Human Organization 1965
Antoun, Richard. Conservatism and Change in the Village Community: A Jordanian Case Study. Human Organization, 1965 Vol. 24(1):4-10
Richard Antoun addresses two questions in this article. Why do villages exist at all? What are the circumstances of social conservatism? Antoun goes on to answer the latter question in great depth by using four variables: economic, ideological, spatial, and structural. The broader question of why the village exists at all is dealt with only briefly. All of the evidence provided in this article has been gathered from field work in Jordan done in the village of Kufr al-Ma.
In this examination the main question the author begs us to ask ourselves is, why have things stayed the same, rather than, why have things changed? Antoun attempts to answer the question, why have the villagers of Kufr al-Ma remained socially conservative while their urban counterparts have become more liberal over time.
Kufr al-Ma’s social structure is examined in relation to who owned, or share-cropped land, and who did not. If the villager did not own, or share-crop his own land then in most cases that villager had very few opportunities to work in the village and then had to travel outside of the local region to find employment. The jobs outside of the local region paid more money thus creating great economic stratification among the villagers. Despite this economic stratification, social groups were formed on the basis of kinship and friendship, not economic differentiation.
The village also relies strongly on Islamic ethics of generosity, hospitality and charity, and traditional customs. These customs include distribution of your personal wealth, believed to help reduce utilization of personal wealth for personal gain of power and status.
In Kufr al-Ma a strong justice system that relies heavily on civil and religious courts has been set up. There is a council of village elders that ultimately end up settling most cases of breach of law and social conduct. These verdicts impact the way people of the village live their lives. Therefore the villagers are expected to maintain their standards of conduct, not only within the village, but also when they travel to the more urban areas of Jordan. Traditional forces of social-control are wide-reaching.
Social relationships were examined between urbanites residing in Kufr al-Ma, and the long-time residents of the village. For this examination, the life of the village school teacher was analyzed. The teacher was said to be in the village, but not of the village. The teacher made no lasting relationships with the villagers due to lack of kinship ties. Compounding the problem is the fact that the villagers have an intense distrust of outsiders, believing them to be government informants.
The villagers have maintained their traditional ways of life despite the influences of urban areas, which reflect a more modern and liberal lifestyle. The villagers have managed to do this by sticking with their traditional belief and values system. Ultimately the belief that there is no wealth other than brothers and kin, has brought many people back to the village after seeking economic opportunities in the towns. There was a deep psychic connection these people held to the village and its associated way of life. There was a gap in these peoples’ lives that could only be filled by returning to the village.
ADAM WEISSE University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Antoun, Richard T. Conservatism and Change in the Village Community: A Jordanian Case Study. Human Organization 1965 Vol. 24: 4-10.
Antoun’s article attempt to answer the question of why do villages still exist. To answer this question he uses his field study in the village Kufr al-Ma in Palestine. The first thing he does is give an account of the job cycle and mobility of Muflih al-Hakim. This gives the reader a look into the life of one man from the village wholeft and then returned. His return is part of the reason why the village life has still persisted in the Palestinian area. He returns because he marries and settles down with a family. Through out the paper this is a reason why people return to the village according to Antoun. They may choose to seek temporary employment in the villages if they are a non-landowner, but they then return to raise their family in the village.
The next aspect that he looks at while writing this article is the make-up of the village. The people who remain in the village are mostly farmers. This is because the other options are jobs that are located in the city. The reason for this is because there is no government system in the villages and the closest city is twenty miles away, so they work too far away to still live in the village. The next thing that Antoun looks at is the difference in income among the individuals and families who stay within the village. He also compares this to those individuals who leave either for the army, a government position, or to work as wage earners in the city. He also looks at the religious customs of the people who live in the area and how that impacts those who remain in the village. Finally, he gives an account of a teacher who came to the village and ended up being in the village but not part of the village. In conclusion he looked at the economic, ideological, spatial, and structural aspect of the village, and failed to answer his question of why does the village still exist.
ANNA ALBERT University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Ayoub, Victor F. Conflict Resolution and Social Reorganization in a Lebanese Village.Human Organization, 1965 Vol.24(1):11-17
In this article Ayoub addresses how members of a Druze village in post World War II Lebanon have changed their traditional way of solving disputes through a mediation procedure called a waasta through the possible involvement of the superimposed courts associated with the new central administration. He discusses how long-established mediation practices were employed to keep solidarity within the Druze and how the fundamental basis for this feeling was that of maintaining strong relationships within the kin group. However, with new exposure to capital, goods, services, and different cultural practices displayed by the media of Beirut, village life has begun to change as people have assimilated to new lifestyles. With this came a change in values, roles, and social structure that have tempted individuals in the community to take disputes to the “winner take all” system of the courts, disregarding the traditional way of maintaining proper kin relations. By creating this new social organization, Ayoub argues, the Druze village is becoming part of a greater community: the nation of Lebanon.
To support his argument, Ayoub tells of three disputes in which at least one of the factions involved decides to ignore the traditional waasta method of mediation, which usually concludes with both parties dividing some sort of capital, and employ the court system. Immediately providing information regarding the social structure and economics of the Druze village, Ayoub then tells of disputes over workman’s compensation, marriage rights, and land ownership. In these stories it is made apparent how traditional views of these subject matters and that of kin relationships have changed. How individuals treat and maintain relationships with distant members of their kin have changed. There are new expectations in disputes in that now instead of believing “he is a kinsman, therefore I expect him to accept mediation” one believes a kinsman should accept a magistrate’s resolution.
MICHAEL BALISTRERI University of Wisconsin – Madison (Larry Nesper)
Ayoub, Victor. Conflict Resolution and Social Reorganization in a Lebanese Village. Human Organization, Spring 1965 Vol. (1) 24:11-17.
The article addresses how the inhabitants of newly named sovereign states begin to recognize and utilize established conflict resolutions. Victor Ayoub delves deeper into this by focusing on how the change in populace social structure allows for the option to seek conflict resolution outside of traditional modes. He does this by referencing how the gradual change in social structure is coming about through his research and observation of a Lebanese town.
The author begins his address of this issue by giving a general background into his study locale. Ayoub describes the population makeup of Lebanon as being religiously diverse as well as strong in religious tradition and gives further background knowledge of a specific Lebanese village from which he derives his research. Some of the issues he addresses in regards to background information are the values held by the village as a whole. These issues are comprised of kinship roles, the status of women, economics, religion, village social structure, history and traditional conflict resolution methods.
Three separate examples of attempted and sometimes successful divergence from traditional conflict resolutions, in favor of the court system were given. First, Ayoub gives an account of a case dealing with workman’s compensation between kin. Second, is a description of a young woman’s kidnapping after her refusal of marriage to her cousin, whom is entitled to her hand according to kinship roles. Finally, a land dispute between two distant kinsmen which deals with one party trying to claim land twenty years after it had been turned over to the other party. Traditional conflict resolution within the village is made through compromise, and closely supervised and supported by the kin of those involved. The man seeking workman’s compensation and the young woman met with an unwillingness to support court action by village members. However, this was to a varying degree, the young woman was allowed to not marry her cousin and return to the village as a maiden. These signifies change in two ways, first, that the option to seek help outside of the traditional system is viable, and secondly, the way kin relationships, which play a large part of traditional conflict resolution, are becoming more flexible. The third account, concerning a land dispute was first put to the traditional conflict resolution and when that attempt stalled the court system was looked to, the case was won and the ruling was upheld.
Each account appealed to the non-traditional court system, with varying degrees of success. Each example was accompanied by problems encountered due to the cultural situation as well as explanations as to the mechanism for change in each case. Ayoub concludes his article by reiterating the idea of changing social structure and how it can be applied in a broader picture. The author sees this change, not as an end to community traditions, but as a movement towards a larger, unified national community.
KARI WITTLIEFF University of Wisconsin (Larry Nesper).
Barclay, Harold. Process in the Arab Sudan. Human Organization, 1965 Vol. 24 (1): 43-48
In “Process in the Arab Sudan”, Harold Barclay sets out to discuss cultural change in the Sudan in terms of that culture’s contact with the forces of Islam and the West. His research refers specifically to the Arabs who live along the Nile, chiefly those in the Khartoum province. The discussion focuses primarily on the effect of “Westernization” on these people: how contact with the West has played a secularizing role and caused the abandonment of various sacred rituals. He also discusses the processes of “Islamization” and “Arabization”, both of which have been occurring since Arabs reached the Sudan thirteen hundred years ago and have had a different effect than the more modern “Westernizing” force.
To illustrate cultural change, Barclay examines the change in the observance of traditional rituals. The word “rituals” is used to refer to three distinct parts of the life of a typical Sudanese Arab of this region. The first kind of ritual is associated directly with the religion of Islam – prayers, fasting, observance of holidays, adherence to dietary laws, and other laws of a religious nature. The second type of ritual has more to do with socio-religious movements within the culture, such as saint cults and brotherhoods. The third type of ritual involves ceremonies surrounding life – marriage, birth, death. Barclay explores how each of these categories has or has not been impacted by the Sudan’s contact with Western culture and ideas.
Barclay’s basic thesis is fairly simple – the religious rituals have remained largely untouched by the West, but the other two types show changes directly related to the secularizing force of Western society. His supporting evidence is descriptive, rather than scientific, and is presented in a clearly structured manner. First, for each of the three types of ritual, he explains the meaning, significance and how it is generally observed. He then goes on to present examples of how the ritual has or has not changed and why, illustrating his points with examples drawn from his personal experience. Through these experiences, he concludes that to study cultural change in the Sudan, one must look at many demographic factors, as well as major social movements. In this way one can understand how the process of Westernization has effected the people of the Sudan in their both their everyday and in their religious lives.
LAURA BERNSTEIN University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper).
Beckett, Jeremy R. Australia’s Melanesian Minority: Political Development in the Torres Straits Islands. Human Organization 1965 Vol. 24:152-158.
The Torres Straits Island group, located just north of Australia, was formally annexed by Britain in 1888, and still remained under Australian control at the time this article was published. The author focuses on the formal and informal political structure of the native Melanesian population (numbering approximately 7000 people in 1965) because he sees them as a good example of an “indigenous, coloured minority living in a modern, wealthy, and predominately white nation-state” (152). He finds this topic worthy of discussion in light of the many other native populations around the world that were beginning to seek greater political influence and representation in their national governments. Beckett makes the critique that while many “primitive” peoples living in a modern nation are encouraged to manage their internal affairs themselves, they are less often encouraged to become active in the government of that country in general.
His evidence is mostly a short history of the islanders’ government. He describes the political structure of the islands before contact with Europeans, up through what was occurring when the article was published. This includes not only “the proper channels” but also significant events such as labor strikes and the formation of the Aborigines and Torres Straits Islanders Advancement League. These more informal political actions served to bring attention to the islanders’ issues and in some ways precipitated the formation of more formal legislation. He also notes that while the political influence of the islanders on the mainland is growing, local authority is determined in part by the amount of perceived influence leaders have with the federal government. He cites Murray and Badu islands as examples of this.
In general, evidence is presented clearly and chronologically, with the appropriate historical examples and their social and legislative consequences. While he shies away from making generalizations about other native groups and their interactions with a larger government, it is nevertheless his main topic. In that sense, this article is an excellent case study in a developing debate on indigenous peoples’ rights and representation.
LYNNETTE KLEINSASSER University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Befu, Harumi. Contastive Acculturation of California Japanese: Comparative Approach to the Study of Immigrants. Human Organization, 1965. Vol.24: 209-216
Befu uses a comparative method to try and understand why some immigrants, who have similar cultural backgrounds, when immersed into a new culture, become acculturated to that new culture while others do not.
In Befu’s study, he compared two Japanese communities who had settled in neighboring villages; Chestnut Creek and Sierra. He chose two communities that had come from the same region in Japan and that were socio-economically the same. One of the communities today is still not economically well off, while the other is doing quite well. Befu was curious to find out why this occurred.
When the two communities first came over to North America Befu noted that they both intended to return to Japan once they had become economically sound. Both communities found seasonal jobs and kept to themselves in their tight knit communities. However, with the events of World War II, Befu was informed that the communities did not intend to return to Japan. With that in mind, he knew that the communities now had to start thinking about their economical status in the United States.
Befu observed that the people from Chestnut Creek did not have many opportunities to plan for a long future. He recorded that most of the people in the community left in search of a village that could offer them more. Those who stayed did not associate with other people of different cultural backgrounds, which did not help their economy. The community in Sierra on the other hand, did have opportunities to better themselves. Befu noted that there was land to buy and many of the families were able to start businesses. They also formed and participated in many organizations within and outside of their community. This helped their community acculturate nicely to the new region in which they inhabited.
Befu concludes that if immigrants participate in events that are going on in the areas in which they live they can economically better themselves. However, if they decide to be ignorant and not work with each other and others, they will only be hurting themselves economically and socially.
CAITLIN LELINE University of Wisconsin- Madison (Larry Nesper)
Boek, Walter. Field Techniques in Delineating the Structure of Community Leadership.Human Organization, 1965 Vol.24:358-364.
Walter Boek mentions that sociologists and political scientists have dissimilar methods in obtaining information in communities, but that anthropologists have a third method, in this case, overlooked, which minimizes the errors that can occur in the other two. Boek argues the importance of the utilization and acknowledgement of the anthropologists’ methods in obtaining information during fieldwork through five steps, and uses some of his own personal experiences to help prove the validity of these methods.
Boek’s main concern, and main objective, is to prove that by using anthropological methodology in analysis of community leadership, you can gain access and trust within the group of people you are studying with great success. Boek seems bitter that Thomas F. Anton, who critiqued various concepts of power in communities, failed to mention anthropologists’ research methods, and thus, Boek is out to prove its importance.
Boek’s basic argument is that we need to take a deeper look at the methods used by anthropologists. He wants to prove that these methods are very helpful in gaining access into different communities. He speaks of the mechanics of leadership in different communities, and describes the inner thoughts of the leaders. He recognizes the fact that one cannot simply learn the inside-outs of leadership without first proving one’s trustworthiness and reliability. He suggests that we must first prove to our informants that we are worthy of the information that we want from them.
To prove his points, Boek compiles a list of five steps that an anthropologist should follow in order to be successful in obtaining the information they want. Boek uses some examples of his own fieldwork to express and illustrate just how important these five steps are in gaining desirable information. He also mentions that by following these five steps, he and his co-worker helped to establish and open a new, much needed, county health department. By using specific and personal examples in his article, he demonstrates that the information he is portraying is valuable and important in being a respectable and trustworthy fieldworker, and will allow us the ability to gain insight on others’ cultures and societies in a graceful manner.
Boek helps to shine light on the anthropologists’ methods when he recognized that all of the perspectives weren’t being covered. He helps to uncover and prove the importance of every action a researcher takes when doing fieldwork. His article was made even more powerful by providing a ‘guideline,’ and by citing examples of success in his own fieldwork. By reading Boek’s article, we are made to remember that intrusion on a community needs to be done gracefully and carefully. We need to be careful how we come about our information, and make sure we don’t violate any confidences.
