By Prof. Thomas Hylland Eriksen
This is often the 1st paintings to hide the whole historical past of social and cultural anthropology in one quantity. The authors offer a precis of the self-discipline within the 19th century, from the cultural theories of Herder, Morgna, and Tylor to the usually overlooked contributions of the German students of the interval. The paintings of early-twentieth century anthropologists corresponding to Boas and Malinowski within the US and Britain, and the sociology of Durkheim and Mauss in France, is tested. The ambiguous courting among anthropology and nationwide cultures--many of the discipline's founders have been migrants or Jews--also gets attention.
The vital concentration of the booklet is on issues attribute of put up First-World-War anthropology, from structural functionalism , through structuralism, to hermeneutics, cultural ecology, and discourse research. each one significant anthropologist is supplied with a tablet biography, and key controversies arecovered, reminiscent of the debates on alliance and descent versions of kinship, the puzzle of totmism, the issues of neo-Marxism and cultural ecology and the present battles over representations of the ''Other'' and deconstruction. This quantity offers a well timed, concise, and finished background of a tremendous highbrow self-discipline, in a fascinating and thought-provoking narrative that may entice scholars of the self-discipline around the world.
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Additional info for A History of Anthropology
In 1898, after only three active years, he suffered a mental breakdown, and was able to resume work only after another five years had passed. Immediately after his recovery, Weber wrote the book that many consider his finest: Die protestantische Ethik und der ‘Geist’ der Kapitalismus (1904–5; The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, 1976). This is a work of cultural and economic history which explores the roots of European modernity. Weber argues that the Calvinists (and other puritan Christians of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries) formulated a view of life that corresponded closely to the image of the perfect capitalist.
In the USA, Boas was the widely respected mentor and focal point of academic anthropology throughout the transition. In France, Mauss simply continued his uncle’s work after the latter’s death, though he emphasised the study of nonEuropean peoples to a greater extent than Durkheim had. It is sometimes claimed, not least by British social anthropologists, that Radcliffe-Brown and Malinowski more or less single-handedly created modern anthropology. This may have seemed to be the case at mid-century, when American anthropology had diverged out into many specialised strands and Mauss’s students had not yet made their mark.
The challenge posed by these concrete historians to the abstract histories of evolutionism, made diffusionism a truly radical innovation around the turn of the century. In the USA and Britain, evolutionism remained dominant, but scholars were becoming increasingly specialised, focusing on particular subfields, such as kinship, religion, magic or law. In France, meanwhile, a unique blend of sociology and anthropology was under way. Each of these research programmes, however, was seriously hampered by a lack of accurate and detailed data.