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Claude Levi-Strauss: The Formative Years

Overview

Levi-Strauss is one of the major intellectual figures of the twentieth century. His theory of structuralism has been influential not only in anthropology, but across the entire field of the humanities and social sciences. This book looks at the formative period of his career, from the 1940s to the early 1960s, where he attempts to define both his own place in anthropology and the place of anthropology in the wider context of the human sciences in France. Through a close reading of key texts, Christopher Johnson ...
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Overview

Levi-Strauss is one of the major intellectual figures of the twentieth century. His theory of structuralism has been influential not only in anthropology, but across the entire field of the humanities and social sciences. This book looks at the formative period of his career, from the 1940s to the early 1960s, where he attempts to define both his own place in anthropology and the place of anthropology in the wider context of the human sciences in France. Through a close reading of key texts, Christopher Johnson provides an introduction to important aspects of Levi-Strauss's thought, at the same time posing more general questions concerning the construction of theory and the different modes of conceptualization that inform theory. Johnson looks at the ideological and autobiographical dimensions of Levi-Strauss's work, and demonstrates how the impact of structuralism as an intellectual movement has clearly been greater than the sum of its parts.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'… lucid and comprehensive …'. The Times Higher Education Supplement
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521016674
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 3/1/2003
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 218
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.67 (d)

Meet the Author

CHRISTOPHER JOHNSON is Professor of French at the University of Nottingham.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements
List of abbreviations
Introduction: Before and after structuralism 1
1 The place of anthropology 12
2 The model of exchange 31
3 From kinship to myth 68
4 Structuralism and humanism 104
5 Anthropology and autobiography 148
Conclusion: The will to coherence 180
Bibliography 192
Index 203
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