ANGELA YONKER University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Borhek, J.T. Role-Orientations and Organizational Stability. Human Organization, 1965. Vol.24: 332-38.
Borhek chooses to examine different distributions of individuals and their specific roles within the Seventh-Day Adventist Church (SDA). Borhek argues that different personal beliefs surrounding the purposes of the SDA church have a direct relationship to the structure and function of the church. In addition, his theories are based upon his view that societal influence and opinion inevitably changes as time progresses. It is because of this outside societal change that every member of the church determines his or her own actions and commitment level within the church. The above observations help Borhek to formulate the term “role-orientation” to describe his decision to classify the members of the entire church into three separate categories.
Borhek collects data over a time frame of six months and includes interviews and observations of church related activities. The three role-orientations Borhek distinguishes are: doctrine-orientated, community-orientated, and group-orientated. He then continues to summarize the characteristics that comprise each group.
The doctrine-orientated group contains six out of the twenty people Borhek interviewed; however, analysis shows that around half of the congregation fit this role. These members of the church reject the media and do not accept any aspects of popular culture. In addition, they emphasize doctrine, missionary practice, and conversion more than the other two groups that will be discussed. Also they had the least amount of formal education and total net income.
The second group Borhek classifies is the community-orientated subgroup of the SDA church. Nine of the twenty members interviewed belong to this distinction. This group has the highest amount of education and is the most tolerant of non-SDA members. They do not reject outside culture and focus more on public ideas regarding matters such as education and social welfare. Borhek sees this group as the connection between the church and the outside world. Twenty-five percent of church members fit into this category.
The third segregation Borhek names are the group-orientated role. Five of the twenty people studied fit into this distinction. These individuals do not examine ideological themes within the context of the church. Instead, they focus on the immediate congregation and relationships between individuals. Their contribution to the church focuses on administrative tasks. They show hostility toward those members who belong to a lower socioeconomic status, like those affiliated with the doctrine-orientated group. Approximately twenty-five percent of SDA members belong to this group.
Borhek claims based on his findings that role-orientated segregation within the SDA church serves specific purposes with intended results. It is due to this segregation that the church functions as a whole. Each role-orientated group serves its function and purpose in keeping the church successful. Each group specializes in the strengths its individuals possess. This maintains balance within the congregation. Each of the three groups provides personal support to other members within the group. This eliminates examining differences between individuals because each group is comprised of similar interests. This makes it unnecessary to travel outside the confines of the specific group because the individual is socially content in his/her position. Performing a set task for the group fulfills the needs of the church; therefore, each separate group can perform its set tasks, in turn, creating balance and stability within the total group.
ABIGAIL ROSS University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Bramfield, Theodore. Anthropotherapy—Toward Theory and Practice. Human Organization, 1965 Vol. 24: 288-293
In this article, Bramfield provides a brief outline of the problems facing education and proposes the collaboration of anthropologists and psychologists to address major issues concerning individual students in a greater school setting in order to achieve what he terms “social-self-realization”.
He outlines the problem by stating that education is the primary arena in which modern cultures transmit valuable information to future generations within a social context. Issues of individual and group identity, conflict, and cooperation play themselves out on a daily basis within schools. Yet, up to this point, anthropologists are rarely consulted for their expertise and school psychologists tend to focus on individuals exhibiting behaviors that impede learning.
To remedy this, he advocates a combining of the efforts and professional experience of both anthropologists and psychologists to work with school systems to better understand the dynamics of conflict and cooperation and how these effect both individual students and the school system as a whole. The end result would be what he calls “social-self-realization”, i.e., an ability for students and the educational system to fully achieve potential.
The article is not always clear however. I often got the impression that Bramfield was suggesting that anthropologists play a role in prescribing certain behaviors; a social engineering project of sorts. He also fails to provide concrete examples how such a collaboration might work. For these reasons, the article should receive a rating of about 3 on the clarity scale.
Spindler, George. Comment on Theodore Bramfield. Human Organization 1965, Vol. 24: 293-295.
Spindler agrees with Bramfield’s view that education can benefit much from anthropology but raises certain questions that fall into two major categories. The first is a request for concrete examples outlining the problem. Bramfield provides none. The second, a series of questions about how such a collaboration would work. Should each school or district provide resident anthropologists as they do school psychologists for example?
Opler, Morris E. Comment on Theodore Bramfield. Human Organization 1965, Vol. 24: 295.
Essentially, Opler questions whether we need a term such as “anthropotherapy” when terms such as “active anthropology” and “applied anthropology” already exist. He suggests that a new term would only muddle the issue and confuse what anthropologists already do.
CONSTANTINE JOHN REGAS University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Clifton, James A. The Southern Ute Tribe as a Fixed Membership Group. Human Organization, 1965. Vol. 24: 319-327.
In James A. Clifton’s article, “The Southern Ute Tribe as a Fixed Membership Group,” he discusses the relationship between the members of the Ute tribe and how the tribe’s social structure is now based in lieu of the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934. Clifton shows in his article that the Ute tribe is not what we would consider a kinship group based upon nuclear families, but more so a fixed-membership group, as described by Leonard Plotnicov’s defining attributes. Through this fixed-membership group the true members of the tribe are able to attain certain benefits, but this group has long since moved away from homogeneity and stability because of their corporate ways.
In Clifton’s introduction, he points out that reservation Indian communities are similar to “small-scale societies” and in this way he looked at Margaret Mead’s interpretation of these communities from the 1930’s. Mead suggests that since these types of social structures have been disrupted because of “acculturative influences,” this leads to “cultural disintegration or disorganization, the fragmentation of values and behavior, anomie and so on.” With this breaking down of their social structure, it is no wonder that the Ute Tribe has become corporate in nature and as Clifton states “a legal identity, a defined area of responsibilities, and a jurisdiction.”
Gaining access to the Ute Tribe is quite difficult, even for members of a similar tribe or bloodline. It is usually gained by birth and can be attained by marriage, but these members are vulnerable to constant scrutiny while they try to adhere to the tribe’s norms and values. Being that Clifton thinks that the members of this tribe were not one homogeneous cultural tradition when they were joined in 1936, it is easy to see that the Ute Tribe is trying to now create a clear kinship group and repairing damage created in the past. In trying to satisfy this group and keep it’s members, the tribal structure services the “needs and wants” of it’s people in return creating this corporate structure. And through this corporate structure, the Ute tribe is able to better conform to the outside world while still servicing it’s own needs.
James A. Clilfton’s article is somewhat clear in its interpretation of why the Southern Ute Tribe is structurally based the way it is today. He states in his conclusion that he feels the tribe will be able to culturally adapt to the social changes in the world through its current management. But because of its non-nuclear social structure based upon past family traditions and values it will never be able to return to its ancient ways.
STEPHANIE A. ROBERTS University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Crawford, Robert W. Cultural Change and Communications in Morocco. Human Organization, 1965 Vol. 24: 73-77.
Robert Crawford’s article discusses how communication is useful in today’s world, describing the various methods and how they have influenced the cultural and social changes of Morocco. The methods of communication he discusses are radio, film, television, and the press.
To start off, Crawford gives the reader some background history on Morocco, beginning in 1956 with the rule of King Muhammad V. The people of Morocco feared the heir to the throne, Prince Moulay Hassan, due to the powerful position he would have to fill, but were happy to see that he rightfully deserved to be the King when his time came in 1961.
In 1958, a revolt occurred in the Rif Mountains against the government and the implementation of the government. The quickness in which King Muhammad V regained order was in large part due to the radio. The words of the King could be heard all over, either via the radio or through the grapevine.
The Moroccan government soon realized the importance of the radio and the full potential it can have on influencing the thinking of people. Therefore, the government soon began to work toward the nationalization of this method of communication. Morocco has a high rate of illiteracy, so the radio is an important communication media, both in the propagandistic and educational sense.
The next method of communication examined is film. While the radio is primarily directed to the sense of hearing, film is directed toward sight, hearing, and if done with certain sensitivity and in color, can affect the sense of smell and touch. Crawford would give outdoor viewings at a mosque that were of both educational and entertainment value. The audience was not only interested in the films themselves, but also in the equipment that was used in order to make the viewings possible.
Next, Crawford discussed the usage of television. The television is used in much the same way as film, but, as Crawford states, “This technological development will, however, have relatively little positive and constructive effect unless serious attention is given to the development of programming in terms which the audience can understand and cope with” (Page 76).
Crawford believes that the media used in Morocco that has the least effect on the population is that of the press. This is in large part due to the fact that a large portion of the population is illiterate. Those who read the newspaper are fairly highly educated (Western-exposed group). The newspapers are found to reflect the interest of the groups controlling them, therefore strengthening the beliefs already held by the readers.
Crawford concludes by saying that the effectiveness of the different methods of communication as constructive tools is limited due to the shifting policies, which control them. Today, King Hassan realizes the potential these media tools have and intends to promote them not only to enhance his position, but also to further the economic and social development of Morocco.
AMBER DRURY University of Wisconsin – Madison (Larry Nesper)
Darity, William A. Some Sociocultural Factors in the Administration of Technical Assistance and Training in Health. Human Organization, 1965 Vol. 24: 78-83.
Darity addresses the westernization of Middle Eastern societies. He concentrates on the actions of Middle Easterners which seem contradictory to Westerners, specifically exploring some of the difficulties health technicians may encounter while teaching western medical practices to the people of the region. Darity asserts that without a basic knowledge of these contradictions health technicians workers will make little headway in addressing the problems people face.
The body of the article is organized under three headings: Some General Observations, Some Sociocultural Factors Affecting Health Services, and Some Sociocultural Factors Related to the Training of Health Personnel.
In the general observation section, Darity emphasizes the point that although Middle Easterners may speak a Western language and wear Western clothing, they are still Middle Easterners. Darity’s evidence for this gap between appearance and reality is the prevailing views of educated Middle Easterners that women are valuable only as housewives. He observes that Western style education is relatively new in the region, and although it is coveted, there are many socioeconomic barriers to receiving education. In addition, those who do receive education mostly come from a rural, but culturally rich background. In his mind, this accounts for even educated, assimilated Middle Easterners continuing to act as though they are from the Middle East.
The section on health services is concerned with traditional medical practices of the region, and how health technicians may work within these traditions. He describes the two different situations that technicians may encounter. First, conditions where western medical care can simply augment traditional treatments for an ailment, and second, situations in which technicians must attempt to modify the traditional views. In both cases Darity stresses that the technician must work within the framework of Middle Eastern culture in order to be effective.
Darity describes some of the obstacles health technicians may encounter when preparing Middle Easterners to be health and welfare workers in the segment on training. He emphasizes that though these people achieved a high level of education, they have not completely left their traditional beliefs behind. Some problems Darity predicts that health technicians may face include an unwillingness of their trainees to adapt health care to the beliefs of some of their countrymen, nationalist pride, and a desire for prestigious jobs, not the down and dirty work of providing real services to poverty stricken regions.
Throughout his article Darity stresses two points; Westernized Middle Easterners have retained much of their cultural heritage and beliefs, often in ways that are contradictory to their Western education, and Western health technicians, in order to be effective, must find way of working within this cultural heritage.
In arguing these points, Darity relies entirely upon secondary sources. He even manages to cite himself on several occasions, however one instance Darity falls back on anecdotal evidence to support his argument. Such is the case with his description of traditional medical practices. His habit is to make an assertion, then cite another writer who has made the same assertion on the topic as evidence, expound upon its relevance, and then repeat.
ERIC FIEDLER University of Wisconsin – Madison (Larry Nesper)
Dean, Lois. Minersville: A Study in Socioeconomic Stagnation. Human Organization, 1965 Vol.24: 254-261.
“Minersville” investigates the causes and effects of the booming labor surplus in rural and small town areas of the United States during the Cold War. The people living in such areas tend to be stuck in a perpetual social and economic decline stemming from their lack to “keep up” with modern America. The communities isolate themselves, accept little to no help from outsiders, including their own Federal Government, and become apathetic to their own demise. Local leadership reflects the population at large by resisting programs for social improvement and economic recovery.
Dean attempts to explain the phenomenon of decaying small towns in the shadow of rapid urban and suburban development by hypothesizing that such a community alienates themselves from the rest of the world, wears blinders to possible solutions, and lacks overall spirit to amend the problem, much less clearly see the causes. These deteriorating communities will neither rebuild, nor sustain its existence while mired in the perpetual indifference towards economic growth and social development.
The researcher studies a region in southern Illinois to draw parallels between the attitudes and political feelings of its leaders, and other communities similarly situated. Dean surveyed a broad range of communities, including a suburb and a decaying coal town. Interviews with influential townspeople, local politicians and educators, as well as unemployment rates and political tendencies show a sharp contrast between the desperate small town and its booming suburban counterpart. The research reflects a resounding resistance to outside influence that echoes the rejection of policies of the modern United States on issues of race relations, military action, labor relations, communism, and universalism. Due to a lack of leadership and drive to overcome obstacles of isolation and alienation, Dean finds a desire for a renovation of their current situation. It seems that the people of the area, and perhaps in similar areas of the country, have fallen into a cycle of crumbling of social infrastructure and economic development.
ISAAC PERKINS University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Dohrenwend, Barbara. Some Effects of Open and Closed Questions on Respondents’ Answers. Human Organization 1965 Vol. 24(3):175-184.
Dohrenwend explores the effects open versus closed questions have on responses received in interviews in order to evaluate specificity, depth, and validity of responses. She states that prior to her study, the common belief was that if one desired to measure a certain attitudinal dimension, a closed question should be used, but if one desired to understand motivations and feelings in depth, open questions should be used. Dohrenwend conducted a controlled study in which she attempted to standardize all factors including the respondents themselves, the interviewers, and the experience of the respondents prior to the interview. The thirty-two respondents were all female undergraduates at Cornell, the four interviewers were all experienced interviewers and the respondents all went through a pseudo experiment to minimize the effect of experience on responses.
Through her study, Dohrenwend found that responders were more resistant to answering questions about feelings and opinions, but that their resistance was lowered as the interview continued. Variability in response was minimized by the pseudo experiment, but completely standardized interviewer performance was not possible. Regarding usability of response in interviews, Dohrenwend found that open questions don’t necessarily lessen usability; it is influenced more by interaction between interviewer and question form than just question form. Open questions often lacked self-revelation and inference regarding motives and feelings in responses so they are not as effective in obtaining depth.
Dohrenwend concluded that overall, closed questions are more effective in research interviews due to the fact that subject matter is more important that question form to produce valid answers. Open questions allow deviation from the topic when questions relate to the self and when depth is desired. Higher proportions of depth were achieved through the use of closed questions. She did note, however that the subject matter used may have minimized the effects of open and closed question forms because the subject matter was more salient and structured than usual field subject matters. She also stated that evidence has been found that lower education levels make open questions less effective. Lastly, Dohrenwend offered that open questions offer a better measure of salience than closed questions, and that less pre-testing is necessary to study motives and opinions when using open questions. Therefore, open questions should not be eliminated completely.
KATIE KRUEGER University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Donoghue, John and Daniel Whitney. The Gappei: Local Organization in Japan. Human Organization 1965 Vol. 24: 217-221.
