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Anthropology   By: (1866-1943)

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HOME UNIVERSITY LIBRARY OF MODERN KNOWLEDGE No. 37

Editors: HERBERT FISHER, M.A., F.B.A. PROF. GILBERT MURRAY, LITT.D., LL.D., F.B.A. PROF. J. ARTHUR THOMSON, M.A. PROF. WILLIAM T. BREWSTER, M.A.

A complete classified list of the volumes of THE HOME UNIVERSITY LIBRARY already published will be found at the end of this book .

ANTHROPOLOGY

BY R.R. MARETT, M.A.

READER IN SOCIAL ANTHROPOLOGY IN THE UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD AUTHOR OF "THE THRESHOLD OF RELIGION," ETC.

NEW YORK HENRY HOLT AND COMPANY

LONDON WILLIAMS AND NORGATE

CONTENTS

CHAP. PAGE I SCOPE OF ANTHROPOLOGY . . . 7

II ANTIQUITY OF MAN . . . . . 30

III RACE . . . . . . . . . . . 59

IV ENVIRONMENT . . . . . . . . 94

V LANGUAGE . . . . . . . . . 130

VI SOCIAL ORGANIZATION . . . . 152

VII LAW . . . . . . . . . . . . 181

VIII RELIGION . . . . . . . . . 204

IX MORALITY . . . . . . . . . 235

X MAN THE INDIVIDUAL . . . . 241

BIBLIOGRAPHY . . . . . . . 251

INDEX . . . . . . . . . . . 254

"Bone of our bone, and flesh of our flesh, are these half brutish prehistoric brothers. Girdled about with the immense darkness of this mysterious universe even as we are, they were born and died, suffered and struggled. Given over to fearful crime and passion, plunged in the blackest ignorance, preyed upon by hideous and grotesque delusions, yet steadfastly serving the profoundest of ideals in their fixed faith that existence in any form is better than non existence, they ever rescued triumphantly from the jaws of ever imminent destruction the torch of life which, thanks to them, now lights the world for us. How small, indeed, seem individual distinctions when we look back on these overwhelming numbers of human beings panting and straining under the pressure of that vital want! And how inessential in the eyes of God must be the small surplus of the individual's merit, swamped as it is in the vast ocean of the common merit of mankind, dumbly and undauntedly doing the fundamental duty, and living the heroic life! We grow humble and reverent as we contemplate the prodigious spectacle."

WILLIAM JAMES, in Human Immortality .

ANTHROPOLOGY

CHAPTER I SCOPE OF ANTHROPOLOGY

In this chapter I propose to say something, firstly, about the ideal scope of anthropology; secondly, about its ideal limitations; and, thirdly and lastly, about its actual relations to existing studies. In other words, I shall examine the extent of its claim, and then go on to examine how that claim, under modern conditions of science and education, is to be made good.

Firstly, then, what is the ideal scope of anthropology? Taken at its fullest and best, what ought it to comprise?

Anthropology is the whole history of man as fired and pervaded by the idea of evolution. Man in evolution that is the subject in its full reach. Anthropology studies man as he occurs at all known times. It studies him as he occurs in all known parts of the world. It studies him body and soul together as a bodily organism, subject to conditions operating in time and space, which bodily organism is in intimate relation with a soul life, also subject to those same conditions. Having an eye to such conditions from first to last, it seeks to plot out the general series of the changes, bodily and mental together, undergone by man in the course of his history. Its business is simply to describe. But, without exceeding the limits of its scope, it can and must proceed from the particular to the general; aiming at nothing less than a descriptive formula that shall sum up the whole series of changes in which the evolution of man consists.

That will do, perhaps, as a short account of the ideal scope of anthropology. Being short, it is bound to be rather formal and colourless. To put some body into it, however, it is necessary to breathe but a single word... Continue reading book >>




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