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Julian Haynes Steward

Steward, Julian Haynes, 1902–72, American anthropologist, b. Washington, D.C., grad. Cornell, 1925, Ph.D. Univ. of California, 1929. He taught at the Univ. of Michigan (1928–30), Columbia (1946–52), and the Univ. of Illinois (1952–72), as well as other universities. He conducted both archaeological and ethnographic studies. At the Smithsonian Institution he was anthropologist (1935–43) in the Bureau of American Ethnology, edited for the bureau the monumental Handbook of South American Indians (7 vol., 1946–59), and was director (1943–46) of the Institute of Social Anthropology. He advanced the concept of multilinear cultural evolution, according to which increases in cultural complexity occur in different ways in different societies; he also emphasized the importance of cultural ecology, the way in which adaptation to the environment promotes culture change. His research interests involved both traditional and modern societies. His writings include South American Culture (1949), Area Research, Theory and Practice (1950), Theory of Culture Change (1955), and The People of Puerto Rico: A Study in Social Anthropology (1956).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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