In this article John Donoghue and Daniel Whitney explore the rapid administrative and economic changes that followed the village-town amalgamation that occurred in Japan in between 1889 and 1956, also know as the gappei. By comparing two villages that had been amalgamated with one that had not, they studied what specific aspects of the villages had transformed as a result of the gappei. The authors interviewed village leaders who had come into power after the merger in order to learn what specific financial and political changes had been made since the original amalgamation.
In their brief summary of the history of the gappei, the authors state that from 1899 to 1965 there had been 3,200 mergers of small villages into larger towns. As a result of these mergers the authors claim that several aspects of the towns had changed, including the hierarchy of power among villagers, an increased level of communication between towns and the nation, as well as changes to the physical landscape of the towns. Quotes from local officials in two amalgamated towns focus on the changes that had occurred since the gappei, such as mechanized equipment, new roads, and new town halls, as well as a new sense of future planning on the part of town leaders. In the section of the article labeled The problems of Non-Amalgamation, the authors discuss aspects of the village that had maintained the traditional small village status. In this village the inhabitants are faced with burdens such as carrying water in buckets as opposed to constructed irrigation for agriculture. Donoghue and Whitney attribute these tasks to the village’s failure to participate in the gappei.
Donoghue and Whitney conclude that, although the amalgamation took effort on the part of the villages and their leaders, and that the system is not without its faults, it had “far reaching effects on leadership patterns, information linkages and social and economic development.” The authors suggest that research should continue to focus on the “new Japan” that emerged as a result of the gappei.
KALI LOSBY University of Wisconsin, Madison (Larry Nesper)
Dubey, D. C. and William Sutton. A Rural “Man in the Middle”: The Indian Village Level Worker in Community Development. Human Organization, 1965 Vol.24:148–151.
This article seeks to describe the pressures affecting the Village Level Worker (VLW) in the Community Development Program of India. When conflicts arise between villagers and the Block Development Officers (BDO), the job of the VLW is to act as a liaison between these two groups. He represents the BDO administration to the villagers and speaks on behalf of them to his BDO superiors. Pressures from the village arise because villagers want to obtain as much from the government as possible with the least amount of contribution. The VLW must convince the villagers to add their labor to government resources in order to create progress. The block expects the VLW to produce results in the village while placing as little strain upon the superiors and using as little resources as possible. More tension arises in the VLW position because the job is ambiguously defined, and villagers make petty demands on these people while supervisors use them for errands and odd jobs.
Communicating ideas from the villagers to the block supervisors is risky and hazardous for a VLW in the established bureaucracy. Relating the ideas and policies of the superiors down to the villagers is difficult because the VLW often does not understand what these messages mean or how to explain them. Too many unreasonable duties are expected of the VLW, who must cope with pressures from the villagers, the BDO, and the extension officers.
VLW adjustment has resulted in three patterns. Some workers resign to escape the unrealistic duties. Others attempt their own strategies of trying to fulfill their communication duties by taking a moderate ground between the two groups. Finally, some favor one side, most commonly the side of one’s supervisors. Few favor the villagers because this will not lead to job security. Those VLWs who were able to create the strongest links between the two groups invested many long hours and much hard work.
This paper was based on a year of fieldwork in India conducted on fifteen Village Level Workers in eight Community Development Blocks. It is well organized and contains helpful headings to group together different aspects of the VLW job difficulties.
SHAINA KLEIN University of Wisconsin – Madison (Larry Nesper)
Forbes, Jack D. A Comprehensive Program for Tribal Development in the United States. Human Organization, 1965. Vol.24: 159-161.
In his article, Jack Forbes presents a number of proposals designed to encourage tribal self-development for American Indian tribes. He acknowledges the advances made by the Kennedy and Johnson administrations but cites governmental paternalism as the major barrier to tribal independence.
Forbes’s first proposal to stimulate tribal self-development is to reorganize operational procedures. He argues for creating an Inter-Tribal Council composed of delegates chosen by several tribes. This body would be responsible for, among other things, advising government agencies on tribal affairs, developing programs to stimulate economic growth, and creating an Inter-Tribal Development Corporation (ITDC). He argues that the ITDC is a necessity as many tribes are not viable economic entities that can support themselves once government wardship is phased out. The ITDC would eventually take over all programs of the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) and provide economic assistance for tribal programs and employment for Native people.
Forbes’s second proposal is to increase the land area available to tribes. He argues that Indian Claims Cases have shown that many western tribes have a legitimate claim to land that is now considered public domain. He suggests that lands that were illegally seized and arbitrarily divided should be returned to tribes, at least in portion. Forbes recognizes that some might argue that these proposals suggest giving away public wealth and land. He counters with the government’s willingness to do this for other groups and individuals, and argues that Native peoples are entitled to some compensation for what was taken from them.
Forbes’s third proposal is to rethink the political status of tribes. He makes several suggestions but argues that the best procedure is to recognize Tribal Regions with their own governments, independent of the state. As the U.S. government claims to value international law and the sanctity of treaties, he feels that any federal government attempt to deprive tribes of their own government should be questioned legally and morally.
Forbes’s fourth proposal relates to Native people’s voting rights. He emphasizes the need for legislation allowing for people to vote in languages other than English. He recognizes the desire of the U.S. government for all citizens to learn English but considers this to have no bearing on one’s right to vote.
Lastly, Forbes argues strongly for the creation of a Native American University, one that would target the needs of tribal students and societies but would also be open to non-Native peoples. He acknowledges the creation of the Institute of American Indian Arts by the BIA but suggests it does not offer a complete vocational education that would include subjects such as politics, business, or social work.
Forbes uses a method for convincing readers of the importance of tribal self-development that addresses the dominant culture’s point of view. He acknowledges steps already taken by white society and possible objections to his proposals. In each case, he offers a counterpoint that attempts to appeal to our sense of equality and justice.
MARGARET KLEMT University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Freeman, Howard E. and Lambert, Jr., Camille. The Influence of Community Groups on Health Matters. Human Organization, 1965 Vol. 24(2): 353-357.
This article concerns the influence of formal community groups such as religious institutions, unions, and political organizations on matters of social policy. The authors question the political approach of involving such membership groups with regard to whether an organization’s stance will influence community members positively or negatively.
Study results obtained by the authors indicate that in matters of health, routinely seeking out and involving as many membership groups as possible is not an unequivocally prudent social strategy. One must consider such factors as the size of membership in a given organization, the likelihood that members will align themselves with the group to which they belong, and the influence of a group on those in the community who are not members. The authors’ study suggests that the overall influence of many volunteer organizations in a given community is negative.
The authors’ argument is based on a study of working-class families in a single suburb. Informants were given a list of twelve community organizations and asked to identify the two that they would be most likely to follow for advice in voting on health issues, and the two that they would be least likely to follow. They were then asked about their own membership in various groups. The authors present several charts detailing the number of members in each organization; the positive and negative influences identified by members and non-members, respectively; and the net influence of each organization, which the authors explain with a numerically-weighted formula. They examine the data by assigning a rank and a score to each group. In all but two cases the organizations score negatively, the exceptions being the Parent Teacher Organization and the Catholic Church. The prevalence of negative net scores leads the authors to assert that if a health-action program wishes to use membership groups to obtain community support, it is necessary to consider each organization individually and assess whether the likelihood that members and non-members will follow its guidance is worth risking its possible negative influence.
PARTHY SCHACHTER University of Wisconsin – Madison (Larry Nesper)
Gould, Harold A. Modern Medicine and Folk Cognition in Rural India. Human Organization (1965) Vol.24: 201-208.
In this article, Gould addresses issues involving health care delivery for residents of a rural village in India. Many factors contribute to whether an individual uses folk medicine, seeks modern medical care, or relies on religious practices for treatment of illness or injury. Additional factors involve issues of trust and who provides the treatment.
Illnesses fall into two categories: chronic non-incapacitating dysfunctions and critical incapacitating dysfunctions. The type of illness is the primary determinant as to what type of medical treatment is sought. Chronic non-incapacitating dysfunctions are generally drawn out, cyclical, partially debilitating illnesses, rarely fatal, which allow the sufferer to carry on with a semblance of the normal routine. Critical incapacitating dysfunctions are illnesses that could prove life threatening, debilitating, or cause severe pain. Some illnesses can move from one category to the other, such as asthma or TB.
The author looks at four types of treatment delivery: patient-sought indigenous therapy, patient-sought scientific therapy; or, based on personal ties to the anthropologist, medicine from the anthropologist or treatment by a medical doctor at the urging of the anthropologist. Treatment by a medical doctor is provided in less than 10% of the cases, generally out of desperation. The social connection within the framework of the village is more important than access to scientific methodology. The anthropologist becomes a respected substitute for, and intermediary with the nearest medical doctor.
The author also discusses the case for preventive medicine, such as immunizations for smallpox. Even though smallpox is rampant, villagers refuse to be immunized, believing that the disease is caused by their misdeeds and they are receiving divine punishment. They believe that the only method of treatment is a religious rite. Refusal to accept immunization is partially due to its delivery by outsiders. Another issue discussed is the use of antibiotics for infections. Drug treatments that are inexpensive and available to villagers are not obtained independently, but are readily accepted when provided by the anthropologist, because of their social relationship. The social experience is crucial.
Gould clearly makes a case for the provision of public health delivery in the underdeveloped societies. To secure cooperation it is necessary to combine both technical qualifications and interpersonal skills, and to deal with the individuals on there own societal terms.
KAREN LEDERER University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Gulick, John. Introduction. Human Organization, 1965 Vol.(1)24:1-3.
Volume 24 of the journal, Human Organization was compiled as a record and explanation of the changing aspects of culture in the Middle East. John Gulick, a contributor of one of the volume’s articles, also edited this volume. The first essay in the journal is his introduction to the area of study presented within. In this essay, Gulick gives an explanation for topic choice and outlines aspects that will be explored in order to illuminate Middle Eastern culture. Subtopics include social structure, technology and economics, institutional continuities and innovation, and problems of cross-cultural communication. Gulick discusses a few of the articles presented under each subtopic heading to give the reader a general overview of the journal’s content. Along with discussing the journal’s foci, Gulick tries to familiarize the reader with the authors and the people they study. He assures us that the authors were chosen because of their current, active work with the cultures in question. This assures a modern view of each culture. He also tells us that the Middle Easterners studied are, for the most part, uninfluenced by western culture. This is an important factor, since customs and routines can be changed or abandoned when the people are presented with a more efficient, logical (to westerners) belief or method. When discussing the people and their culture, he casts aside some stereotypes and elucidates a small number of facts from each article. For example, he reveals that only 5% of all Middle Easterners exist as pastoral nomads, a type of subsistence that has, in traditional western thought, been the archetype of Middle Eastern culture. Instead, we learn that most Middle Easterners have contempt for village life, preferring urban life. Overall, this introduction serves mainly to pique the reader’s interest in the topics within through discussion of topics, short presentations of individual articles, and debunking misrepresentations of Middle Eastern cultures.
JENNIFER WEIS University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Gulick, John. Old Values and New Institutions in a Lebanese Arab City. Human Organization, 1965. Vol. 2, No.1: 49-52.
John Gulick addresses urban concepts that arose during the nineteenth century, a period of rapid urban growth as the Industrial Revolution was sweeping across Western Europe and North America. The concepts employ terms such as ‘city,’ ‘suburb,’ and ‘urbanization.’ The latter often results in greater numbers of people living in tighter surroundings. From the traditional western perspective, these conditions are seen in a negative light, since they imply increases in poverty, disease, and bad working conditions, to name a few.
Gulick sets out to prove that urban concepts can be seen positively and that the western outlook has been shortsighted. He questions another of these ‘sound’ beliefs: that the “Western industrialized” city-model is the only form of industrialization. In this model, certain prerequisites are deemed necessary to the emergence of an industrialized city. He argues that the “Western industrialized” city-model cannot be the only form of industrialized city. He bases this argument on Asian and African cities that have become industrialized without meeting all of the necessary requirements. Better theories on urban social dynamics are clearly needed, and Gulick advocates multiple “cross-cultural urban studies.” That is, he feels close investigation of specific cities that have experienced urban growth and industrialization must be completed. These results should be compared to the western model and case studies from other cities. Only then will it be possible to make broad generalizations concerning prerequisites for industrialization and the effects of urbanization.
Gulick chooses a specific city to prove the value of urban studies. He compares city life in Tripoli, a Mediterranean seaport in Lebanon, in1914 and in 1964. Over this fifty-year period the city has become lightly industrialized but has retained many of its cultural patterns. This case study proves that “urbanization per se does not necessarily destroy traditional cultures (52).” It also bolsters the argument of assuming that all industrialized cities have met the prerequisites imposed by the Western model.
First, the evidence given shows how Tripoli has become industrialized: the economic base has shifted to light industrial; health and governmental services, education, and public utilities have increased; modern travel and communication have been adopted. Gulick emphasizes that these characteristics have simply been added to the extant agrarian-commercial patterns of Lebanese Arab culture. He then provides evidence of these patterns, none of which are found in Western industrial culture. They include the Islamic tendency to belong to a sect, the importance of family loyalty and thus the practice of nepotism, and the prestige of literacy, which is “coupled with disdain for manual and mechanical labor (52).” This last pattern in particular would seemingly hamper the development of an industrialized city, yet Tripoli prevailed and emerged industrialized while retaining its age-old values and customs.
MARIEKA BROUWER University of Wisconsin, Madison (Larry Nesper).
Halpern, Joel. Peasant Culture and Urbanization in Yugoslavia. Human Organization, 1965 Vol.24:162-174.
In this article, Joel Halpern claims that the world is moving towards eventual universality. This pattern is seen most noticeably in technological and scientific realms as machines such as automobiles or airplanes spread all over the world. Halpern sets out to study the consequences and change this is causing within various sub-cultures, namely peasant societies.
To begin, the author gives a brief history of peasant life and the common notion that such societies are resistant to change. This is seen as a problem to most industrializing societies. As technology replaces peasant labor on farms, developing nations are less interested in peasant labor and more dependent on their “mental allegiance,” or their minds. Overall, Halpern stresses that change due to development and “modernization” affects both peasant communities and urbanites.
Yugoslavia, a country that had recently undergone a political revolution and was in the process of a social revolution, is used as the main example of visible changes occurring in urban and village life. Although peasants have farming and land rights built into the Yugoslavian constitution, the practice of farming is seen as archaic and the trend is for the young to move to cities. Many of these people who go to the cities continue strong ties with their villages often still commuting back and forth. Halpern labels these people as peasant-workers. Such people are crucial in reforming peasant life because they bring change to the community.
Evidence of the difficulty of making the village-town transition is given by three personal accounts of people in various stages of this shift. The life story is given for a peasant-worker commuting from his village, for a skilled worker in the city still tied to his village, and for an “urban intellectual” two generations removed from village life.
For the remainder of the article, Halpern discusses the process of urbanization in recent history in Yugoslavian cities. Although it is one of the least urbanized countries in Europe, all of the major cities have doubled in population in the past thirty years. The shift from rural to urban life has occurred in different ways in each region. In western areas, using Croatia as an example, government has long replaced kin groups, and the transition from peasant to townsmen was fast and easy. However, areas where kin relations are still very strong, such as Serbia, change slowly and with more resistance.
