Central Peruvian Highlands. American Anthropologist 1976 Vol. 78(1): 25-44

It has frequently been assumed that large-scale irrigation itself causes centralized political control. In his article, Irrigation and Community in the Central Peruvian Highlands, William P. Mitchell’s objective is to offer a new hypothesis, one that changes the emphasis on size of the irrigation system to the way in which irrigation activities are organized. His hypothesis states that centrally regulated irrigation will lead to an increase in centrally organized political power in other areas of social life.

Mitchell presents his argument by describing the irrigation system, including the environment and setting of Quinua, a district in the central Peruvian highlands and the community under study. He also examines the different distribution principles that operate in Quinua. In the rainy season and at any time of water scarcity, political authorities are involved in the distribution of water. The rest of the time, there exists an informal system where individuals are in charge of obtaining and protecting their own water supply.

Mitchell uses this fact that water is often distributed in an informal system and water is often stolen as evidence that it is not irrigation itself that causes centralized political control within a society. The link between central control and centrally regulated social activities is made clear with the Yarqa Aspiy and Yarqa Ruway, the cleaning and ritual celebrations of the irrigation system. The importance of irrigation to the social sphere is revealed in the large role these activities play in societies. The cleaning festival has been deemed one of the most important public celebrations. The festival has a very rigid organization of ritual, in the past, it was the local political organization that was responsible for organizing the festival.

He also demonstrates that the organization of the small-system irrigation in Quinua, a district of the central Peruvian highlands, has many similarities to other systems found in other Andean communities, where irrigation represents an important part of both political life and ritual life.

CLARITY RATING: 2
ANNA K. SWARTZ Michigan Technological University (Josiah Heyman and Susan Martin)

Parker, Seymour. The Precultural Basis of the Incest Taboo: Toward a Biosocial Theory.American Anthropologist June, 1976. Vol. 78 (2):285-305.

This article explores the origins of the incest taboo, proposing a biosocial theory and explanation. The incest taboo has been the topic of debate since the early years of anthropology because of its near universality. That is, most cultures in existence have some form of incest taboo, with only a few minor and “insignificant” exceptions. The author argues that earlier explanations that rely too much on one side of the nature/nurture debate have not given enough credit to the opposing view, which tends to lead to a reductionistic explanation of this phenomenon. Asserting that previous research has relied too much on speculation and a lack of empirical evidence, the author claims that there now exists enough evidence, coming mostly by means of psychological, ethological, and human paleontological research, to reexamine the issue.

One line of research that has brought light to the debates over the origins of the nearly universal incest taboo is the study of Israel communal societies, or Kibbutz. In these societies, children of the same cohort, although not related, are reared together beginning shortly after birth. These children, who have lived as close as brothers and sisters, rarely marry another member of their cohort. This is despite any cultural restrictions or stigmatizing labels for such acts. This research lends itself to an interactionist perspective in which both biology and environment play a part in the development of incest avoidance. This is, early exposure to another child may physiologically desensitize one to that individual and thus not “turn them on.” Other lines of research come from the field of ethology, although not lending solid support.

The author continues to draw on different areas of research regarding the origins of the incest taboo and incest avoidance. He then attempts to integrate these different lines of research and suggests some possible causal mechanisms for the incest taboo. Finally, he produces a model of early man’s social life and the origins of this phenomenon.

This article highlights the multiple factors that must be considered in proposing explanations for human behavior. It is not as clear-cut as biology or environment, but rather it appears to be a complex interaction between the two which continually feedback into the equation.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
BRIAN ARMENTA California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Parker, Seymour. The Precultural Basis of the Incest Taboo: Toward a Biosocial Theory.American Anthropologist June, 1976 78(2):285-305.

This article examines the ideas of where the incest taboo originates. This taboo makes it inappropriate to have relations with certain people. There are only a handful of groups that do not place a taboo on relations between siblings and also parents and their children. Other taboos include close relatives, but the definition of who a close relative is varies. Parker also looks at the idea of incest avoidance, which is the idea of it being bad to have relations with those who are raised together or others that a person may have close ties with

Parker brings up the idea that the taboo may be biological. Living organisms need variation and react differently to these different stimuli. Parker also notes that animals, besides humans, also avoid having relations with their parents and siblings.

Parker also attempts to answer how the biological taboo that is instinctive also became a social taboo, complete with guilt.

CLARITY RANKING: 2
AMANDA MCMAHON Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin and Joe Heyman)

Penniman, T. K. Beatrice Mary Blackwood. American Anthropologist 1976 Vol. 78 (2): 321-322.

