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Title: Marginal anthropology? : rethinking Maria Czaplicka and the development of British anthropology from a material history perspective
Author: Vider, Jaanika
ISNI:       0000 0004 7430 5042
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2017
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This thesis explores the history of British anthropology at the start of the twentieth century through a biographical focus on Maria Antonina Czaplicka (1884-1921). The title calls into question the marginalisation of people and processes in the history of anthropology that do not explicitly contribute to the dominant lineage of British social anthropology and offers to add depth and nuance to the narrative through analysis stemming from material sources. I use Czaplicka as a case study to demonstrate how close attention to a seemingly marginal person with an incomplete and scattered archival record, can help formulate a clearer picture of what anthropology was and what it can thus become. My research contributes to the understanding and appreciation of women's involvement in anthropology, calls into question national borders of the discipline at this point in time, highlights the networks that nurtured it, and demonstrates the potential that museum collections have for an enriched understanding of the history of anthropology. I propose that history of anthropology is better understood through a planar approach that allows multiple parallel developments to exist together rather than envisaging a linear evolution towards a single definition of social anthropology. The project lays the groundwork for further research into the role that museums can have for understanding anthropological legacy and the possibilities they may have in creating fresh understandings of the contemporary world.
Supervisor: Morton, Christopher ; Peers, Laura Sponsor: Archimedes Foundation Kristjan Jaan Scholarship
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Museum anthropology ; History of anthropology ; Anthropology ; material anthropology ; Pitt Rivers Museum ; museum collections ; female fieldworker ; women anthropologist ; history of science