By using Yugoslavia and its different regions as an example of the changes occurring from urbanization, Halpern attempts to show the inevitable nature of change in rural communities as caused by technological development. He believes that we can better determine the consequences of such change on each sub-culture if we understand how this process is occurring in all areas of the world.
ELENA KOUNESKI University of Wisconsin, Madison (Larry Nesper)
Hirsch, Abraham M. “Importing” and “Adopting” Skills. Human Organization 1965 Vol.24:124-127
Hirsch discusses the issues of “importing”, which is to bring in a person or persons into a society in order to obtain a skill that they exhibit, and “adopting”, in which one or more members of the society actually take on a new skill. Both of these can be used when it becomes clear that a society is lacking in a specific skill that has become necessary or wanted in that particular society.
Hirsch states that adopting a new skill is utilized when a society deems the skill useful not only to the society, but particularly to the individual obtaining the skill. He goes on to explain that persons are often willing to take on this new skill because it advances their status in that society, especially if they are considered to be of a lower class or caste in their community. This appears to explain, in some part, the lack of new skills acquired by certain societies that are organized in a tribe-like fashion. They are only capable of raising their status by exhibiting strength. Taking on a new skill will not increase their status; hence they do not bother to.
Hirsch explains importing as a good short-term solution to bringing in the necessary skills a society lacks, but needs. When a person is brought into a society to provide a skill, they are often isolated, being the outsider, and have no other choice but to do the work they were brought in to do, often times at a lower pay rate than is deserved. One of the greatest advantages of importation is the time and effort saved in training someone already a part of the society to learn the needed skill. However convenient it is in the short-term, in the long run, the benefit of importation diminishes when the skill is not taken up fairly early by original members of the society. According to Hirsch, societies that have developed quickly are those that have “adopted” rather than imported the necessary skills.
Hirsch also discusses the assistance programs that aid in sending out importers to different countries where a skill is needed. The officials in these programs attempt to minimize the amount of time importers spend in a country by speeding up the adoption process. Hirsch explains that certain skills are more easily adopted than others, giving an example that industrial production skills have historically been adopted more easily than agricultural production skills.
Hirsch further explains that there must be incentives for the persons trained in order for them to more easily adopt a new skill. Those incentives may include a new title, or a financial reward, which is as much for the improved social status as it is for the pure monetary value. Hirsch believes there is much more research to be done on the topic of skill adoption.
AIMEE HUGL University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Hurt, Wesley R. & Brown, Richard M. Social Drinking Patterns of the Yankton Sioux.Human Organization 1965 Vol. 24: 222-230.
Hurt and Brown argue that the Dakota Indians of Yankton, South Dakota formed their unique social drinking pattern by adapting their traditional culture to life on a reservation. Beginning with a brief history of how alcohol was introduced to the Indians, the authors describe how social drinking patterns evolved in their culture to the high incidence of drinking and crime that is witnessed today.
Hurt and Brown did their fieldwork focusing on two uniquely different taverns on the reservation. By observing public social gatherings they analyzed their data by organizing the information according to age and sex of the participants at each bar. Their observations were grouped into the following categories: young men, young women, middle-aged and older men, and middle-aged and older women. By looking at each group separately one is clearly shown an exclusive glimpse into the Indian social drinking culture.
The authors found, by observation, that there was a “significant relationship… between the social drinking patterns and the relatively more restricted opportunity that the Indian men have than do the women in asserting their respective roles” (p.222). They observed that the Dakota Sioux have culturally based traits that emphasize boasting and aggression in social settings, as well as a high value placed on generosity. The culture showed that men in Sioux Indian culture competed for prestige by bragging about their war adventures. However, now that the tribes were centered on the reservation with no wars to prove their bravery, drinking filled in this gap. Drinking became a substitute for the men to prove their bravery. Tribal ceremonies and social gatherings became a time for telling how much one had drunk and how much they were still able to consume. Drinking parties were also a time for the men to show off how generous they could be by providing large quantity of alcohol to the attendants.
Through the field study of these people the authors show that there are distinctive features that prove how the Indians adapted to a restricted life on the reservation by substituting alcohol for older cultural endeavors.
ELISE MATTESON University of Wisconsin – Madison. (Larry Nesper)
Jeffery, Thomas. Educational Testing in Afghanistan. Human Organization, 1965 Vol. 24: 83-88
In this article, Thomas Jeffery examines the organization of Afghanistan’s school system, focusing on the Department of Evaluation and Measurement’s efforts to standardize testing procedures throughout the country and to improve the general level of education. Jeffery initially points out that Afghanistan is a landlocked country with poor ground transportation, which, until the invention of the airplane, remained largely isolated from its neighbors. Now, as people are able to travel more freely, Afghanistan has opened up to the world, realizing a need for improved job training, technology, and education. In order to advance as quickly as possible, Afghanistan asked a number of countries for assistance in developing a plan to standardize their educational system. In this article, Jeffery concentrates specifically on the United States’ programs and ideas for achieving this goal.
The need for testing begins when an Afghan student finishes sixth grade. He has two choices if he wishes to continue his education: he can gain admission either to a secondary school or to a pre-vocational school. However, the enrollment at both of these institutions is quite limited and developing a standard means for selecting applicants becomes necessary. Initially, a team from the Teachers College at Columbia University (the TCCU Team) developed a three-part abstract reasoning test in order to determine the general education level of sixth graders around the country. The team discovered that both those administering the exams as well as the students needed a fair amount of training. Jeffery states, “every attempt had been made to stress the need for following the instructions to the letter, but apparently they did not.”
Based upon these results, the team created admissions tests for students entering 7th grade, students applying to vocational schools, and students wishing to attend the university in Kabul. These tests function very much like the SAT or the ACT: they measure students’ mental capacities and/or acquired knowledge. They also serve as concrete evidence when a student questions why a certain institution has rejected him. Furthermore, they quell arguments between the ever-competitive vocational schools, each of which desires the very best students. And finally, test results help to place students in the appropriate faculties at the university. (Students at Kabul University don’t choose which school or college they will attend, rather they indicate their preference and are assigned to a school by an admissions officer.) Overall, school assignments are now based on more than just students’ secondary school academic records, providing a broader view of the students’ abilities
All in all, Jeffery shows how quickly new testing methods are bringing Afghanistan’s educational system up to par with the rest of the world. As an expert with first hand experience on the subject, he relies on himself for most of the information when another perspective would be beneficial. In addition, he skims over several issues (such as women and education) and neglects to define a few terms. However, Jeffery paints an overall clear picture of Afghanistan as a constantly changing and progressing country, eager to become an international figure.
REBECCA FLAX, University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Jones, Garth N. Strategies and Tactics of Planned Organizational Change: Case Examples in the Modernization Process of Traditional Societies. Human Organization, 1965. Vol.24(3):192-200.
This article is about incorporating structural and social change into traditional societies. Jones believes that the conscious application of knowledge assists in the transformation from traditional to modern. Understanding the social and political structure of a community is an important tool to control and manipulate change and achieve goals. The author questions how to efficiently integrate modern technologies into communities. He analyzes examples that isolate strategies and tactics that have aided in planned organizational change. His examples were selected based on successful attempts at planned organization.
Several strategies are employed based on the individual needs of a community. Coercive strategies use restrictive power to accomplish goals. The strategy of pressure involves the use of force. The problem encountered was that change was administered by a group of outsiders and although successful, may not be continually maintained. The strategy of stress induction uses organizational chaos to its advantage. The revitalized system may reduce opposition to change. However the author classified the example used in the article as weak. Normative strategies use manipulation to achieve compliance. The strategy of participation is the combined effort of community and administration. The community is consulted and involved before the changes take place. The example cited failed because the technological innovations were ineffective and poorly planned. The strategy of education and training can be very effective when implemented under the right circumstances. However, the author notes that this strategy can be very costly, time consuming and results are not guaranteed. The example was successful because a series of progressive programs and relationships were formed between the community and the administration. Utilitarian strategies control the dispersal of material resources to retain power or initiate change. The strategy of placement involves assurance and deliberation. The two examples cited were more related to technological conversion than traditional replacement. In each example trustworthy friends or existing employees were transferred into new positions. The strategy of empiricism is based on community need, cultural compatibility, and objective proof. If these conditions exist and are accepted by the community than the changes will be effective.
Jones also cites examples of tactics that have strategic value. The tactic of action research is when the researcher becomes the manipulator of change. The tactic of technical modification is when new technology is introduced and incompatible elements are removed. The tactic of marginality is when acculturated individuals become the vehicle for change.
Overall, the information was presented as a persuasive argument for planned organizational change. The author acknowledges that his case studies only reflect successful change and points out problems within each strategy. He believes that continued implementation, analysis and evaluation of these strategies and tactics are needed in order to fuse traditional communities with technological development.
SHANNON LAWRENCE University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Khalaf, Samir G. Industrial Conflict in Lebanon. Human Organization Spring, 1965 Vol.24(1):25-33.
In this article Khalaf examines conflict trends within Lebanon’s industrial society, the origins of these conflicts and their apparent resolutions. He examines the conditions that cause trends in labor-management conflicts and how effective the means of resolution are. He attempts to find discrepancies in social structure that have led to industrial conflict. Through the use of statistics which survey strike tendencies and conflict origin in Lebanon, it becomes clear that laborers most often attempt to rectify unfavorable situations with strikes and that most disputes reported to the Conciliation Board are from management. Upon this discovery Khalaf narrows his focus to examining Lebanese labor strikes.
Khalaf argues that Lebanese laborers use strikes, and use them ineffectively, for a number of reasons which circumvent economic insecurity. For laborers to have viability in an industrial conflict they must have cohesiveness, hence they should form a union which must be recognized. In Lebanon the labor movement is weak and lacks leadership and as a result the demands of the laborers are often negated. This set of circumstances often results in spontaneous strikes of protest, with aspirations of obtaining higher wages and gaining better working conditions. The goals of a typical laborer strike in Lebanon are a result of economic insecurity, which Khalaf investigates thoroughly.
By looking at Lebanese culture, history and social structure Khalaf is able to propose number of reasons why the ineffective strikes of the working class occur. Bargaining is a large part of Lebanese culture, where each party tries to obtain as much as possible while giving up as little as possible. Managers in Lebanon’s industrial society largely have a disregard for the integrity of their employees as they are seen as competitors for many of the same resources. These stipulations lead to a bargaining situation where the managers, having the advantage, try to acquire as much as possible and give up as little as possible. Without recognition of the laborers, via an effective union, managers will continue their disregard for strikers’ requests. Khalaf also proposes that conflicts occur because of an ample supply of unskilled workers in the community; thus if the strikers are not given recognition as a viable entity, managerial staffs often dismiss requests by threatening to hire, or actually hiring, new staff. The author argues that the discontent may stem from an overall discontent with industrial society, as it denies many a sense of independence, in addition to causing the previously described stipulations.
LINDSEY HOUGHTON University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Khalaf, Samir G. Industrial Conflict in Lebanon. Human Organization Spring, 1965 Vol. 24(1):25-33.
This article deals with the instability and conflict of labor-management relations in Lebanon from 1955 to 1963. The author cites different types of worker protests and explains why these protests have been generally ineffective in securing workers’ rights. Khalaf goes on to give suggestions for what could be done to make protests more effective and decrease conflict.
Khalaf argues that the labor force is ill-equipped to effectively organize and stand up for worker rights. First, he deals with statistics available about labor disputes and grievances. He finds that, over the period studied, more grievances were filed by management than by workers. He concludes that this is due to the weak bargaining position and unorganized state of labor. The article next deals with the issue of strikes. Khalaf finds that strikes in the period studied were largely economic, and argues that they remained economic in nature because such basic needs must be met before workers can even attempt organizational arrangement. In the sixth-six strikes studied, none concluded meeting all demands of the workers. However, the author cites a cultural tendency for bargaining which presumes that the workers purposely asked for more change than they realistically thought would occur. Next, Khalaf examines the workers’ bargaining power through the use of unions. He finds that the management generally feels hostile about unionization, and regards the practice as subversive. Because of this low level of acceptance by the management, only about twenty percent of the labor force is unionized. Another hurdle in the process of unionization is the excess supply of unskilled workers. In short, if the workers in place strike and ask for more benefits and better working conditions, they are easily replaced. Khalaf also cites lack of strong working class leaders, as well as a laissez-faire government attitude toward business in hindering the formation of effective unions, and thus increasing labor-management industrial conflict.
LEAH BENDLIN University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Klausner, Samuel Z. Interspecies Relations and Technological Development: A Call for Research. Human Organization, 1965 Vol.24(2):111-115.
Klausner seeks to understand the relationships between man & animal and man & insect both in industrial and pre-industrial societies. He states that this relationship is the key to understanding the differences in the values and norms of these two types of societies. Past studies have focused on the surface conflicts, those that occur between man and man, when they should have been focusing on the underlying conflicts, the differences in the way in which societies view their relationships between man and animal.
Klausner describes the findings of ethnologists as they study the shift from a hunting society to a pastoral or agricultural society. In hunting societies, man has developed a relationship with his animal in which they perform as a unit and work together. Pastoral and agricultural societies use their animals as laborers, for transportation, and for various products, such as fur and leather. However, they are still able to domesticate and develop a cooperative relationship between themselves and their animals. Industrialization changes the social role of animals. They become simply pets, whereas pre-industrial societies still see their animals as members of society who interact with the other human members.
Klausner explains that man-animal relationships in industrialized societies can be divided into two separate categories: instrumental and expressive. Instrumental relationships involve the animal being used for labor, food, reaching economic goals, and as subjects of science. Man does not identify with his animals in an instrumental relationship. Expressive relationships involve the animal being a pet, a symbol of religion, a partner in sports competitions, and sometimes even a sexual partner. Man does identify with his animals in an expressive relationship. However, sometimes a man-animal relationship can be considered both instrumental and expressive. Klausner gives man-insect relationships special mention as the sharpest contrast between industrial and pre-industrial societies.
Klausner states that the shift from pre-industrial to industrial society is actually a shift from an expressive man-animal relationship to an instrumental relationship. This is not because of the introduction of the machine, since pre-industrial societies have, and make use of, simple machines. Rather, the shift is a result of discovering new sources of power to run these machines, such as mechanical, electrical, and thermal power. This can be seen by the physical displacement of animals in industrial societies, such as our own.
Klausner suggests a study in order to help better understand man-animal relationships in pre-industrial societies. This study would involve finding cultures at different stages of industrialization and approaching each on a sociological and psychological level. That is to say, to find out the different norms for regulating the man-animal relationship and also how animal imagery affects man’s desire to learn machine technology and his entrepreneurial drive. Klausner strives to answer these questions through reviewing the culture’s animal folklore, both in oral and literary traditions, and to supplement this with interviews with people from all stages of industrialization.