T. K. Penniman wrote this obituary in remembrance of Beatrice Mary Blackwood. She was born in London on May 3, 1889. She was the daughter of the publisher James Blackwood. During her childhood she spent summers on the Isle of Wight and had fond memories of seeing Queen Victoria each year. She was a trailblazer, and eschewed the Victorian mindset of what young women were capable. She studied in Germany and learned the language thoroughly. She also conquered Latin and Greek. Her affinity with languages would serve her well throughout her life. In 1908, she applied for a scholarship at Somerville College in Oxford and began what would become a distinguished scholarly and professional career. When she graduated in 1912 she was granted a title of degree, for women were not allowed degrees until 1920. Finally, in 1920, she was awarded both her B.A. and M.A. on the same day. She worked for a while as an assistant anatomist and “went through the mill with dissections and other work of the department.” She also earned a B.S.c with a thesis on embryology, and was appointed a Demonstrator and Lecturer in Ethnology. She became quite adept at spelunking and became well acquainted with the Abbe Breuil and the French Prehistorians of the day. In a way, she was an early Cultural Resource Manager. She excavated and recorded many sites in Oxford and environs, that were to be built upon; and she often stayed just ahead of the bulldozer.

She met Penniman when he was the Secretary to the Committee for Anthropology of the Pitt Rivers Museum. During her association with this group she was granted the opportunity to travel to New Guinea, and thus began her work in Oceania, which became a cornerstone of her career. Finally, Penniman mentions Blackwood’s propensity of carrying a kitten with her while into the field. The Kukukuku were quite amused by Sally—the cat—and came from long distances to watch it play with a ball of wool. The kitten was a key player in creating a relationship of trust between native peoples and Blackwood.

This obituary is an interesting look at a female anthropologist who would not allow the perceptions of the male dominated world of anthropology to affect her career. As innovative as her personal presence on the anthropological scene appears, she was also involving new technology in her studies. Her photographic recordings of the Kukukuku of New Guinea, are still under the curatorship of the Pitt Rivers Museum. Blackwood was a true groundbreaker and her story should be repeated. It is high time the world is made aware of the fact that Margaret Mead and Ruth Benedict were not the only two women pioneers in anthropology.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
WILLIAM R. GILLEAN California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark W. Allen)

Penniman, T.K. Beatrice Mary Blackwood (1889-1975). American Anthropologist June, 1976 Vol. 78 (2): 321-322.

Beatrice Blackwood had a passion for learning from an early age, and came from an affluent family, enabling her to be one of the few women of the time to attend college. In 1920, women were first allowed to hold degrees, and Blackwood earned both her B.A. and M.A. from Somerville College, at Oxford, in that year. She then went on to work at the college.

Blackwood was truly a pioneer in her day. Over the next thirty years, she did fieldwork in America, Malaysia, and New Guinea, and published a number of pieces from this research. It is interesting to note that even as a particularist, her work encompassed all four fields: archaeology, physical anthropology, linguistics, and ethnology. After her fieldwork, and until her death, Blackwood was involved in the Pitt Rivers Museum at Oxford. Her meticulous collection and cataloging of artifacts gained much attention, and marked a turning point in museum collections worldwide.

CLARITY 3
TAMARA OJANEN Michigan Technological University (Josiah Heyman, Susan Martin)

Reina, Ruben E. Obituaries: John Phillip Gillen 1907-1973. American Anthropologist 1976 Vol. 78: 79-86

John P. Gillin died at the age of sixty-six. He was the son of a distinguished sociology professor, John Lewis Gillin. John Gillin grew up in Iowa where he earned his B.A. in Sociology. After taking a course with Ralph Linton he decided to pursue a doctorate in Anthropology. He gained many of his first experiences traveling with his father and later on archaeological expeditions in the late twenties. During these formative years Gillin decided that a true science of social man through the anthropological approach would lead to answers about, “man and his works.”

John Gillen found himself deeply interested in acculturation of aboriginal populations in South America. The relationships of emerging nation–states and their impact on these populations, he believed, were a concern for anthropology. He stressed that anthropologists shouldn’t be limited to the studies of past change. Gillen believed that culture was a psychological phenomenon, as did many academics of his time. In 1939 he attended a seminar offered by Branislaw Malinowski on the scientific theory of culture.

During the beginning of World War II Gillen was assigned to work in the American Embassy in Lima, Peru. Due to the war, he was unable to return to the U.S. for awhile and became involved in fieldwork in Guatemala. This experience led Gillen to do field research in areas previously untouched by anthropologists. Directly influenced by the culture and personality school Gillen used new approaches to his research such as Rorschach testing. His many experiences in Latin America gave him an expertise in the region. Government officials used his wealth of knowledge regarding political situations in Latin America. Eventually, he became so involved in the politics of Latin America that he began a study in political anthropology and did the only ethnographic study on an Ecuadorian Presidency. He published many of his works including The Ways of Man, and For a Science of Social Men.

Gillin eventually attained the presidency of the American Anthropological Association. Appreciation for his work and character was illustrated by the author of the obituary, colleagues, and students in his last years. In the last sentence of the Obituary he is referred to as a friend and a teacher by Reina. Gillen did much to strengthen the culture and personality school as well as contribute to an applied political anthropology. His work was only the beginning of a long line of active anthropology.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
TAMER SARIELDIN California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Reina, Ruben E. John Phillip Gillin (1907-1973). American Anthropologist 1976 Vol. 78(1): 79-86

John Gillin developed a distinguished career in anthropology throughout his lifetime. He had a deep concern to understand scientifically the “ways of men,” using the cultural theory approach to better understand man’s behavior. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin, Gillin became a Latin American specialist. He urged for more awareness of Latin America by promoting the development of social science in several countries and by leading an interesting and significant expedition to the tropical forests of British Guiana to study the Carib Indians. In the latter years of his career, Gillin was interested in the clarification of the emerging modern Latin American cultures, including those of the Creole Peruvian culture and a Guatemalan group known as the Ladinos.

