Redfield, Robert

Redfield, Robert, 1897–1958, American anthropologist and sociologist, b. Chicago, grad. Univ. of Chicago (B.A., 1920; Ph.D., 1928). He began teaching at the Univ. of Chicago in 1928, later becoming professor of anthropology and dean of the social science division. His field research in Mexico in the 1920s resulted in Tepoztlán (1930), a pioneer case study of a folk community that was the forerunner of a series of important studies. As research associate (1930–47) at the Carnegie Institution he directed anthropological investigations in Yucatán and Guatemala and evolved the concepts of folk society and folk culture, borrowing from sociological methods and concepts. He attempted a closer integration of the social sciences and the humanities. In his later years he turned increasingly to the comparative study of civilizations. His writings include The Folk Culture of Yucatán (1941), The Primitive World and Its Transformations (1953), and The Little Community (1955).

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