NICOLE HAHN University of Wisconsin – Madison (Larry Nesper)
Kuroda, Yasumasa. Agencies of Political Socialization and Political Change: Political Orientation of Japanese Law Students. Human Organization,1965 Vol.24:328-331.
Kuroda begins his article with a brief overview of the history and relevance of the findings of the American studies on the correlation between the political affiliation of a student and that of their parents. The general findings of these studies being: in a stable, non-changing political system, the major source of political socialization is the family. Yasumasa then applies this logic to the opposite side of the political system, hypothesizing that in the case of a rapidly changing, or unstable, political system, the parents’ political affiliation and party involvement would have little to no influence on that of their student.
Kuroda tested his hypothesis by polling law students at the University of Kyoto, the University of Tokyo, and the Legal Training Institute. These Universities were chosen for their history of producing political leaders, variety of political beliefs, and law programs. His questions covered three basic categories: political affiliation, political involvement (whether apolitical, spectator, or political), and the correlation between the students’ answers and their parents.
Kuroda’s findings are presented in this article in a standard table form, displaying the percentages of students and parents per category. His first table touches on the relationship between the political involvement of students and their parents. It shows there is no significant relationship between the political involvement of the students and their parents. The relationship is neither negative nor positive, although there is a slight correlation between those students whose parents were involved in politics to wish to go into politics.
Table 2 displays the relationship between preference of political party between parents and students. Again there is not a significant correlation between the two, however, there does seem to be some correlation between students who have no particular party preference and those of their parents. The results of this particular poll raise certain questions about the generational effects of a rapidly changing political system ( i.e. Does type of government in place at the time of first political involvement play a significant role?).
Finally, in Table 3, Kuroda combines these two graphs into one displaying the correlation between political involvement and party preference. Table 3 identifies that “having no specific party preference is not a good indicator of political involvement” (p330), this eliminates the problem found in Table 2, and benefits his hypothesis that a parent’s political preference has little to no influence on a students political preference or involvement in an unstable political system. Unfortunately, the question of why there is a positive correlation between political party preference of the students and that of their parents.
For the most part, this data will be of benefit to the hypothesis that political affiliation and involvement of students in an unstable political system will not be highly influence, thus not the same as, that of their parents. This questions the source of the influence on students in changing political environments’ views, whether it is a generational influence or an organizational, and questions the effects on political variation during stabilization of a political environment.
HALEY ROE University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper).
Langenderfer, Harold Q.. The Egyptian Executives: A Study in Conflict. Human Organization 1965 Vol.24:89-95
In 1952, Egypt experienced a political revolution followed by an economic revolution in 1962. The revolutions were accompanied by a cultural movement which reformed beliefs and attitudes of Egyptian society. In 1961, the United Arab Republic (UAR) decreed all private enterprises to enter into a socialist society. All large industries would be owned by the government. The goal of the new socialist government was to redistribute the wealth of the society more equitably. This act would therefore create a higher standard of living for the majority. The government would achieve success in running these industries by appointing managers to run them. Langerenderfer address the issue of the institutional and personal barriers that are inhibiting the manager’s ability to improve and accelerate economic development. If economic development ceases, the standard of living cannot
The evidence Langenderfer provides for explanation of the lag in economic development lies within the barriers that effect management. The first barrier is, “The lack of guiding principles and clear objectives.” At the formation of public companies, the government offered no assignment of responsibility to the managers running the industry. There was much confusion over which organizations are responsible for certain policies. Because of this chaotic organization of responsibility, the opportunity for growth was deterred. National objectives for industries were needed to continue economic progress.
Secondly, “The bureaucratic nature of the government superstructure,” needs to be reformed to permit successful management. The bureaucrat does not seem to understand the problems of the business executive. The executive management skills are developing much faster than the public administration. The public administration is also a one-way link of communication. It is a delegation over the executive managers. Langenderfer suggests a two-way form of communication, so the executives may know what problems managers may be experiencing.
Thirdly, “(t)he lack of criteria for evaluating performance,” causes barriers that impede effective management. The government believes the intelligent workers do not need incentives to work. Their intellect should allow them to realize that they should do their best for the, “general welfare of the country.” The problem in lies that there is no actual proof the workers feel this way. If they don’t, they will not work as hard, therefore not improving the economic development of the country.
Langenderfer makes the argument clear, certain barriers need to be breached before the standard of living in Egypt has the opportunity to improve. If not, the economy will come to a standstill and no progress can be made.
SARAH D. GANTZ University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Levy, Jerrold E. Navajo Suicide Human Organization, Vol. 24: 308-318
Jerrold Levy looks closely at increasing Navajo suicide rates, making links between the data he has collected and the behaviors he has studied within the Navajo culture. To try and understand the motivation for this particular people, he looks at age, marital status, method, location, level of acculturation and the consequences of suicide in their culture in terms of their understanding of the spiritual world and shame within the community. Levy notes that his data may be affected by the fact that until the 1950s, the Navajo groups he studied did not see any reason to report suicides to the U.S. government, giving him a small sample size. The suicide rate is increasing for Navajos, but this may just be part of the overall trend nationally. He hints at his theory that the acculturative process may play a large role in the stresses of these people and therefore a cause of the increased suicide rate.
Levy begins by looking at the overwhelming fact that nationally the male to female ratio of suicide victims is 4:1. In the Navajo groups he studied, however, the ratio is approximately 13:1. This extreme difference leads him to say that the stresses of the community and family structure appear to fall mostly on the men. This makes more sense when he explains that the Navajo have a matrilineal descent system and matrilocal residence patterns which suggest that it is easier for the female to cope with integration. When looking at age in combination with sex, we see that the young male bears the brunt of stress in balancing his economic responsibility with his unstable role in integration.
When looking at method, motive and the role of alcohol, Levy concludes that these suicides are mostly impulsive and the “result of spontaneous eruptions of violent emotions.” He notes that only one victim dressed up and only one victim left a note. He sees the growing accessibility to alcohol as an explanation for the increase in suicides because of the way alcohol can intensify preexisting insecurities, leading to encouraging impulsive actions.
When looking next, as Levy does, at the belief system of the Navajos, one can find conflict in Levy’s proposals. He emphasizes the impulsive nature of these Navajo suicides but then describes the impact of their belief system on the actual act of suicide and there is a definite conflict. Most of the suicides occur away from the home because of the belief that seeing a dead body can be very harmful spiritually and physically. This belief is sometimes used as revenge on one’s enemies, by committing the act where they are sure to find the body. The evidence of the thought going into these beliefs shows that sometimes the Navajo is in fact not impulsive at all in their suicide but very thoughtful of the consequences of their death. This is reflected in Levy’s report of their external moral system. They only see something as wrong if it negatively affects the outer world. This externalization of their morals is reflected in Levy’s observations of shame instead of guilt.
Levy makes the interesting observation that where the suicides rates were the highest, was also where there were the smallest reservations, surrounded by white communities. This is consistent with his theory that the economic and acculturational stresses of the young male cause him to lead the suicide rate. Levy also observes that most of the causes sited stemmed from conflicts within the family. He says that this is a new pattern emerging from the disintegration of the traditional Navajo social organization.
A problem I found with Levy’s article was the broad generalization that the “Navajo personality” is by nature moody, therefore making the impulsive nature of their suicides logical. I found this quite surprising, that an anthropologist would make such a sweeping generalization about a people even after studying them. I understood his saying that he saw a pattern of impulsiveness in the suicides he found record of, but to then make the next leap of saying that this is a characteristic of the Navajo personality was a little too much of a jump for me, and seemed a little disrespectful of the Navajo people as well. I found this especially odd when there is also the conflict within the article of his claim of impulsiveness and the planned nature of some of the suicides in regards to their belief system of the danger of spirits.
CARRIE RICHGELS University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Liberman, Robert. Personal Influence in the Use of Mental Health Resources. Human Organization, 1965 Vo.24:231-235.
The article by Liberman addresses the question of who influences a person to choose to seek mental health resources and also the question of what the attributes of an influencee-influential relationship are. These questions are addressed due to the same type of relationship manifesting itself in other situations such as voting behavior, marketing, fashion and everyday social affairs.
In order to investigate these questions, Liberman conducted an initial interview to assess who was responsible for the decision to seek help from the community. The person responsible was looked at to determine what their status was, including age, sex, marital status, church attendance, religion, socioeconomic status gregariousness, residential mobility and prior experience with mental disease. Liberman then generates percentages through statistical analysis, which show how the patient is related to the person who influenced him. Many patterns are observed across the board, which predict what type of people will influence certain others.
Another statistical analysis was conducted to look at the likeness between the influencee and the influencer. This analysis looked at the same criteria that were looked at when grouping the influencers in the previous analysis. The final statistic revealed the tendency for decision-makers to have as their influentials individuals of the same attribute subgroup.
Much of the data revealed what the hypothesis had predicted, which was that personal influences can have an effect on the decision to seek help and on the decision of what type of help to seek. Non-significant relationships were discussed and analyzed by Liberman.
STEPHANIE MILLAR University of Wisconsin – Madison (Professor Larry Nesper)
Lopata, Helena Znaniecki. The Secondary Features of a Primary Relationship. Human Organization, 1965. Vol.24(2):116-123.
Through interviews with American housewives of varying age and urbanism, Lopata endeavors to disprove the existence of the exclusively primary relation. Making the assumption that there is no better ground for testing than the American husband-wife relationship, Lopata attempts to prove that both the male and female expect utilitarian, duty-specific obligations from their spouse, and therefore are not examples of a purely emotion based primary relationship.
Lopata first carefully defines both primary and secondary relationships. A primary relation is most simply phrased as one whose goal is the relationship itself. The ambition of such a relationship is pleasure, and not gains derived from cooperative labor. A primary relative is judged by personality, a secondary relative is judged by performance; A primary relation is between persons, a secondary relation is between role performers.
In American society, the husband-wife relationship is regarded as the most primary of all relationships. With reference to other cultures, American matrimony is deemed more romantic or companionate and less institutional. Furthermore, based on the research of others, the “woman” is a proven “primary relations-oriented personality”. Thus, if a true primary relationship does exist, the bond between a young American housewife and her husband is promising ground for research.
The interviewees consisted of two groups of women from separate studies: 299 young suburban housewives interviewed in 1956 and 323 urban wives interviewed in 1962. The suburban wives averaged 32.59 years of age and had on average 2.32 offspring aged 6.23 years. All were full-time housewives with pre-high-school-age children. The urbanites, in contrast, had a higher average age (49) and likewise had older children (23.6). A number of these wives worked, and the family income was distributed over a greater range than that of the suburbanites. It is important to note that the urbanites were part of a separate study and do not represent a scientifically selected sample. Instead, the primary importance of the urbanite study seems to be helping to raise patterns and cycles in the responses in the suburbanites.
Both sets of women were asked: “What are the most important roles of a woman, in order of importance?” Perhaps surprisingly, only 62 percent even listed the role of wife in any ranking. Furthermore, only 33 percent ranked it first in importance. When later asked the parallel question:“What are the roles (in order of their importance) of the man of the family?” women overwhelmingly responded “breadwinner” or “provider” (87 percent). 65 percent listed the role of father and only 46 percent listed the role of husband. Interestingly, interviewees ranked “provider” as the primary male role even more frequently than they did “mother” as the primary female role. By ranking the fulfillment of duties and obligations more often and higher in importance, the women reveal strong secondary aspects in the relationship; They focus more on what each role does rather than what they are. To further demonstrate the secondary nature of the marriage, few women expressed any interest in how the “bread” was “won”. The husband’s profession is assumed to represent some important aspect of his life and therefore ought to be something of interest to a primary relative. Consequently, the wives seem focused more on segmented role-fulfillment than on multi-leveled personal relation. According to the author, “the number of women who talk of the total personality of their husbands, who stress primary-relation obligations to them, and who see marriage in terms of diffused obligations, is proportionally insignificant according to the study”.
The fundamental conclusion of the study is that American marriages, which in this society are regarded as the most primary of all relations, were not ranked as being of primary importance by 61 percent of the older urban and 72 percent of the younger suburban women studied. Put most simply, “if the relation between a man and a wife had no other function beyond the enjoyment of each other’s personality, we would call it a purely primary relation. All evidence points to the fact that the interaction between them is dependant also upon other functions and standards of judgment”.
ANDY HOOGENAKKER University of Wisconsin – Madison (Larry Nesper)
Lopreato, Joseph. How Would You Like to Be a Peasant? Human Organization, Vol. 24: 298-307
Joseph Lopreato of the University of Connecticut, Storrs, focuses his writing on the plight of the South Italian peasant farmer and its subsequent migration to the industrialized North and emigration abroad since World War II. He uses a variety of statistics and first and second-hand accounts from actual peasants and various other studies to support his claim that the South Italian peasant has been the victim of a rapidly developing industrial economy and has been the subject of degradation and humiliation by the middle and upper classes, and is therefore becoming aware of his humble state while being tempted by the promise of economic and social equality in other parts of Italy and the world.
Lopreato begins his argument by laying out a possible cause for the peasant’s emigration. He states that the accelerating transformation of Italian society from a mostly agricultural, semi-feudal social system to a more industrialized, urban type after WWII has contributed to the internal migration of South Italian peasants to the industrialized northern cities.
He then continues, for much of the body of the article, to illustrate the poverty and social injustice experienced by the South Italian peasant, and how they have been lead to migrate either to the North or abroad. Lopreato presents the peasant as a grim character—doomed to work small tracts of ill-suited land and slave long hours in poor health conditions simply to make ends meet. They must often indebt themselves to landlords and if they were lucky enough to be accepted, to banks as well. Lopreato shows the peasant as a pessimist who can trust nobody, not even his own family, and whose family life is grudgingly based on a system of domination-submission.
Lopreato’s main argument states that the massive internal migrations and emigrations of the South Italian peasant to industrialized centers should be attributed to the peasant’s life of poverty, low self-esteem, the contempt shown to him, and his distrust for neighbors and government. Lopreato proposes that if the Italian government wishes to prevent such migration, it must develop a positive image for the southern farmer, create an infrastructure of education and services in the South, and succeed in halting the humiliation and disrespect shown to the peasant.
TRAVIS REINKE University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Maretzki, Thomas. Transition Training: A Theoretical Approach. Human Organization, 1965. Vol.24: 128-134
The focus of Maretzki’s article is on the use of ‘transitional training’ in the University of Hawaii Peace Corps Training Project started in 1961. The background information consists of the uniquely American approach of training volunteers to be better prepared to go to foreign places, behave properly, and avoid culture shock. The question that Maretzki seeks to answer is within the framework of transitional training, how much transformation is necessary and/or desirable in the trainees for volunteering and how can this be achieved.
As stated in the title, Maretzki’s approach to this subject is theoretical and is supported by no hard data. His information comes from two separate training sites in Hawaii for the Peace Corps: Hilo and Waipio Valley. He stresses the nature of these sites (Waipio in particular) as being designed to prepare trainees for experiences/situations they may encounter in Southeast Asia by providing similar (and unfamiliar) living conditions. Maretzki points out, however, that the sites lack replication of the complete cultural environment, but also that it is not necessary.