Gillin published several writings, three of his major publications were: Introduction to Sociology, The ways of Man, and For a Science of Social Men. He also became Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Utah, where he focused his attention to Nine-Mile Canyon and the cultures that were located there. Afterwards he went on to teach at several universities including Duke, Yale, Ohio State University, North Carolina University, and became Dean of the Social Sciences department at the University of Pittsburgh.

CLARITY 3
NICOLE CARLSON Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin, Josiah Heyman)

Rogge, A. E. A Look at Academic Anthropology: Through a Graph Darkly. American Anthropologist December, 1976. Vol. 78 (4):829-843.

In this article Rogge utilizes a new approach, which has been called the “history of science,” to investigate the history of academic anthropology in the United States. To sum up what is meant by the “history of science” the author states that this method “is an external approach characterized by the concern with the activities of scientists as a social group.” In other words, applied to anthropology, this approach looks at the growth and development of the study of anthropology and anthropological knowledge as a whole as opposed to anthropological theory or thought of particular individuals. In this article, the author seeks to find if general patterns of growth and development of the study of anthropology as a whole exist. The author further seeks to compare the growth rate of the study of anthropology to the growth rate of overall anthropological knowledge.

In an attempt to reveal growth patterns in the study of anthropology, the author quantified and measured growth using four variables: the number of memberships in professional anthropological associations, the number of anthropological journals, the number of anthropology departments at colleges and universities within the US, and the number of Ph.D.’s awarded in anthropology. Upon analysis of the data, the author found that the field of anthropology is growing exponentially, doubling at an approximate rate of 15 +/- 5 years. Utilizing a more complex method of measuring the growth of anthropological knowledge, the author concludes that anthropological knowledge is growing at a slower rate, doubling only every 50 +/- 17 years. Claiming that the top producers at any given time will be the ones making the significant contributions to the growth of anthropological knowledge, the author sees the over growth of academic anthropology as wasteful and in need of remedy.

The author concludes this article making a few suggestions on how to remedy the problem. One such way is multiple authored works. By teaming up with the top producers, the knowledge of individuals will contribute to the overall growth of knowledge and make for fewer unproductive contributions. Further, the author suggests that another means of helping reduce the wastefulness of the low producing anthropologist in academia is to diffuse anthropologist into jobs outside of academia. One such avenue is “salvage anthropology,” or what has come to be called by some, cultural resource management.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
BRIAN ARMENTA California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Rogge. A.E. A Look at Academic Anthropology: Through a Graph Darkly American Anthropologist December, 1976 Vol.78(4): 829-843

In this article, A.E. Rogge’s objective is to show that while the field of anthropology as a discipline is important, it is also important to study ‘anthropologists studying anthropology’—the relationship of the discipline of anthropology to society.

Rogge applies past trajectories of growth in other scientific disciplines to anthropology. In order to do this, he calculates the current growth the field is experiencing. Rogge used four different variables in his calculations. These variables are: 1) memberships in current professional organizations, 2) the number of anthropological journals, 3) the number of anthropology departments, and 4) the number of PhDs produced in anthropology.

From a series of calculations and graphs, Rogge shows that every one of the variables has shown an exponential growth. This is shown in the fact that only a minority in the field is publishing literature. Because the knowledge of anthropology is growing linearly, while the field as a whole is growing exponentially, this means that after a while anthropology will become a field governed only by a selective few. The crucial problem is estimating how long anthropology can continue to grow. Rogge acknowledges while he is not able to estimate how long anthropology can continue to grow, he does suggest that feedback mechanisms will regulate the system by slowing it down. One of these is the rising cost of producing anthropologists.

However, he recognizes that in order to avoid this dark future, anthropology needs to be restructured and reorganized. Rogge’s message is that in order to avoid chaos when growth eventually does reach its limit, the system needs to be reorganized. And it is the anthropologists and social scientists who have the knowledge to address these questions and provide possible solutions, which include the expansion of the field into non-academia and more collaborative publishing.

CLARITY RATING: 4
ANNA K. SWARTZ Michigan Technological University (Josiah Heyman and Susan Martin)

Roseberry, William. Rent, Differentiation, and the Development of Capitalism among Peasants. American Anthropologist 1976 Volume 78(1)45-58.

