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Anthropology / History

 

Delimiting Anthropology
Occasional Inquiries and Reflections
George W. Stocking, Jr.


“It is George Stocking, more than anyone else, who has made the history of anthropology available to us.”—Daniel A. Segal, American Anthropologist

Delimiting Anthropology makes available sixteen essays from the influential career of George W. Stocking, Jr., the world’s preeminent historian of anthropology. The essays are grouped in four quartets, echoing the major phases of Stocking’s 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 cultural evolutionary thought from its origins in the Scottish Enlightenment through its early twentieth-century afterglow in Frazer’s 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 d'Ethnographie; 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.

George W. Stocking, Jr.George W. Stocking, Jr. (1928–2013) was 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 was the author of many books, including Victorian Anthropology; After Tylor: British Social Anthropology, 1888–1951; and The Ethnographer’s Magic, and was the founder and long-time editor of the History of Anthropology series published by the University of Wisconsin Press. He was awarded the Huxley Medal of the Royal Anthropological Institute and the Franz Boas Award for Exemplary Service by the American Anthropological Association. His most recent book with the University of Wisconsin Press is Glimpses into My Own Black Box: An Exercise in Self-Deconstruction.

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cover of Delimiting Anthropology is purple with a black and white drawing of a figure in a thinking pose.

November 2001

376 pp. 13 b/w photos
3 illustrations 6 x 9

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Cloth $45.00 s
ISBN 978-
0-299-17450-6
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“George Stocking is without rival as an historian of modern anthropology. He is trained as an historian, and he knows anthropologists from having lived among them. This collection is indispensable for any one or place concerned with the subject.”
Dell Hymes, editor of Reinventing Anthropology

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