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The Gender of the Gift
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The Gender of the Gift: Problems with Women and Problems with Society in Melanesia

Marilyn Strathern


In this original synthesis on Melanesian scholarship, this book argues that gender relations have been a particular casualty of unexamined assumptions held by Western anthropologists and feminist scholars alike. The book treats with equal seriousness—and with equal good humor—the insights of Western social science, feminist politics, and ethnographic reporting, in order to rethink the representation of Melanesian social and cultural life. This makes this book one of the most sustained critiques of cross-cultural comparison that anthropology has seen, and one of its most spirited vindications.

Keywords: gender relations, Western social science, feminist politics, Melanesian social life, Melanesian cultural life, cross-cultural comparison

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 1988 Print ISBN-13: 9780520064232
Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012 DOI:10.1525/california/9780520064232.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Marilyn Strathern, author