Roseberry purpose here is to explain how peasants are exploited capitalism. The inefficiency of peasant exploitation by capitalists leads Roseberry to divide the outcome into three manifestations. To explain this situation Roseberry defines peasants as persons who control or own land and resources, and produce agriculture for both subsistence and as a surplus product, which a portion or its entirety is appropriated by a large outside economic system. For his purposes he also defines exploitation as the appropriation by non producers of a portion or entirety of the total product of direct producers. Because peasants by definition control at least part of the means of production, Roseberry states that exploitation is caused by the appropriation of ‘rent’, which he defines as any extraction of surplus value not based on the sale of labor power. The possible outcomes are generated by various circumstances like soil fertility, the market, etc. The results are: (1) the peasant is able to give rent, keep a portion of the surplus, and cover cost of maintenance and reproduction of the peasant unit, (2) the peasant is able to give rent and maintain/ reproduce unit, leaving the peasant with no surplus for profit, or (3) the peasant has had a bad year and the surplus value does not cover the rent, cutting into the peasants subsistence cost. This final situation causes the peasant to lower consumption level to stay self-sufficient or go into debt, or both. The second situation keeps the equilibrium and self-sufficiency of the peasant. The first presents the peasant with a comfortable situation of what to do with his surplus. The peasant could raise consumption and put on some extra pounds, spend it on ceremony and ritual or enter the larger economic system. If the system is capitalist, the peasant then becomes a capitalist by investing the surplus. Roseberry only is concerned with peasants involved with larger capitalist systems and which are not consumed by the larger system. Roseberry sets up his thesis by defining his main subjects, giving the proper theoretical background, then gets to the point and clearly explains his thesis.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
MICHAEL RAMIREZ California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Roseberry, William. Rent, Differentiation, and the Development of Capitalism among Peasants. American Anthropologist 1976 Vol. 78(1): 45-58

When a capitalist economic system is implemented it retains some of its precapitalist forms. William Roseberry looks at peasant exploitation within a capitalist market economy. Roseberry starts from the idea that exploitation is an objective term, referred to as the “appropriation by nonproducers of a portion of the total product of direct producers.” Peasants can be defined as people who directly or indirectly own resources that produce products, mainly crops, for their own subsistence and the surplus is given directly or indirectly to people in the larger economic system. These products are then sold into a capitalist market, thus incorporating noncapitalist methods of production into the capitalist system. By taking a Marxist viewpoint to explain how a peasant society functions within a capitalist system, Roseberry uses the term “rent” to describe various forms of payments such as: taxes, actual rent, interest on loans, wholesale prices of products or any extraction of surplus value not based on the sale of labor power. Rent, in this article, is considered the main form of exploitation among peasants.

The practice of precapitalist methods means that peasants control part of their own production and reproduction that cannot be controlled by a capitalist system. The possibility of the development of capitalism within the peasant society has allowed the institutions of capitalism to be implemented, thus surplus production is extracted for the peasants in the form of rent. Roseberry looks at three possible outcomes (A, B and C) for peasants after the extraction of rent. The peasant in situation C ends up paying more in rent, which in turn takes from his surplus. If this were to continue, the peasant would lose control of his means of production and have nothing but labor power. Peasant B resembles the image of a self-sufficient peasant that is neither employed or employs. If there were to be a change in economic conditions, Peasant B’s would enter the ranks of either C or A. Peasant B is considered the unstable situation. Peasant A produces the most surplus, which would permit A to increase consumption and allow him to become a middleman between other peasants and the capitalist system. The differentiation in how much surplus is left after rent is collected has allowed Peasant A to become a capitalist within the peasant society and Peasant C is nothing more than a wage laborer. Peasant B situation is the most unstable and he can end up in either situation A or C (most likely C).

CLARITY RANKING: 3
DOREEN BLAKER Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin, Josiah Heyman)

Sacks, Karen. State Bias and Women’s Status. American Anthropologist September, 1976 Vol. 78 (3):565-569.

Sacks begins with a reference to the United States Supreme Court decision that “Separate but equal” means unequal in our capitalist, industrial society. She discusses gender hierarchy as a distinct quality of our system but points out that Western anthropologists are bias when studying gender roles and equality in non-state societies.

In a state society, sexual equality is equated with androgyny (having neither gender characteristics), no or little sexual division of labor, and equal access to the same realms of power. Sacks argues that in non-states sexual equality may come in more than one form.

She points to Claude Levi-Strauss and the structuralists as an illustration of this state bias because of their assumption that humans conceptualize their world into binary opposites and that in these pairs of opposites, one must dominate the other. Levi-Strauss’s argument that social organization based on relationships between men and perpetuated by the exchange of women as wives is challenged here by ethnographic evidence among the Lovedu of Africa. Sacks argues that among the Lovedu, cross-cousin marriage is preferred and that the father’s sister has just as much authority and power over the arrangement as he does, but perhaps their authority changes at different points in their lives.

Another example of her theory is the discussion of gender roles among the Iroquois prior to European contact. Men and women had very different roles and access to power in their society, but they both had an opportunity to play an equally valued part. While men dealt with external affairs, women dealt with internal issues and even had the power to withhold resources such as food.