Maretzki attempts to explain this by describing what he calls “transcultural learning,” which is akin to acculturation and is affected by pre-existing personality traits. Acknowledging that these processes are dependent upon personality and involve psychological transformations, the question then becomes how much transformation is necessary and desirable. In the case of the Peace Corps, the goal is for trainees to understand and adapt to new cultures, but not to adopt them. According to Maretzki, the way to achieve this is described as the “mazeway” style. He does not elaborate effectively on this however. He also includes a section on the selection process of the program and its importance because of the effects that prior enculturation and personality traits have on one’s ability to adapt and understand new cultures.
Maretzki’s main points, though poorly illustrated, are that the goal of transitional training is to utilize “mazeway” style learning and give trainees experience in an unknown environment to better enable transcultural learning and adjustment to novel situations without becoming dependent upon structure and preparatory knowledge.
SARAH R HUSTON University of Wisconsin – Madison (Larry Nesper)
Messing, Simon. Application of Health Questionnaires to Pre-Urban Communities in a Developed Country. Human Organization, 1965 Vol.24:365-373.
This article is not an argumentative essay or study. Rather, this article documents a study that was in progress at the time. In this article, Simon Messing writes about natives from the rural and small towns in the countries of both Ethiopia and Somalia. By 1961, these sparsely populated areas were indeed developed but were lacking in proper health care. Messing asserts that before health care services can be given, a study must first be done in order to establish a baseline for the native beliefs and home health care practices. Beginning in 1961, Messing assembled a team consisting of public health physicians, nurses, public health engineers, statisticians, epidemiologists and a social anthropologist to chart the waters.
Messing’s team devised several methods of carrying out their research. One method was a questionnaire called Schedule V, which is showcased in this article. Schedule V measures the attitudes of the general public regarding health practices. A random sample (one-third) from a previous medical sample population was used, amounting to about 500 people. The questionnaire was set up like an interview. Schedule V is composed of direct, non-sensitive questions at first, and later the questions become somewhat open-ended and broach more sensitive topics.
The better half of this article is devoted to Messing writing about the specific problems and solutions encountered while using Schedule V with participants. Problems arise from certain questions or blanks on Schedule V. A paragraph is devoted to each problem. An example of a ‘blank’ would be, “Head of Household.” Messing writes that if the wife was separated from her husband because he deserted her (the Ethiopian answer to divorce), the wife would be considered the head of that particular household. Other problems were encountered when trying to classify the more and less desirable living areas, how to differently label occupation and major source of income, etc. Health related questions included whether or not soap was used (and how frequently), how one contracts contagious disease, how to treat eye diseases, etc. Messing also includes, at the end of the article, Summary V in its entirety.
Messing does make a few conclusions. He writes that one must have a basic ethnographic understanding before designing a statistically reliable questionnaire such as Schedule V, especially if doing research in developing countries. He writes that records of the problems and solutions should be meticulously kept. Messing asserts that research in anthropology would gain more prestige if anthropological workers would stick strictly to these rules.
HEATHER THOMPSON University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Miller, Robert. High Altitude Mountaineering, Cash Economy, and the Sherpa. Human Organization, 1965 Vol. 24: 244-249.
The subject of this article is the importance of mountaineering to the Sherpa and European climbers, and how this occupation had positive effects on their own culture as well as western culture. The Sherpa are known for their hardiness and carrying abilities which made them excel in their occupation.
First, the author writes about Khumbu, the home of many Sherpas, where before the 1930s, life was difficult. The inhabitants of Khumbu farmed their land to produce wheat, potatoes and barley as their main agriculture, with some farming of corn and radishes. They also herded yak and had small trade with Tibetans. The flow of Sherpas to Darjeeling increased during the 1930s. These mountaineering expeditions brought wealth to their economy, as well as the expansion of Namche Bazaar into an international market. Sherpa mountaineering also effected the Khumbu homeland by changing a subsistence economy to an economy that relied more upon a supplementary cash income.
Secondly, the author writes about Sherpa mountaineering and the importance to many Europeans. Many expeditions, including various Everest expeditions, were with the accompaniment of Sherpas. Many Sherpas were becoming specialized and trained by institutions, such as the Himalayan Mountaineering Institution. Since the Sherpa were becoming well known in their specialization and recognition, many Europeans thought that the Sherpa were too highly praised. This resulted in Europeans choosing inexperienced and untrained Khumbu porters for expeditions. This in effect made the Sherpa portering occupation unstable. The Sherpa depend greatly on climbing expeditions, funds from institutions and the closing of Nepal to climbers controlled by the Nepalese government.
Lastly, the author writes about the benefits the Sherpa gained from mountaineering. They experienced many innovations such as the operation of a cook-stove and a camera. Some were taught to build igloos during a Swiss expedition. They also had the opportunity to diversify their outlook by traveling. Many were able to speak numerous languages as a result. These became a great value to Khumbu life.
In this article, the author concludes that the cultural contacts and changes have transformed the Sherpa into an important part of the western culture in addition to having many benefits to the Khumbu life as well.
This article is as informative and I found it very easy to read and understand.
MALIA PATTERSON University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Myherhoff, Barbara G., and Larson, William R. The Doctor as a Culture Hero: The Routinization of Charisma. Human Organization (1965) Vol.24: 188-192.
According to Myerhoff & Larson, the purpose of the article is to determine the nature and function of two kinds of popular heroes, the “cultural hero” and the “charismatic hero”. The authors then explore the role of the medical physician compared to the role of a hero, as well as the role mass media has in portraying these icons.
Myerhoff and Larson differentiate between the types of heroes, and discuss the physician’s role as “curer” associated to the beliefs heroes have on the public. The authors argue that the authority of a charismatic hero comes from the follower’s belief in his or her hero’s unique and personal powers. Daily access to and familiarity with the charismatic healer leads to the humanization of the hero, and results in loss of belief.
The physician’s function is likened to the “hero” much like the historic “cowboy” was seen as a hero. The broader idea explored is that the doctor is losing charisma, and becoming more of a cultural hero rather than a charismatic healer. The implications are applied to the doctor-patient relationship (or practitioner-client relationship).
A key concept in curing techniques, according to Myerhoff & Larson, is the importance of the patient-doctor relationship. Having a physical social distance between doctor and patient is crucial to the patient’s treatment. In the face of increasing inventions in technological science, the doctor may be loosing “effectiveness” in curing the patient.
Myerhoff & Larson assert that mass media plays on the emphasis of a doctor’s scientific skills rather than his unique healing abilities. The authors note that depiction of science rather than the healer by the mass media helps increase the doctor’s loss of “charisma”, which potentially impairs the “effectiveness” of the physician’s curing abilities in society.
The authors also mention the role of magic and medicine with healing, and viewed them synonymously with religion and the secular and sacred.
Myerhoff & Larson incorporate citations from other sources such as, journals, newspapers, and magazines, into their article to support their argument. The article is very thought provoking and can be applied to events of the present day.
ANGELA KUSSOW, University of Wisconsin (Larry Nesper).
Nader, Laura. Communication Between Village and City in the Modern Middle East. Human Organization, 1965. Vol.24 (1):18-24.
In this article, Nader discusses the mode by which villagers and city dwellers communicate and exchange culture in the Middle East. This article is organized into three different sections describing the two motives for communication. Within each section, examples are given of the type of communication employed.
The first motivation for communication described is that initiated by a national or foreign group. Communication initiated by an outside group occurs in two ways. First, contact among groups and cultural exchange can be caused by the resettlement of groups for military, environmental, or governmental purposes. Educational institutions can also initiate communication. Differences in education cause a greater separation of economic groups as well as social groups based on the level of education to which they have access. Although greater education may allow the subject to find a better job and move from the country to a city, it also prevents the subject from accepting many manual jobs found in their native village that they regard as beneath their abilities.
Individuals themselves cause the second type of communication according to Nader. Communication is continued by the familial relationships between city dwellers and villagers. Urbanites often return to their native village for visits or for vacation continuing communication and cultural exchange. The recent trend of urbanites owning property in their native village encourages lines of communication between groups of people.
Lastly, the resolution of conflicts promotes communication cue to the use of third or outside parties to resolve conflicts. This causes individuals to leave their home to search for guidance and discuss topics of conflict with those outside their village or city.
CATHERINE BECK University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Nader, Laura. Communication Between Village and City in the Modern Middle East. Human Organization, 1965 Vol. 24 (1): 18-24.
The author’s intention is to investigate and describe the means by which those living in Middle Eastern cities exchange culture or technologies with those who live on farms and in villages surrounding those cities. Nader has broken the article into three different categories: the role of national and foreign interest groups, the role of individual interests, and the role of conflict-resolving procedures. Each of these categories pertains to one of two different motives and sources of communication, which she has prescribed.
According to Nader, there is communication which arises from national or foreign interest, and communication which is grounded in personal or individual interests. The former is a unidirectional process, beginning in urban areas and flowing outward to villages. The latter is bidirectional; it can go from villager to urbanite and vice versa.
National and foreign interest groups that spawn communication are of two sorts: educational systems and resettlement. Within national and foreign interest groups, educational systems are most clearly responsible for producing the dichotomy of urbanite or villager. Those who are better educated are more apt to find work in a city. After their schooling, some return to their villages or their urban culture, only to struggle to apply their new knowledge. In light of their education, the manual labor found in villages no longer seems meaningful. Conversely, those working in cities may find themselves not educated enough to become well employed.
Secondly, and still within national and foreign interest groups is resettlement. Resettlement is subdivided by Nader into environmental, governmental, or military. Few people ever move from the village they grew up in. Resettlement is a break from tradition and promotes cultural exchange.
Personal and individual interests are widely responsible for the bidirectional flow of culture between cities and villages. Those who move from village to city retain their family ties in their original village. Those same people often choose to summer in their village homes. The exchange between villager and urbanite is quite evident here.
Conflicts are cited as having an integral role in communication. To seek resolution, those from cities and villages alike must seek council in the form of a politically affluent or eloquently speaking third party. Leaving the confines of the home and finding this third party in hopes of support greatly increases cultural interaction.
ELLIOTT SIEBERS University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Prins, A. H. The Modified Syrian Schooner: Problem Formulation in Maritime Change.Human Organization, 1965. Vol. 24:34-42
In this article A. H. Prins sets out to investigate the complex issue of the modification of schooners. The location of Prins’ investigation is the Levant, in which, unlike most places worldwide, schooners have not been wiped out by more recent technology. Prins argues that the dominance of modified schooners in the Levant is due to changes in the trade industry.
The author supports this argument with a thorough evaluation of the roughly 28 schooners he observed. He gathered a large amount of schooner statistical data, including data on boat characteristics such as ship nationality, the length of mast, frequency of removal of the main mast, boat weight, and boat capacity. He also gathered cargo information including amount of animal cargo carried, shipment distance, and import versus export statistics.
Using this statistical data, the author then employs economic reasoning to support his claim. He identifies two primary factors that determine changes in schooner physical properties, as well as how schooners are used. These primary factors are cargo type and trade patterns. Prins notes that while auxiliary engines, rig size reduction, and hull widening are present in all modified schooners, these modifications vary in degree. Prins states that modifications are dependent upon the covariance of the identified primary factors, and that these factors are not independent of one another. For any given hull, there is an optimal relation between the type of trade, the rigging, and the engine use. Using these economic principals, Prins looks at specific regions within the Levant, to analyze the gathered schooner statistics. Prins uses economic reason along with data to explain why schooner modification occurred in the twentieth century.
For example, the change from carrying perishable fruit to carrying onions, potatoes, and live animals, means that speed is not as necessary. This leads to an increase in hull size, sacrificing speed but increasing cargo capacity.
BRIAN ROLNICK University of Wisconsin-Madison (Dr. Larry Nesper)
Prins, A.H.J. The Modified Syrian Schooner: Problem Formulation in Maritime Change. Human Organization, 1965. Vol. 24, No. 1:34-42.
The problem that Prins addresses in this article can be stated as, “What factor or factors are responsible for changes in Arab maritime culture in the eastern Mediterranean, specifically in the area including southern Turkey, Lebanon, Syria, Palestine (until the late 1940s), and Egypt, from the late 19th century to the mid-20th century?” He focuses upon the “Syrian schooner,” a type of ship that uses a combination of sails and diesel engines, in demonstrating and explaining these changes. His goal is to quantify both historical and field data so that these may be used in formulas, which may be useful as a guide both for collecting further maritime data and for the clear presentation of such data.
Prins’ basic argument is that, while a direct, causal relationship between trade-type and ship-design can be made, a more accurate (and quantifiable) process requires the recognition that multiple variables are involved. For example, the kind of cargo that a schooner carries (and therefore the specific market in which it participates, such as livestock, grain, or fresh produce) does not solely determine either the size of the hull or the power souce that is used (i.e., whether primarily sail or primarily diesel engine). He determines that four major variables are involved: rigging; engine power; hull capacity; and type of trade. Prins also believes that each of these variables can be reduced to quantifiable, monetary units, which can then be formulated and graphed.
Using maritime terminology, Prins begins by describing and comparing the structures of past and existing ships used in the eastern Mediterranean. He relies upon both historical data and upon his personal observation of schooners in Beirut Harbor during 1962 and 1963, presenting this evidence textually. He then speculates upon the origins of schooner design and how indigenous and non-indigenous influences impacted schooner development. This is followed by a categorization of current design modifications, by their occurrence on observed ships, as either “occasional,” “often,” or “almost always.” The final set of data is presented in five separate tables that quantify, respectively, trade by schooner in Beirut Harbor from 1953 to 1963, differences in cargo type by flag as observed in 1963, the number of ships of different nationalities observed in 1961 and 1963, the average capacity of Syrian schooners versus schooners of other nationalities, and the amounts of schooner trade in 1961 between Beirut Harbor and other ports in the Levant.
Prins concludes that the four major factors determining schooner structural modifications are co-variable and interdependent. By quantifying each variable in monetary units, he is able to graphically represent them in terms of profit and costs. Hull type is invariable, while the other three factors (rigging, engine power, and type of trade) are variable. He concludes with a hypothesis: “For any given hull there is an optimal relation . . . between running costs and gross earnings which varies with the type of trade and with the formula for rig and engine.” In other words, ship owners seek to maximize their net profits by either altering the variables of rigging and engine power, or by changing to a trade with a different freight market.
DAVID BERBERICK University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Roney, James G. A Case Study of Administrative Structure in a Health Department. Human Organization, 1965. Vol. 24: 346-352.
In this article, one follows along on the author’s journey in discovering the structure of a health department. Roney writes how he discovered very quickly that the structure of the department was dependent upon relationships, especially those of advice and orders. Through devising a survey that everyone in the department completed, he gained access to the proportions of those advice/order relationships. In an attempt to make sense of the information that he gained, he sorted the results of his survey into eight different categories of relationships.
