The Fateful Hoaxing of Margaret Mead: A Historical Analysis of Her Samoan Research

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Basic Books, Oct 8, 1999 - Social Science - 279 pages
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This is an investigation of the anthropologist Margaret Mead's research into the sexual practices of Samoan girls. By examining unpublished correspondence between Mead, her mentor Franz Boas and others, the author provides evidence to suggest that one of the most important anthropological studies of the 20th century was, in reality, based on an innocent joke by informants.

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About the author (1999)

Derek Freeman is a fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia. For over forty years he has been either a professoral fellow or a professor in the Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies in the Institute of Advanced Studies at the Australian National University. He has made a lifelong study of the people of Samoa and, during recent years, has done major historical research in Samoa, the Library of Congress, and elsewhere on Margaret Mead’s Samoan fieldwork of 1925-1926.

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