She also documents the change in the way sexual roles and access to power changed after European contact when the coastal Delaware sought the protection of the Iroquois from the colonists. Evidence suggests that while Iroquois did view the Delaware in the traditional women’s role politically because they took a neutral stance in conflicts between natives and colonists, the Iroquois themselves did not view them as inferior. Colonists applied their own interpretation of what women and men’s roles were and should be.

We should not assume that non-state societies (and gender roles within them) are constructed the same way as state societies. The question of which sex is valued more may not have meaning to a non-state society, because each duty is indispensable for their survival.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
LEANN MOORE California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Sacks, Karen. State Bias and Women’s Status. American Anthropologist 1976 Vol. 78(3):565-569

While Karen Sacks acknowledges that the feminist movement has had a positive impact in the field of anthropology, she also concludes that there is more to be done. The point of Sack’s article is to address what she terms as ‘the state bias’ that still exists in the field. ‘The state bias’ comes into play when classifying relationships within a society and it can best be described as the idea that there is a universal female subordination and that all societal relationships are based on the ‘Levi-Straussian’ model, in which men are the dominant social actors and women are commodities to be exchanged by men.

Sacks acknowledges that this is true for some state societies, but is concerned this particular characteristic of state societies is being imposed universally in all societies (specifically nonstate). For example, while sex roles are rigid in many state societies, Sacks cites examples of the Nuer women, who have legal autonomy and own cattle. In these egalitarian societies, sex does not determine roles.

Sacks supports her case by giving counterexamples to ‘the state bias’. She uses the Iroquois, the Eskimos, and the Lovedu of South Africa as evidence.

CLARITY RATING: 4
ANNA K. SWARTZ Michigan Technological University (Josiah Heyman and Susan Martin)

Service, Elman R., Richard K. Beardsley, and Beth Dillingham. Leslie Alvin White (1900-1975). American Anthropologist 1976 Vol. 78: 612-629.

The obituary written for Leslie A. White traces his life history and his accomplishments through the years. Leslie A. White is definitely a key figure in the development of the discipline of anthropology. At the time of his career however, he was a highly controversial figure. His works and contributions are respected by many academics and fields outside of anthropology. Leslie A. White is usually remembered for his very scientific approach to anthropology and ecological concerns to the evolution of cultures. In his own opinion, his science of culture, or Culturology, was his greatest contribution to the field.

Leslie A. White is usually classified under the theoretical school of Neo-Evolutionists with others such as Childe and Steward. White himself, however, believed that he was not much different from the nineteenth century evolutionists. His argument claimed that the old evolutionists such as Lewis H. Morgan were simply misunderstood. To the dismay of many Boasians in American anthropological circles he created heavy debates, conflict, and controversy in anthropology departments across the nation. The writer of the obituary expresses White’s personality as being one that was so immersed in his work that often he ignored much of the debates and continued his work unconcerned with the administration on his campuses. At this time in America, Boasian styled anthropology was the status quo and the issue of culture change was extremely sensitive. This did not stop White from developing his theories on energy capture and the evolution of culture. He was increasingly interested in an ethnology that “united theory and practice,” an ecological approach. In his American Anthropological Association address in 1964 he emphasized the practicality of applying anthropology to the study of modern national cultures and capitalism, which illustrated his Marxist influences.

Service et. al. give White a lot of credit for standing by his beliefs and not wavering under pressure from administrators and public scrutiny. I believe that White himself was proud of doing so. Leslie A. White was definitely extremely influential to the developing theoretical evolution in anthropology and is still seen as an essential contributor to the discipline and all the social sciences. He is also an important figure in the re-routing of anthropological theory.

CLARITY RATING: 5
TAMER SARIELDIN California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Service, E.R. et al. Leslie Alvin White (1900-1975). American Anthropologist September, 1976 Vol. 78 (3): 612-629.

Leslie White contributed much to the field of social sciences. Though he began his highly honored career in psychology, his work quickly spread to encompass all branches of social science. White wanted to understand why cultures behave the way they do, and psychology alone could not answer this question.

Early is his career, White conducted field research in the American Southwest. Based on this research he produced five ethnological monographs. The monographs were viewed as remarkable achievements of the time. He not only believed in “salvage ethnology,” studying current culture was just as important to him. White felt anthropologists should be more involved in the world around them, as opposed to the cultures of the past.

White was among the first to signal a break with the Boasian school of thinking, and return to the earlier theories of Spencer, Morgan, and Tylor. He helped spur the reestablished of evolutionary thinking, and published his Evolution of Culture with his views on the subject. In this, he focused on energy capture as a measure of evolution. White is probably most famous for his theory of culturology, described in his work Science of Culture. He saw culture as a system within itself. Looking at this “nation of culture” he was able to derive at generalizations and laws about cultures as a whole.

In 1930, White began teaching at the University of Michigan, and stayed until his retirement in 1970. He was key in shaping the university’s program in social science. White can be credited with cultivating generations of prominent social scientists. His courses were a hit with students, though he was often at odds with the administration and his colleagues.

