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Cows, Pigs, Wars, and Witches: The Riddles of Culture
     

Cows, Pigs, Wars, and Witches: The Riddles of Culture

4.2 9
by Marvin Harris
 

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One of America's leading anthropolgists offers solutions to the perplexing question of why people behave the way they do.

Why do Hindus worship cows? Why do Jews and Moslems refuse to eat pork? Why did so many people in post-medieval Europe believe in witches?

Marvin Harris answers these and other perplexing questions about human behavior, showing that

Overview

One of America's leading anthropolgists offers solutions to the perplexing question of why people behave the way they do.

Why do Hindus worship cows? Why do Jews and Moslems refuse to eat pork? Why did so many people in post-medieval Europe believe in witches?

Marvin Harris answers these and other perplexing questions about human behavior, showing that no matter how bizarre a people's behavior may seem, it always stems from identifiable and intelligble sources.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307801227
Publisher:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
07/13/2011
Sold by:
Random House
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
288
Sales rank:
445,775
File size:
2 MB

Meet the Author

Marvin Harris taught at Columbia University from 1953 and from 1963 to 1966 was Chairman of the Department of Anthropology.  He has lectured by invitation at most of the major colleges and universities in the United States. In addition to field work in Brazil, Mozambique, and Ecuador on the subjects of cross-cultural aspects of race and ethinic relations, the effects of colonialism, and problems of underdevelopment seen in ecological perspective, Harris pioneered in the use of videotape techniques in the study of family life in this country.

Author of several books, among them the influential Rise of Anthropological Theory: A History of Theories of Culture and the popoular undergraduate text Culture, Man and Nature: An Introduction to General Anthropology, Harris wrote frequently for Natural History magazine and was a frequent contributor to the professional journals, American Anthropologist and Current Anthropology.  His others books inlcue Cannibals and Kings and Cultural Materialism.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Cows, Pigs, Wars and Witches; The Riddles of Culture 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is camp
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Gets great concepts, but gets lost in his own subjective reasoning
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was okay.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cows, Pigs, War and Witches is a simple read for any beginner to cultural anthropology while being utterly engrossing at the same time! Marvin Harris explains cultural riddles in a very succinct and easily understandable manner, and in a way that captivates one's interest! I particularly love how he discusses Jesus and allows you to read an account of his life/crucifixion that is not readily available elsewhere. The way one chapter continues to support the next also makes for a fun read, however, you can read each chapter individually (out of sequential order) and it is just as enjoyable. This is a book to own and re-read over the years. It is full of interesting facts that explain historical questions and thoroughly fun to read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Whether you are a college student who is in an anthropology major or an idividual who is interested in why things are the way they are...this book by Marvin Harris is a great way to get started. I highly recommend this book and if reading it makes you want to learn more...give The Choking Doberman, The Vanishing Hitchhiker etc. a read...urban legends are an integral part of our cultural. Find out what a FOAF is and their importance in keeping urban legends alive. If you are tired of novels that have a paticular theme and the same type characters...read something that is not fiction and will educate, enlighten and entertain at the same time. A new world of interest is easily opened by starting out with Cows, Pigs, Wars and Witches!
Guest More than 1 year ago
A good place to initiate oneself with the study of human behaviour is with Marvin Harris. Easy to read and understand, as well as possessing a wonderful story-teller attitude, Marvin Harris may not always be correct yet is always well researched and logical to a fault. Sometimes the author's personal opinions get in the way towards the end. Great for all levels of interest, from novice to expert.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was assigned this book in my cultural anthropology course when I was at Penn State and I'm mighty glad I was. Harris makes a lot of sense, more sense than the old ways of thinking about culture, about who we are and why we do the things we do. He does not claim that his views are the 'be-all/end-all,' just that they are more logical than previous explanations of cultural standards, values, and ways of doing things. Well worth reading.