Anthropological Linguistics: An Introduction by William Foley PDF

By William Foley

ISBN-10: 0631151222

ISBN-13: 9780631151227

It starts off from a theoretical point of view of either language and tradition as conventionalised varieties of positioned perform and makes use of this as a unifying framework to hide the complete diversity of issues in general handled less than the rubric of language and tradition.

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Acknowledging the help anthropology had received from "the psychoanalytic school," he suggested in the last paragraph of Sex and Repression that "it would be a great pity" if psychoanalysts "refused to collaborate, to accept what is offered in good faith from a field where, after all, they cannot be at home" (1927a:238). As it happened, the most important early attempt at such domestication-Roheim's researches in Australia-was carried on in rather doctrinaire Freudian terms; the development of a more flexible collaborative approach was a slightly later contribution of neo-Freudians in the United States (Wallace 1983:159-61, 199; cf.

By emphasizing the "libidinous nature" of primitive man, had "given the right foundation to primitive psychology" (296). Distinguishing between the psychological, the biological, and the sociological aspect of Freudian thought, Malinowski largely accepted the first, was somewhat critical of the second, and saw the third as a field still untouched (save for some suggestive hints in J. c. Flugel's Psycho-Analytic Study of the Family [1921)). Although he presented his contribution as simply a sociological "Introduction" and "Epilogue" to the "psychological treatment of the nuclear complex," Malinowski's goal was quite ambitious: it was in fact no less than to confront "the main task of psycho-analytic theory," by showing how the formation of the "nuclear complex" would vary with the varying "constitution of the family" in different forms of society (294-95), as well as within the various social strata of our own society (300).

Rivers would not follow Freud on the primacy of the sexual motive, and he had a much more optimistic view of the role of instinct in human evolution. But although he tended to interpret the dream work in rather immediate problem-solving terms, he was very much influenced by Freud's Traumdeutung, and by April 1918 had made his own attempt to show how such processes as condensation and displacement were at work in the myths and rituals of "savage peoples" (Rivers 1917bj see also 1920j 1923). By that time, Seligman, who had joined Rivers in wartime psychiatric work, had sent Malinowski a "short account of dreams" (presumably Rivers' "Dreams and Primitive Culture") and a book on "insanity from the modern point of view" (unnamed), encouraging him to collect dreams from his Trobriand informants (MY: CGS/BM 12/2/18j see also B.

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Anthropological Linguistics: An Introduction by William Foley


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