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Delimiting Anthropology: Occasional Inquiries and Reflectionsby George W., Jr. Stocking
Synopses & Reviews
Delimiting Anthropology makes available sixteen essays from the influential career of George W. Stocking, Jr., the worlds preeminent historian of anthropology. The essays are grouped in four quartets, echoing the major phases of Stockings own research over four decades. In his introductory comments he places each essay in the context of his entire body of work.
The first quartet focuses on the work of Franz Boas and the emergence of "Boasian Culturalism." In the second set of essays Stocking addresses the careers of three British "evolutionaries"—Lord Kames; Sir E. B. Tylor; and Sir James G. Frazer—tracking the development of cultural evolutionary thought from its origins in the Scottish Enlightenment through its early twentieth-century afterglow in Frazers The Golden Bough.
The third group of essays looks at institutions and national traditions, including British ethnography exemplified in the fieldwork manual Notes and Queries; the humanistic Parisian Société dEthnographie; the early tension at the Laboratory of Anthropology in Santa Fe between aspiring local amateur anthropologists and professionals from Eastern universities; and the history of ethnographic museums in the European tradition. In closing, Stocking offers reflections on major tendencies in anthropology from the eighteenth century to the present.
Book News Annotation:
All but two of the 16 essays have been previously published, and Stocking (anthropology, U. of Chicago) wrote all of them in response to invitations to give a lecture, present a paper at a scholarly meeting, contribute to an edited volume, introduce a volume he edited, or respond to a specific moment of archival discovery. They meander through Boasian culturalism, British evolutionaries, institutions in national traditions, and mesocosmic reflections.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
This title contains 16 essays by George W. Stocking Jr. They are grouped in four quartets, echoing the major phases of Stocking's own research over four decades. He focuses on "Boasian Culturalism", evolutionary thought, institutions and national traditions, and major tendencies in anthropology.
About the Author
George W. Stocking, Jr., is the Stein-Freiler Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus in the Department of Anthropology and the Committee on the Conceptual Foundations of Science at the University of Chicago. He is the author of many books, including Victorian Anthropology; After Tylor: British Social Anthropology, 18881951; and The Ethnographers Magic, and was the founder and long-time editor of the History of Anthropology series published by the University of Wisconsin Press. He has been awarded the Huxley Medal of the Royal Anthropological Institute and the Franz Boas Award for Exemplary Service by the American Anthropological Association.
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