CLARITY 3
TAMARA OJANEN Michigan Technological University (Josiah Heyman, Susan Martin)

Skinner, William. Maurice Freedman. American Anthropologist 1976 Volume 78 (4):871-885

Maurice Freedman was born in London, England on December 11, 1920. He received a degree in English from King’s College in London. He was a soldier and was stationed in India, which may have contributed to his interest in anthropology. He received a graduate degree in anthropology from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). He also met his wife (with whom he closely worked) at LSE. After completing his doctoral research in Singapore, Freedman accepted a lectureship from LSE. He was later made a professor in 1965 and in 1970 accepted a chair at Oxford. Freedman died on July 14,1975 of a heart attack. He was fifty-four years old.

Freedman focused most of his attention on Chinese and Jewish studies. He documented the Chinese family, marriage, law, religion, and community organization. Just prior to his death, he was conducting research on the history of Chinese anthropology. Freedman is probably best known for his analysis of Chinese kinship patterns. Freedman was managing editor for the Jewish Journal of Sociology and later replaced his good friend as editor while his wife received her husband’s old position. Freedman also studied race relations and ethnic minorities.

One of Freedman’s most successful academic efforts was the London-Cornell Project. This program united LSE and Cornell University’s Oriental and African Studies in the research of East and Southeast Asia. Freeman was also on the New York Social Science Research Council Subcommittee on Research on Chinese Society. He helped organize the Subcommittee’s first conference. Freedman is referred to as an ethical man who was concerned first and foremost with the study of humanity.

CLARITY RANKING:4
BROOKE BURNS California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Skinner, William. Obituaries: Maurice Freedman. American Anthropologist December, 1976 Vol.78 (4):871-885.

Maurice Freedman was born in London, England on December 11, 1920 and died at the early age of 54 on July 14, 1975. During his lifetime he was able to impact anthropology in many ways through educational anthropology; he contributed through work on monographs, Chinese lineages, aspects of Chinese kinship, Chinese society, Jewish studies, anthropological ethics, sociology of religion, legal anthropology, and political anthropology. Freedman attended graduate school at the London School of Economics and Political Science, where he met his wife and intellectual counterpart Judith Djamour. This is where his appreciation of education began to grow and would eventually lead him to holding academic positions at the London School of Academics, Oxford, Yale, University of Malaya, and Cornell.

Chinese society was Freedman’s primary focus as an anthropologist, but not his only interest. He is attributed with bringing Chinese culture into anthropological study. Freedman’s Chinese studies were divided into four phases, including the classic monograph on Chinese family and marriage, articles on Chinese law, Chinese religion, and Chinese community. He conducted his studies in a way that included studying the history of the culture and once having an understanding worked through ethnography. Freedman was also an advocate of “Big Anthropology,” which rejected the notion of generalizing a small community as being the same as the entire society.

Although Chinese anthropology was his focus, Freeman, who was Jewish himself, also conducted Jewish studies, but declared that Jewish studies should not be done exclusively by Jewish anthropologists. He published several essays and suggestions for research on Jewish minorities. At the center of all of Freedman’s studies was his concern with interethnic relations as a matter of both public concern and scientific interest. This was the core belief of Freedman because he believed that studies of different cultures, such as the Chinese culture, need to be done in order to be able to view the world impartially.

The enormous impact that Freedman had on the world of anthropology is shown by the many professional positions he held: serving as the Royal Anthropological Society President, chairman of the Committee on South East Asian Studies in the United Kingdom, chairman of the Social Anthropology Committee of the Social Science Research Council, and editor of the Jewish Journal of Sociology and the British Journal of Sociology. Freedman’s ability to be elected to all of these positions displays the type of character his colleagues trusted him to be, and also exhibits his firm stance against intellectual dishonesty.

Freedman is recognized for bringing anthropology to Southeast Asia with the intention of broadening the understanding of people to the world around them. He viewed anthropology as a pursuit of the total study of whatever is chosen for investigation, stressing that generalizing is a detriment to the goal of anthropology: understanding the human experience wherever it is occurring.

CLARITY: 3
BRADLEY CLOUSER University of San Diego (Denise Couch)

Spiro, Melford E. Obituaries: Alfred Irving Hallowell. American Anthropologist September, 1976 Vol.78 (3): 608-610.

The obituary that Spiro wrote on Alfred Irving Hallowell is a tribute to a great man. Hallowell was born in 1892, and in 1974, at the age of 82, anthropology and a great many other disciplines lost what Spiro considered “one of the most distinguished and influential scholars and teachers.” Hallowell devoted much of his scholarly career studying the Ojibwa American Indians, and he demonstrated great ethnographic skills using a holistic approach.

In his early days, Hallowell had an interest in sociology, but under the influence of Frank Speck he discovered anthropology. Hallowell received his Ph.D. in anthropology from the University of Pennsylvania in 1924, and went on to have an outstanding career. Hallowell made “original and enduring contributions to a wide array of fields”, which include: psychology, literature, biology, psychoanalysis, sociology, literature, history, and anthropology. One of the most important achievements that Hallowell contributed in the field was the concept of “social order.” This notion allowed people to see the concept of a “culturally constituted behavioral environment.” Hallowell received various honors and awards for his contributions in the field, and his life’s work has been very influential to a great many people.

