Women of the Forest / Edition 30

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When it originally appeared, this groundbreaking ethnography was one of the first works to focus on gender in anthropology. The thirtieth anniversary edition of Women of the Forest reconfirms the book's importance for contemporary studies on gender and life in the Amazon. The book covers Yolanda and Robert Murphy's year of fieldwork among the Mundurucú people of Brazil in 1952. The Murphy's ethnographic analysis takes into account the historical, ecological, and cultural setting of the Mundurucú, including the mythology surrounding women, women's work and household life, marriage and child rearing, the effects of social change on the female role, sexual antagonism, and the means by which women compensate for their low social position.

The new foreword—written collectively by renowned anthropologists who were all students of the Murphys—is both a tribute to the Murphys and a critical reflection on the continued relevance of their work today.

Columbia University Press

The Murphy's detail an acute and intriguing battle of the sexes in which woman, though posessing more authority than men over practical matters of living, are depicted by the male-dominated culture as being subservient.

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Editorial Reviews

Margaret Mead
A salute to women's liberation in a portrait of a fascinating primitive people.
Ashley Montagu
Women of the Forest restores something of the balance that has been missing from conventional anthropology—an anthropology largely written by men—in giving this lucid account of the fundamental roles played by women in all societies. Very readable it sets the record straight for widely but wrongly held beliefs concerning many aspects of the roles of the sexes in all societies.
Ashley Montagu
Restores something of the balance that has been missing from conventional anthropology -an anthropology largely written by men -in giving this lucid account of the fundamental roles played by women in all societies. [I]t sets the record straight for widely but wrongly held beliefs concerning many aspects of the roles of the sexes in all soceities.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780231132336
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press
  • Publication date: 12/1/2004
  • Series: Columbia Classics in Anthropology Series
  • Edition description: 30th anniversary edition
  • Edition number: 30
  • Pages: 328
  • Sales rank: 909,997
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.22 (h) x 0.58 (d)

Meet the Author

Yolanda Murphy, previously on the faculty of Empire State College (SUNY), is retired. Robert F. Murphy was professor of anthropology at Columbia University. He was the author of many books and articles, including Headhunter's Heritage: Social and Economic Change Among the Mundurucú Indians and The Body Silent: The Different World of the Disabled, for which he won a Columbia University Lionel Trilling Award.R. Brian Ferguson, editor of the foreword, is professor of anthropology at Rutgers University—Newark. His books include The State, Identity, and Violence and Yanomami Warfare: A Political History.

Columbia University Press

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Table of Contents

Foreword to the Thirtieth Anniversary EditionPreface to the First EditionPreface to the Second Edition1. Woman's Day2. The Land and the People3. Beyond the Looking Glass4. Mundurucú Culture5. Women in Myth and Symbol6. The Woman's World7. Women and Married Life8. Women and Social Change9. Women and MenBibliographyIndex03/12/0405 Murphy 00_toc.doc: viivii

Columbia University Press

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