Cannibals and Kings: Origins of Cultures

Cannibals and Kings: Origins of Cultures

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by Marvin Harris
     
 

In this brilliant and profound study the distinguished American anthropologist Marvin Harris shows how the endless varieties of cultural behavior — often so puzzling at first glance — can be explained as adaptations to particular ecological conditions. His aim is to account for the evolution of cultural forms as Darwin accounted for the evolution of

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Overview

In this brilliant and profound study the distinguished American anthropologist Marvin Harris shows how the endless varieties of cultural behavior — often so puzzling at first glance — can be explained as adaptations to particular ecological conditions. His aim is to account for the evolution of cultural forms as Darwin accounted for the evolution of biological forms: to show how cultures adopt their characteristic forms in response to changing ecological modes.

"[A] magisterial interpretation of the rise and fall of human cultures and societies."

— Robert Lekachman, Washington Post Book World

"Its persuasive arguments asserting the primacy of cultural rather than genetic or psychological factors in human life deserve the widest possible audience."

— Gloria Levitas The New Leader

"[An] original and...urgent theory about the nature of man and at the reason that human cultures take so many diverse shapes."

— The New Yorker

"Lively and controversial."

— I. Bernard Cohen, front page, The New York Times Book Review

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780679728498
Publisher:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
06/28/1991
Edition description:
Reissue
Pages:
368
Sales rank:
349,373
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 7.99(h) x 0.74(d)

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