This obituary is easy to read, and it gives the reader a feeling of just how important Hallowell was in the numerous fields he contributed to. Spiro allows the reader a look into the life of a man that thoroughly enjoyed his career.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
VANESSA RAMOS California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Spiro, Melford E. Alfred Irving Hallowell 1892-1974. American Anthropologist September 1976. Volume 78 (3): 608-611.

A distinguished and influential scholar and teacher of anthropology, Alfred Irving Hallowell made many contributions to the fields of social organization, psychological anthropology, acculturation, behavioral evolution, cultural ecology and cultural anthropology. His book Culture and Experience (1955) emphasized his greatest achievements in anthropology and behavioral evolution. A second book Contributions to Anthropology (1976) details his historical and ethnographic study of the Northern Ojibwa.

Hallowell is recognized for his studies that uncover conceptual links between animal and human societies and the systematic relationships between kin terms and ecology. He also delineated the relationship between the inner world of social actors and the human social order. By elaborating on a culturally constituted behavioral environment, he demonstrated how human social order is possible. He saw the emphasis put on culture and personality as an inadequate way to define human social order. Rather he believed that individuals within a society interact around their social environment.

CLARITY RANKING: 5
DOREEN BLAKER Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin, Josiah Heyman)

Webster, David L. On Theocracies. American Anthropologist 1976, Vol. 78(4): 812-827

David Webster’s purpose for writing this article is to evaluate critically the implications of the concept of theocracy in terms of anthropological thought on the evolution and structure of complex societies. The early pristine states and others similar to it were characterized by negative reciprocity and could have only existed under certain circumstances. The three ideal situations under which these hierarchical societies could have existed are: (1) they provided the necessary functions for the wider society; (2) people believed that they provided such functions even when they do not; (3) or there was a sufficient concentration of coercive physical force to maintain the hierarchical status quo in the face of internal and external stresses. These are the bases by which the author identifies theocracies.

Another fundamental goal of this article is to make it absolutely clear what a theocracy is. Webster’s hope was to organize, conceptualize and describe these types of societies beyond the theocratic surface. A definite understanding of what these complex societies are is the purpose for this paper.

The author draws on his own personal knowledge of the subject to achieve his goal of educating the reader on the in-depth aspects of theocracies. Webster compares theocratic with secular societies and refers to the work of some of his colleagues to support his on idea that these types of societies are more than just religious based phenomenon. By tracing cultures evolutionary steps, past societies can effectively be evaluated and described. Other techniques such as referring to other anthropologist studies on the same subject matter, combined with the former, make this an interesting article to read.

CLARITY RATING: 4
ETHAN JACKSON California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Webster, David L. On Theocracies. American Anthropologist March, 1976 78(1):812-828.

Webster attempts to define the idea of theocracy, or a form of worship to a higher power or being, as something that is rooted in the evolution of society, and came about with the state-type institution. The majority of this article includes the ideas of many others who have studied states and societies and their view of theocracy.

Webster’s basic assertion is that when societies changed from being kin-based to being class-structured, there was a need to say who had power and where it came from. Many times, the power was “given” to a person not based on lineage, but from a divine power. This divine power validated a person’s ability to rule.

In the end, Webster decides that so many people have so many different views on theocracy and society that “unless we fundamentally modify our understanding of theocratic organization… we would be better off to discard the concept entirely.”

CLARITY RANKING: 1
AMANDA MCMAHON Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin and Joe Heyman)

Wright, Jerome W. Mark Hanna Watkins. American Anthropologist 1976 Vol. 78 (2): 889.

In this obituary, written by Jerome W. Wright, we learn of the legacy of Mark Hanna Watkins. Dr. Watkins had taught at Howard University since 1947. He had formally retired in 1972 but continued to teach courses in anthropology and linguistics until just prior to his death. He was born in 1903 in Huntsville, Texas. In 1926, he earned his B.S. in Education from Prairie View State College. His graduate studies in anthropology were conducted at the University of Chicago. He was awarded the Master of Arts in 1930 and three years later earned his Ph.D. It appears to be an uncontested certainty that Mark Hanna Watkins was the first African American to receive the Ph.D. in anthropology. At the University of Chicago he studied with Edward Sapir. Indeed, this relationship nurtured his interest in what would become the major focus of his career, linguistics. Though the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis would not be fully developed until the 1950s, it is hard to imagine that the tenets of cognitive anthropology and ethnoscience were not major influences on his theoretical background.

Dr. Watkins major linguistic research involved the study of African and Native American languages. Furthermore, he had field experience in Haiti, Guatemala, Costa Rica, and South Africa. The majority of his published work was the result of his analysis of the Bantu languages.

Not only did Dr. Watkins teach courses in physical anthropology and linguistics at Howard, he was a visiting professor at numerous institutions and was a member of several organizations from the American Anthropological Association to the American Sociological Association, and the African Studies Association to the International Linguistic Association.

