By Claude Levi-Strauss
Lévi-Strauss applies his highbrow powers to the perennial challenge of incest, which he elucidates by way of the idea that of trade as formulated by means of Marcel Mauss in his recognized research of the present (Essai sur le don, 1925). He distinguishes uncomplicated modes of alternate which govern not just the traditional number of items and prone but additionally the move of ladies in marriage: those are “restricted” and “generalized” alternate. With a mass of ethnographic proof he demonstrates how the bold intricacy of marriage customs, comprising ethical and jural rules and associations (which seem to be basically arbitrary), may be noticeable as neighborhood and historic principles of exchange.
Charles Lévi-Strauss lines those ideas all through an unlimited diversity of easy societies, mainly in Australia and mainland Southeast Asia but additionally within the Americas, in Oceania, and in different components of the area. To this survey he provides prolonged sections at the nice civilizations of China and India. He maintains with a briefer attention of the passage from straightforward to complicated constructions, with specific connection with African societies, and concludes with a stimulating bankruptcy at the rules of kinship, alternate because the common foundation for marriage prohibitions, and the formal kin among the sexes as a part of a universe of communication.
Although a lot of the paintings is technical, inclusive of exact analyses of sorts of social association with which social anthropologists should be such a lot normal, it additionally comprises a lot that may be of curiosity to psychologists, linguists, and philosophers, and to all who're drawn to the prospect and the means of the structural research of human task. After the successes, additionally, of Lévi-Strauss’s next books—notably Structural Anthropology, Tristes Tropiques, Totemism, and The Savage Mind—this re-creation of the paintings which based his current remarkable attractiveness could have extra worth as one other technique of touch with one of many unique minds of this century.
The translation has been made by way of James Harle Bell and John Richard von Sturmer, of the college of latest England, Australia, and by means of Rodney Needham, of the college of Oxford. Dr. Needham additionally acted as common editor and provided the paintings with a brand new normal index. he's the translator of Lévi-Strauss’s Le Totemisme aujourd’hui and writer of Structure and Sentiment (1962) and various papers that have contributed to the popularity of Professor Lévi-Strauss’s paintings within the English-speaking world.
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The Elementary Structures of Kinship by Claude Levi-Strauss