Roney refers to these categories as Type 1, Type 2, Type 3 etc. Type 1 is when one person gives advice or orders to another, and the other acknowledges it. Type 2 is when one person says they give advice or orders to another, but the other does not acknowledge it. Type 3 is when one person says that they are the recipient of advice or orders from another, but the other does not acknowledge it. Type 4 is when two people that should have a relationship do not acknowledge it. Type 5 is when a person says that he both gives and receives orders and or advice from another, but the other does not acknowledge it. Type 6 is when both people claim to give advice or orders to the other, but neither acknowledges being the recipient. Type 7 is when both people say that they receive orders or advice from the other, but neither acknowledges giving the advice or orders. Type 8 is when a person says that they are the recipient of orders and advice from another, but the other says that he receives but does not give orders or advice.
Roney continues to analyze the results by formulating a mathematical way of ranking the relationships based on who gives the orders or advice and who receives it. This mathematically simple, yet slightly cognitively confusing way of ranking is made clear through the use of tables and charts. At this point, Roney has a picture forming of the complexities of the relationships in his health department. But Roney takes it a step further by doing individual profiles on a few of the participants, including: the director of nursing, two of the senior staff nurses, the environmental health director, the supervising sanitarian, and the senior staff sanitarian. Even then, the results all seem to fit into his categories and further support his point that is becoming exceedingly clear.
Towards the end of the article, Roney finally allows the reader to see the conclusion that he has made. He compares the official structure of what the organization of advice or orders is supposed to look like, with the complex and intricate structure that is in use. It becomes obvious that the structure actually in use, in the health department, is far the official structure of advice and order relationships.
JACQUELYN SARATORE University of Wisconsin- Madison (Larry Nesper).
Roy, Donald F. The Role of the Researcher in the Study of Social Conflict: A Theory of Protective Distortion of Response. Human Organization 1965 Vol. 24: 262-271.
Donald F. Roy, an anthropologist from Duke University, tells of his less than successful fieldwork among textile workers in the southern United States. From his apparently failed fieldwork, though, Roy is able to gain some insight into what exactly went wrong and how, in the future, to deal with these problems when researching social conflict.
Conducting his research among textile workers and regarding their decision to join or not to join a union, Roy found himself faced with varying degrees of participation by respondents. Most were unwilling to honestly answer any of Roy’s inquiries regarding union organization and recruiting in the area. The only reliable responses Roy received were from terminated or near terminated employees of the textile factory.
To account for these inconsistencies, Roy proposes a “theory of protective distortion of response,” in which, particular variables affect the willingness of an individual to honestly respond in an interview. These variables involve the researcher, the individual respondents, as well as the intergroup relationships. Roy calls upon his personal experiences, both successes and failures, to account for the failure of fieldwork at the textile factory. The particular variables are carefully and thoroughly explained and the relationships between each are plotted to illustrate interdependency. In Roy’s fieldwork, for instance, failure resulted from a combination of a researcher’s threatening presence, antiunion sentiments in the south and various other interrelated variables. Roy proposes that all of these components, when given a value, will equal the degree to which an individual will distort his/her response to protect their interests.
Donald F. Roy’s empirical model for distortion of response in social conflict proposes effectiveness in understanding the interconnected variables of fieldwork. This model is particularly useful for understanding the degree of influence a given circumstance may have upon the goals of work in the field.
SARAH L. PETERSON University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Safa, Helen Icken. The Female-Based Household in Public Housing: A Case Study in Puerto Rico. Human Organization, 1965 Vol. 24: 135-139.
In Helen Icken Safa’s article, “The Female-Based Household in Public Housing: A Case Study in Puerto Rico,” Safa focuses on the increasing number of families headed by females. Using studies conducted in Puerto Rico on female-based households in that territory’s public housing system, Safa argues that two main factors lead to female-based households: the structure of a matrifocal society, in which the man’s power is based solely on his ability to bring in money and economically support the family; and the modern welfare state, including public housing, with its replacement of the man as an economic provider. Essentially, Safa argues, a matrifocal society allows for the replacement of the man for a public institution. Thus, the number of female-based households increase, especially in the context of public housing.
Safa uses as evidence studies she and others conducted in Puerto Rico. She examines the family composition in shanty towns versus that in public housing. She also analyzes the structures of families living in public housing and each different structure’s rates of applying for, residing in and moving out of public housing. She then shows the comparison between the total annual income at the time of entry into public housing of families with a change in the head of its household and families with no change in the head of its household.
This evidence shows that the welfare state does indeed sustain and encourage female-based households. Safa finds that female-based households are much more prevalent in public housing than in shanty towns, and that female-based households are more often admitted into public housing than households with male heads, single people or married couples without children. The move-out rates for female-based households are also much lower than the other aforementioned family structures. Safa also found that households that were living in public housing at the time that the household head changed from male to female saw very little change in income. These households’ incomes were comparable to those of stable male-based households, acting as more reinforcement for female-based households to take advantage of public housing. Female-based households occurred when the female head was young, on average 20 to 30 years old. Safa argues that the welfare state gave these women a type of economic support that is alternative to a husband. Overall, Safa finds much supporting evidence for her argument that the welfare state gives women a source of economic support other than a man in a matrifocal society, and this substitution leads to the increase of female-based households, particularly in public housing.
JESSICA JONES University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Schwab, William B. Looking Backward: An Appraisal of Two Field Trips. Human Organization Winter, 1965 Vol.25(4):373-380.
The methodology of anthropological fieldwork is examined here in terms of what improvements can be made upon existing methods. More specifically addressed is the idea of standardization of research, data collection, and data presentation. Emphasis is put on the idea that there cannot be so much standardization so as to lose the feeling, meaning, and true purpose of anthropology as a science. This idea is illustrated by comparing and contrasting two methods used in the author’s own field work in the African towns of Gwelo and Oshogbo and analysis of both situations.
One of the methods used is traditional participant observation, and the other, in this case, is the sample survey. Participant observation was employed as the basis of anthropological fieldwork and the understanding of another culture. However, because this method is not perfect, it can leave various gaps in the theories and data of the research depending on the situation. One such example from the article is the fact that the subjects limited their actions and behaviors in the presence of the ethnographer and there was a clear sense of discomfort by his presence. In these cases, another method, such as the sample survey, can be employed to supplement the data and help present a more complete picture in the end product of the research.
As is to be expected in every ethnographic experience, each situation and the reaction of the society being studied varies. Therefore, one method for studying one society or culture cannot be applied exactly to the next. Schwab carefully analyzes and describes where in his studies the different methods were more or less effective and attributes them to possible sources for a better understanding while still pointing out that the combination of more than one method is, in the end, most effective. It is the idea that the sum is greater than its parts.
By employing participant observation, the traditional practice of ethnography and anthropology is retained and the discipline remains continuous. However, by employing the more systematic method of the sample survey and using statistics to comprehend the data, the research becomes fuller-bodied and may be seen as more valid in the eyes of others, particularly those outside the discipline.
MIRANDA WARREN University of Wisconsin – Madison (Larry Nesper)
Shepardson, Mary. Problems of the Navajo Tribal Courts in Transition. Human Organization, 1965 Vol. 24: 250-253.
This is a well-written article, but seemed to lack a formal argument upon which to base an understanding. The author seemed to have great understanding of the Navajo people and their judicial system, since it is so closely related to our own, or so it was presented in this article. What the author purports that our federal and state judicial systems have a sort of control over the tribal system, and simply tries to ask the question can these people accept our system of justice?
In this article, Mary Shepardson relays a lot of research that she has gathered. She documents the several stages that the Navajo courts went through up to this point. However, Shepardson never seems to argue for or against a side. She uses a lot of specific incidences to show that in some the court cases, the tribal system was the correct way, and in others the federal system was the correct way. I never got a clear indication what she wanted from the reader to gather from her research. She seemed to be almost too objective with her research that it led her astray from what she was intending to portray. At one point, she explains how our federal judicial system forced the tribal system to ban the execution of “witches” and giving them “medicine” instead. But, in the same paragraph she says that the tribal system is so influential within the Navajo community that the tried people are nagged or shamed into fulfilling the court’s orders.
Shepardson seems to contradict herself quite often in this article. I think that it was well written, and quite interesting to learn about something that takes place in our very own country that seems so foreign. But overall, I think that the point of the article is lost because Shepardson is being too objective and not focusing her efforts on trying to argue for or against the problem.
ANDY PEKOLL University of Wisconsin (Larry Nesper)
Shiloh, Ailon. A Case Study of Disease and Culture in Action: Leprosy Among the Hausa of Northern Nigeria. Human Organization, 1965 Vol.24:140-147.
Ailon Shiloh’s, “A Case Study of Disease and Culture in Action: Leprosy Among the Hausa of Northern Nigeria” concentrates on the culture clash and/or concurrence that surfaces when Western and local medicine combine. Shiloh stresses the fact that the two systems of medicine differ in many ways and an interaction of the two may be problematic for the Western practitioners, locals, and leprosy victims. The hypothesis of the article, however, states that if Western medicine is introduced in a correct and sensitive fashion, the outcome of the interaction should be of a positive nature.
Shiloh uses a case study done in Northern Nigeria, not as proof, but as support to the hypothesis. It is said in the article that a positive interaction between the two cultures is never guaranteed, but there is support that says it is possible. Shiloh first explores the differences in aetiology, treatments, and beliefs between Hausa and Western cultures. These ideas show the obvious reasons interactions are difficult.
Evidence of positive interaction is first expressed with the Christian missionaries in treating leprosy. As pointed out, there were problems at first including differences in religion. The Hausa consist of many Moslems who assume themselves superior to Christians. This alone creates hostility. There is also the belief that the white man takes the African away so that he may eat the African. This is an important point to show the fear that the Hausa felt towards the missionaries, making it difficult for the missionaries to treat the patients. The missionaries then worked with the Hausa in a way that was non-threatening to make them more comfortable. This supports the hypothesis by showing that even grave beliefs can be overcome if the Western culture is sensitive enough and willing to make the necessary changes.
Support is shown with the Northern Nigeria Governmental program working off of the missionary treatment centers. Once the government became involved and contributed to the leprosy cause, the number of patients under treatment leapt from 12,000 to 264,000. Western medicine and tactics proved itself worthy. The Hausa had seen the positive results of this different way of medicine and regardless of their personal beliefs and local tradition, people were willing to add to the old by accepting the new.
Situations are described in which the outcome would not be of a positive nature, to better support the point that if interaction is done thoughtfully, the interaction should be positive. Shiloh stresses that there must not be an attack or forced invasion of Western culture upon the receiving culture. Research must be done on the receiving culture to preemptively find points of possible conflict. It is also added that Western culture should try to make use of the local system of tradition and include some of their tactics. Though Shiloh states that additional investigations are necessary to further support the hypothesis, there is great evidence that interactions can be peaceful and positive if the Western practitioner introduces medicine in a way that promotes learning and adaptation.
JOANNA KAY University of Wisconsin, Madison (Larry Nesper)
Shuster, James. Bureaucratic Transition in Morocco. Human Organization 1965 Vol. 24(1):53-58.
In this case study, James Shuster describes the importance of the often overlooked aspect of civil bureaucracy in aiding the transition of Morocco from a French protectorate to an independent Arab state. Shuster uses the four characteristics of control, continuity, cohesion, and comprehensiveness to illustrate his argument. Prior to the French occupation, the Moroccan bureaucracy acted as the executive arm of the king, a duty that it reassumed after independence in 1956. Shuster argues that this tradition was naturally redeveloped, for the bureaucracy provided a cohesive force in a state divided along ethnic lines, especially between the Berbers and Arabs, and points to the importance of the cohesiveness of the civil governing institutions. The bureaucracy’s ability to crosscut the entire population also helps it to design programs for every facet of Moroccan life, thus maintaining control of any possible volatile situations. However, years of French rule did leave several problems for the new state and the emerging bureaucracy.
Morocco faced a shortage of trained administrators as well as modern universities. Most upper-level schools in Morocco were used to train Islamic scholars as well as foreign language experts, but few had programs to train people to run an independent country. This left a sizeable hole in the middle and upper levels of the Moroccan bureaucracy, forcing the government to turn back to France for help, in the form of administrators and teachers. In addition, French, rather than Arabic, was used in the civil bureaucracy under the protectorate, which hampered “Arabization” in the country. The use of French also created problems in the domestic ranks, for many Moroccans had been given senior positions based solely on how much time they spent working for the French, leaving them without much actual administrative ability. The newly trained subordinates, however, had better training, and internal conflict might be a potential future problem. Despite these problems, Shuster provides a final analysis of the positives of the Moroccan bureaucracy.
The development of Morocco’s educational institutes increased significantly after independence. Although still somewhat dependent on France for financial assistance, many more Moroccans are being trained for service in the bureaucracy. In addition, the various institutes have switched from the grandiose civil planning that dominated the French occupation to more efficient actions targeted at improving the economy. Government workers have also frozen their high salaries in order for the government to work with more capital. The bureaucracy has faced several challenges, such as the death of King Mohammed V and the first national elections, yet has succeeded on keeping control of the country and keeping the general populace pleased. The bureaucracy will continue to play an important role in Morocco’s transition from former colony to modern democracy. Shuster ends by stating that the study of bureaucracy is beneficial and necessary in order to understand the events of Middle Eastern Countries.
KRISTOPHER BURNITZK University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Terrill, William. “Management Organization and Methods in Turkey”. Human Organization, 1965. Vol. 24(2): pp.96-104.
William Terrill begins by addressing the overall question of why, despite the predictions that Turkey would be economically modernized beginning in the year 1923, Turkish citizens had still earned no per capita income by the year 1965. The author believes this problem is the badly orchestrated way in which Turkish citizens engage in the management process as an economic enterprise.
Terrill argues that the Turkish system of management, both of public and private institutions, is overly bureaucratic and lacks incentive to achieve. Management is rather a position of status endowed upon those with the proper connections. He argues that until the attitudes and practices involved in business management change, Turkey will not become as economically well advanced as the economists had predicted.
Terrill constructs his argument by laying out the elements critical to management success in the western economic system: elements of careful planning, structured organization, directing and coordinating of employees for maximum efficiency, and systematic control of all budgetary and accounting processes. He suggests these options as alternatives to fieldwork, which he states is not feasible in this case. Terrill poses questions about the status of these essential economic practices to top officials involved in Turkey’s economy and records their answers.
The main evidence Terrill uses to argue his points are quotations from experts, including surveys of current university students in management and their future goals. He also analyzes the current practices in the education system and their rigid structure, which he believes does not lead to training a creative manager who is willing to question established order and look for more efficient ways of conducting business. He addresses the high unemployment rate and explains the linkage to overly bureaucratic institutions as a means of trying to give people a job, even if it is low paying and inefficient.
Terrill’s overall structure is quite effective for arguing his point. After laying out the western concept of good management, then using evidence from Turkish officials to show how Turkey is not meeting these standards, he provides potential solutions to their problem. Terrill states that management needs to award jobs to the most qualified candidate based upon merit, rather than giving them out to those with connections or to people already in power. He also suggests the most fundamental area of change needs to be the structure of the Turkish educational system, such as encouraging young people to think, analyze, and communicate more effectively, rather than passively listening and memorizing information.
JENNIFER GULIG University of Wisconsin (Larry Nesper)
Thompson, Laura. Freedom and Culture. Human Organization, 1965 Vol. 24 (1):105-110.