Perhaps his most important gift to the field of anthropology was his effect on his students. In the words of Jerome Wright, “There is perhaps no other single individual who has been more responsible for introducing the field of anthropology to black students. There is hardly a graduate in liberal arts at Howard in the last twenty-five years who does not remember his sense of humor and his concern about student welfare.”

CLARITY: 3
WILLIAM R. GILLEAN California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark W. Allen)

Wright, Jerome. Mark Hanna Watkins 1903-1976. American Anthropologist December 1976. Volume 78(4): 889

Recognized as the first black person to receive a Ph.D in anthropology, Mark Watkins received his B.S. from Prairie View State College in 1926 and continued his education at the University of Chicago, where he received his Masters and Ph.D. He was a fellow of the American Anthropological Association, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the American Sociological Associations and was an active member in many other anthropological organizations.

Mark Watkins area of study was linguistics, concentrating mainly on African and Native American languages, with his major publications coming from his analyses of the Bantu language. His greatest enjoyment was teaching and he was a professor at Howard University, where he taught courses in physical anthropology for over twenty-five years. Mark Hanna Watkins is credited with introducing the field of anthropology to many black students.

CLARITY 3
DOREEN BLAKER Michigan Technological University (Susan Martin, Josiah Heyman)

Young, Allan. Some Implications of Medical Beliefs and Practices for Social Anthropology. American Anthropologist March, 1976 Vol.78(1):5-24.

Young focuses on two points in his article: one, that people hold to medical traditions because they are effective and can be observed to achieve expected results and two, these traditions confirm their sense of reality in a tangible, structured order. He breaks down his discussion into four sections: obstacles to interpreting, practical explanations, social explanations, and ontological consequences.

Young defines two obstacles while interpreting data. He stresses the lack of organization in categorizing illnesses and disease. Pertinent information, which would be helpful in defining an ailment, is scattered about in medical records and is difficult to find. Secondly, Young attacks the focus of western medical thought. Interest in sickness is centered on symptoms and the efficacy of scientific practices to cure these symptoms rather than defining what a sickness really is and where it stems from. He believes there are causes of sickness episodes that reach far beyond basic physical ailments. He states three points; there are always “motives for action” behind every serious sickness, illness teaches and reaffirms certain lessons about reality, and sickness episodes communicate complex personal experiences in an easily expressed organic way. These Ontological consequences relate to a person’s sense of reality. In the section practical explanations, Young defines the idea of “work” in different cultures. A patient’s idea of a treatment working is based on two themes: what people hope to happen after a medical procedure, and what people expect to happen. Furthermore, in his section titled social explanations, Young mentions how sicknesses are culturally accepted and judged bases on social facts. Some ailments are treated as real illnesses, whereas other sicknesses are feigned.

Young article touches upon the functionalist approach. His argument that physical illnesses are a response to psychological expressions is similar to Malinowski’s belief that society exists to meet the basic needs of the people. Young uses Durkheim’s idea of social cohesion. The shared system of beliefs in a culture shapes an individual’s response and behavior, such as the motives of a sickness addressed in the article. Young’s argument is strongly ethnoscientific in theme. He stresses an emic view of studying culture and focuses on analyzing the rules a person applies to his culture in order to understand the behavior preformed.

The article is very detailed and informative, but some of the concepts are hard to understand unless read through several times. His style of writing is highly structured and laid out in point by point format.

CLARITY RATING: 3
ANGELA KUHLMANN California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Mark Allen)

Young, Allan. Some Implications of Medical Beliefs and Practices for Social Anthropology. American Anthropologist December 1976 Vol. 78 (4): 5-24.

Young’s focus is on why people conform to their medical beliefs and practices. Instead of studying them as a part of something else, like religion, he seeks to develop a concept explaining medical beliefs and practices solely, with their own implications for social life. He finds the most obvious reason people follow their beliefs and practices are because they work. There are both practical and social explanations for this.

People believe in medical practices because they produce expected results. Therapies give illnesses cultural recognizability, and even with out curing, are able to produce specific signs of their effects. Young accepts that not all therapies work, but points out this does little to undermine the medical system as a whole. Inconsistencies are either explained practically or socially. In the practical sense, people develop an uncritical attitude toward their medical system, and actually understand very little about it. Because of this, they often have no grounds on which to question failure. Social explanations emphasize the person’s responsibility for their illness. The afflicted either did something to anger a disease-causing agent, like a witch, or participated in disease producing behavior, like drug use. By seeking the aid of a healer, the person is able to pass the responsibility of their illness to this healer.

Though it may seem people are somewhat passive in their attitudes toward their medical system, their belief in it influences all realms of social life. The article closes by discussing how medical beliefs and practices play a key role in shaping our concept of reality. Sickness is a key factor in all societies, affecting people from all walks of life. Therefore, the way a society deals with sickness tends to give much insight into the values and norms of that society.

CLARITY RANKING: 4
TAMARA OJANEN Michigan Technological University (Josiah Heyman, Susan Martin)