Sex and Temperament

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2009-10-09
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publications

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First published in 1935, Sex & Temperament is a fascinating and brilliant anthropological study of the intimate lives of three New Guinea tribes from infancy to adulthood. Focusing on the gentle, mountain-dwelling Arapesh, the fierce, cannibalistic Mundugumor, and the graceful headhunters of Tchambuli -- Mead advances the theory that many so-called masculine and feminine characteristics are not based on fundamental sex differences but reflect the cultural conditioning of different societies. This edition, prepared for the centennial of Mead's birth, features introductions by Helen Fisher and Mead's daughter, Mary Catherine Bateson. A precursor to Mead's illuminating Male & Female, Sex & Temperament lays the groundwork for her lifelong study of gender differences.

Author Biography

Margaret Mead (1901-1978) began her remarkable career when she visited Samoa at the age of twenty-three. She went on to become one of the most influential women of our time, publishing some forty works and serving as Curator of Ethnology at the American Museum of Natural History as well as president of major scientific associations. She was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom following her death in 1978

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements ix
Words for a New Century By Mary Catherine Bateson xiii
Introduction to the Perennial Edition: A Way of Seeing xvii
Preface to the 1950 Edition xxv
Preface to the 1963 Edition xxix
Introduction xxxi
part one the mountain-dwelling Arapesh 1(150)
Mountain Life
A Co-operative Society
The Birth of an Arapesh Child
Early Influences That Mould the Arapesh Personality
The Growth and Initiation of an Arapesh Boy
The Growth and Betrothal of an Arapesh Girl
Arapesh Marriage
The Arapesh Ideal and Those Who Deviate from It
part two the river-dwelling Mundugumor 151(68)
The Pace of Life in a Cannibal Tribe
The Structure of Mundugumor Society
The Development of the Individual Mundugumor
Youth and Marriage Among the Mundugumor
Deviants from the Mundugumor Ideal
part three the lake-dwelling Tchambuli 219(40)
The Pattern of Tchambuli Social Life
The Contrasting Roles of Tchambuli Men and Women
The Unplaced Tchambuli Man and Woman
part four the implication of these results 259(30)
The Standardisation of Sex-Temperament
The Deviant
Conclusion 289(12)
Index and Glossary 301

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