Laura Thompson’s article, “Freedom and Culture,” addresses a profound and yet crippling dilemma; bringing to our attention a more pronounced understanding of the detrimental commitment and often times subconscious behavior attributed to our role in defining what is culture and how cultural restrictions have limited our possibilities of justifying then what is freedom. It appears through a scientific anthropological approach we can move past the superficial obligations and commitment placed upon society by higher social complexities and move towards a world more self-fulfilling, self-gratifying, and self-rewarding.
In a world which revolves around external contingencies, often superimposed, defining behavior and attitude as we know and seek fit, we create an approach known as “cultural determinism” (105). With a number of variations to this theory from Emile Durkheim’s social determinism to Ellsworth Huntington’s geographical determinism, we focus on the notion of “progress.”
Under what appears as ones social duty; warped and opposed practices place individuals under a social ladder, limiting freedom. It was seen during the 1930’s under Hitler and his Nazi regime, the pressure to conform without will and forecast a new way of life centered on this powered hierarchy. This was especially true for farmsteads known as Erbhofe, or entailed estates (106). These individuals with their inherited practices over marriage, status, and social hierarchy fell under serious capital exploitation. In doing so, ten percent of the lower-class individuals became part of the National Socialist Party and chaos in tradition emerged. Government ordered peasants to have a fixed market price and they claimed their entire annual yield minus only what was needed to survive on. Eventually government’s attempt to sabotage the “upper rung,” while improving the lower class succeeded and a long time chain of order levied out. For the first time, families that fell short prospered, while others hardly survived. However, in time, traditional culture broke through the barriers and found a way to ridicule government under their own terms, bringing back traditional ways of life (107).
Off the Pacific island, in pre-war Guam, in territory that has been in possession of the United States since the Spanish American War, another example penetrated the unaccepted development of social class by American naval colony. A predisposed class ranking led Guamanians to ridicule their own administrators. Yet, when Japanese Navy captured and occupied Guam during World War II, Guamanians turned to aid and serve The United States. These examples reiterate outside attempts and often victories in manipulating and altering culture. By doing so, freedom and what is desired as practiced versus controlled freedom is abolished. The pressure to conform and convert to higher authority eliminates a successful outlook on life, but clearly as these examples show, under intense situations of genocide and such seriousness core values and practices do prevail. Further experiments, testing, and research projects as in the Indian Education, Personality, and Administration Research, funded by the United States Office of Indian Affairs proves a tendency to retain tradition and harmony when American norms were heavily enforced upon communities of native status. For the scientific anthropologist, their job is to approach such situations and findings from an entirely new direction then just a mere superficial take on what evolves during a complex human event. They must take into account the entire surrounding to a cause and consider all of its components, large and small, before deciphering a set mind-frame.
Anthropologists like Carl Rogers, Erik H, Erickson, Alexander H. Leighton, and G.M Carstairs have all agreed on taking a much deeper approach to the examination of “our working hypotheses and concepts of culture” (108). “Culture-building” and “culture changing” and its ideas for why can be seen studied as early as 1913 by anthropologist Alexander Goldenweiser, whose practice he termed ”limited possibilities in the development and study of culture” (110) Freedom by definition has evolving possibilities and only when it is fully examined from every direction, do we, as a community, except all these opportunities. Accepting then such a concept may seem novice yes, but it has also imprisoned us for decades, if not millenniums Ultimately then, for mankind to enjoy maximum freedom, being in-rooted amongst individuality, community, separation, and even willing limitation, takes a revision of the Bill of Human Rights, as Thompson herself said.
The article by Laura Thompson starts with a strong intro discussing a universal problem, without a clear universal answer. She is able to back up her hypothesis through clear and precise examples and written illustrations of previous historical examples of such political and social phenomenons. She makes it easy to agree and conclude that while man does make himself, “man is a social organism, part of the phenomenological world, subject to the natural laws and processes which govern that world” (110).
CLARITY RANKING: 4
TARYN GUNKEL University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Thompson, Laura. Is Applied Anthropology Helping to Develop a Science of Man? 1965 Vol. 24: 277-287
In this article, Laura Thompson is concerned with the connection between applied anthropology and the science of man. She refutes the idea posed by earlier anthropologists that science can efficiently advance without necessity for applied anthropology. Thompson argues throughout the article that clinical anthropology, a subset of applied anthropology, does assist in the progression of science. The anthropologist can help develop science by assessing the dynamics of real life situations; focusing on human groups rather than individuals; being highly motivated; refining methods and theories; and providing insight on predictive behavior within a group. Applied anthropology is also useful in assessing a group’s response to a specific change enacted into a community.
Thompson presents her argument by, first, explaining how the focus of cultural anthropology has changed from being of a “museum-oriented” nature to one of solving problems. She exhibits this shift by examining and contrasting the models of two important anthropologists, Radcliffe-Brown and Malinowski. She prefers Malinowski’s approach to fieldwork because it “reflects and includes, rather obscures, ignores and excludes, the multidimensional nature of problems with which the successful clinical anthropologist must deal.” She believes the Radcliffe-Brown model overly concerns itself with academic problems, which do not aide in the science of man.
After establishing the purpose of the clinical anthropologist, Thompson explains how it can help develop the science of man. A successful clinical anthropologist will translate the community’s problem into a scientific problem, taking into accounts the situational limits and potentials. Use of the scientific method, she argues, forces the anthropologist to consider actual problems that affect the community.
The author then points to several examples in which administrators from numerous disciplines are already referring to the works of anthropologists to inform their decisions. Thompson points out many groups, traditionally individual-oriented, such as some subsets of psychology and medicine, now understand the importance of cultural factors affecting their work.
Furthermore, Thompson adds, the success of the clinical anthropologist’s work is determined by empirical testing, which can be beneficial to correcting scientific methods and refining theories. In sum, Thompson argues applied anthropology can positively affect the science of man by improving methods, creating a framework for hypothesis testing, predicting behaviors with more precision, all of which lead to resolving practical problems and advancing the science of man.
BRITTANY REED University of Wisconsin Madison (Larry Nesper)
Wallman, Sandra. The Communication of Measurement in Basutoland. Human Organization Spring, 1965 Vol. 24(3) 236-243.
The article entitled, “The Communication of Measurement in Basutoland” deals with a clash of two different cultures. The English and the Sesotho people are engaging in commerce involving fields held by the Sesotho. With no uniform measurement scale for acreage or any other measurement including time, distance, and weights and measures communication on many fronts was stalled. The article deals with personal reactions of the Sesotho through four stages on attempted “conversion” to the English system of measurement of area. It also addresses the concept of time, relating it to attempts by humanitarian English groups to educate the Sesotho on proper food care and cooking. Weights and measure is dealt with in terms of trade with the English.
The author is attempting to show the difficulties inherent in bringing a culture that does not have a basis in uniform concepts of measurement into a system thought of as common by the English. In doing so, she argues that information can be shared between the “technicians” of both cultures. However, the common peasant will need explanations directly relating to their cultural customs. For example, in talking about why a certain plant needed to have its seeds placed 8 inches apart, the “teaching” Englishman, had to explain to the Sesotho farmer that room must be allowed for the hoe to travel through. It was not until this pragmatic example was used that the Sesotho man was willing to attempt to use the English system. Many other examples of cross-cultural misunderstanding are shown in the English’s use of pictorial posters that the Sesotho cannot comprehend. Arguments are made with descriptions of these posters and descriptions of English measurements contrasted with direct quotes from the peasants.
The author lays out quite convincingly the case she is making. The main defense of her argument is in the customs that are adapted. She describes situations like the garden spacing example above that prove her point. The peasant seems to understand what the English are saying and why they are doing what they are, only after practical cultural use is displayed to him. She also makes an argument for going into a situation with an understanding that your view is not necessarily the universal one it seems. Communication of technical ideas can only be accomplished with cross-cultural understanding and a lot bit of communication and explanation. Without making any claims towards which system is better, the author shows that technical ideas thought of as common in western societies, will need to translated into pragmatic examples in order to allow for communication between traders and peasants. She does display at the end of her article how this loose system is subject to exploitation by the English, however no mention of an alternative is presented.
JONATHAN NOOK University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Williams, Herbert H. and Judith R. Williams. The Extended Family as a Vehicle of Culture Change. Human Organization, 1965 Vol. 24 (1): 59-64.
The Williams and Williams article investigates the extended family structure of the Lebanese Haouch people. The authors’ basic argument is that the extended family assemblage of the Haouch people is a “functional rather than residential unit (60),” and therefore plays a large role in Lebanese cultural changes, yet they remain intact. The authors investigate this topic as they study the Haouch people in the larger context of Lebanese and Middle Eastern society.
Much like other rural Lebanese communities, the Haouch live in adobe brick houses with earthen roofs. Surrounded by modernity in all directions, they lack electricity. They rely largely on farming the adjacent fertile fields. Despite being a rural community, the Haouch village connects to the Beirut-Damascus highway, which allows the Haouch villagers to make increasingly frequent trips to the city of Beirut.
The developmental sequence of most Haouch families is standard. The authors elaborate on the family structure, including marrying practices and the continuing extension of the families. Men farm the nearby fields, while women attend to household chores, but rarely leave their village. Overall, the extended family remains intact because of the strength of extended family bonds.
The authors assert that these aspects of Haouch life are constants. To argue the main claim that Haouch extended family facilitates cultural change, the authors illustrate the Haouch family structure, then proceed to the ways the family structure changes economic development, emigration, and education. The authors state, “what does seem clear is that in this context of extreme poverty and isolation, the functioning extended family facilitates economic development” (62).
The main point regarding emigration is that males generally emigrate more often than females. When this happens, a new father figure takes over the responsibility of the family for the one who emigrated. The authors imply that the Haouch extended family works to safeguard against large cultural changes, like fatherless families.
Lastly, the authors investigate education in the extended family. Educating the young Haouch members is a matter of prestige, and reserved mostly for boys. However, because most of the Haouch are desperately poor, certain wealthier lineages claim most educational advancement. In their final example, the authors contend that emigration and education improve economic standing within the Haouch community.
The authors successfully maintain two points throughout this article. The first assertion is that the Haouch extended family remains functionally intact, no matter the distance separating members. The second point investigates the extended family’s cohesion due to cultural changes, like economics and education. The authors credit these arguments with facts about the Haouch community that they sampled both in 1950 and in 1964. Using testimonies from individual families and comparative statistics from 1950 to 1964, the authors prove the Haouch family to be a viable, enduring entity, despite cultural changes like economics, emigration, and education.
SARAH CATAROZZOLI University of Wisconsin—Madison (Larry Nesper).
Willner, Dorothy. Politics and Change in Israel: The Case of Land Settlement. Human Organization 1965 Vol.24:65-72.
It is noted by Willner in this article that the ideological values of Zionism in Jewish Palestine were deeply integrated into the political institutions of the region along party lines, and that the integration continued shortly after the inception of the nation of Israel after World War II. However, developments in the country in the early 1950s created a shift away from this ideological influence along party lines. Willner cites author Nadav Safran as suggesting that the shift has been largely due to the massive immigration of Jews from Muslim lands, as well as a shift from Zionist party politics to one of Israeli nationalistic identification. Here Willner agrees, and expands on the reasons for political change by attributing it to the influx of immigrants and their early political activity, as well as the practices of administrators and public agency members in regards to the influx. She gives several examples of how the shift manifested, and chose to use the land settlement program as an illustration of the shift.
The land settlement program’s objective was to create new villages and to expand agricultural productivity as a means of subsistence for the new communities. As immigrants poured into the country during the 1950s, the land settlement program had been politicized along Jewish Zionistic lines that were split into two groups–the Mapai, or Israeli Labor Party, and the Hapoel Ha-Mizrachi, the religious labor political party. Both wanted affiliations with as many immigrant villages as possible. For one group of Moroccan Jewish immigrants who had been recruited by the Mapai, it seemed more suitable to be affiliated with the Hapoel Ha-Mizrachi, the party with a deeper ideological association. This created many problems, including a need to change school instructions and the split of the ethnic group into two villages. In this case, the immigrants were immediately thrust into political activity. The land settlement officials demonstrated Israeli nationalistic views in handling the issues presented by the immigrants, rather than siding along party lines. Several other examples of how immigration and party politics complicated and pulled the focus away from ideology are also mentioned.
As settlers began to understand the advantages of playing party politics to their favor, ideology no longer played a large role. The land settlement program officials would also support the shift away from ideologically integrated politics by pointing out the benefits of conformity to the settlers. It was apparent to the land settlement office that they often had to cope with the inadequacies of a system that, having been created before the influx of immigrants, was no longer suitable. In turn, the settlers used political manipulation to gain representation. Willner believes that although the ideological values influenced the creation of the Jewish state, the political climate may lead to integration of a culturally diverse nation.
CHRIS COON University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)
Wolff, Robert J. Modern Medicine and Traditional Culture: Confrontation on the Malay Peninsula. Human Organization, 1964. Vol.24:339-345.
The author is concerned with how foreign culture and ideals are introduced into developing nations that strive to institute Western-modeled civil services. More specifically, Robert J. Wolff examines the governmental initiative of the Malayan Peninsula to incorporate modern medicine into the rural Malaya subculture. By way of examples from the Malay village that illustrate the peculiar manner in which the benefits of Western medicine are availed, Wolff contends that it is essential to reinforce the Western notions of causality and disease to ensure that Western medicine is exploited to its fullest potential.
Wolff attempts to elucidate several of the inherent problems of interjecting Western medical practices into the paradoxical Malay culture. The author’s approach begins with an insightful description of the historical background, contemporary social structure and lifestyle, and cultural dynamics of the Malays. Of particular interest are the unifying principles concerning the totality of cultural heritage and harmonious living that underscore the nature of the Malays’ reception of modern medicine. As a society that is able to reconcile the seemingly incompatible medley of foreign and indigenous cultural contributions, the Malay people have proved able, through a tentative and gradual process, to selectively incorporate the fruits of Western medicine without disturbing their eclectic and somewhat ambivalent understanding of disease and treatment.
The varying Malay concepts of illness, which have demonstrated themselves to be impervious to the assumptions that accompany Western medical tools and techniques, are evinced by the author’s use of examples relating to inoculations and midwifery. Here Wolff emphasizes how, with the cholera immunizations, the villager members readily accepted the drug regimens and appreciated their efficacy to a degree, but still maintained their own attitudes about the causes of the disease. Similarly, although pregnant women have the opportunity to take advantage of the government-trained midwives, who are widely recognized as more skilled than traditional midwives, there appears to be no obvious preference for the former. With harmony as one of the guiding tenets of Malay culture, Malays are amenable to new methods of healing, but at the same time, they are determined to prevent novel approaches to health from supplanting the established customs. Wolff argues that when a superior system of medical treatment is initiated into developing countries, as exemplified by Malaya, it is important that the ideas underlying Western medical innovations not be neglected. The utmost effectiveness of the newly introduced forms of treatment depends on the extent to which the population is knowledgeable of the Western notions of causation and illness.
ROBIN RUSSELL University of Wisconsin-Madison (Larry Nesper)