Adventures in the Stone Age: A New Guinea Diary (Paperback)

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The first publication of a charming fieldwork memoir by a giant of legal anthropology.
When Leopold Pospíšil first arrived in New Guinea in 1954 to investigate the legal systems of the local tribes, he was warned about the Kapauku, who reputedly had no laws. Skeptical of the idea that any society could exist without laws, Pospíšil immediately decided to live among and study the Kapauku. Learning the language and living as a participant-observer among them, Pospíšil discovered that the supposedly primitive society possessed laws, rules, and social structures that were as sophisticated as they were logical. Drawing on his research and experiences among the Kapauku—he would stay with them five times between 1954 and 1979—Pospíšil broke new ground in the field of legal anthropology, holding a professorship at Yale, serving as the anthropology curator of the Peabody Museum of Natural History, and publishing three books of scholarship on Kapauku law.

This memoir of Pospíšil’s experience is filled with charming anecdotes and thrilling stories of trials, travels, and war told with humor and humility and accompanied by a wealth of the author’s personal photos from the time.

About the Author

Leopold Pospíšil is a pioneer in the field of legal anthropology. Born in Czechoslovakia, he studied law at Charles University before emigrating to the United States in 1948. He was a professor of anthropology at Yale University from 1956–1983, and the anthropology curator of the Peabody Museum.

Jaroslav Jiřík is director of archaeology at the Museum of Prácheň in Písek, Czech Republic, and teaches archaeology courses at Charles University, Prague.

Martin Soukup is a cultural anthropologist specializing in Melanesia. He is an associate professor at Charles University.

Product Details
ISBN: 9788024647517
ISBN-10: 8024647516
Publisher: Karolinum Press, Charles University
Publication Date: March 7th, 2022
Pages: 350