The taboo, even more so than a law, spoke to what a society believed in its core: “Prohibiting certain forms of behavior...affirms what we hold most precious in our human relationships.” So, for example, a society that believes children should grow up free of the fear of sexual abuse in the home would institute an incest taboo.
How to deal with the problems, the social discord and dissonance, in the relations between women and men?
These are but a few of the questions to be confronted, exploring from differing perspectives the depth of the influence this tabooed topic has on the entire practice and production of anthropology.
A long-overdue text for all students and lecturers of anthropology, many post-fieldwork readers will find a resonance of issues they have previously faced (or tried to avoid) and those who are still to undertake fieldwork will find articles that refer to other kinds of personal and professional experience as well as providing invaluable preparations for coping in the field.
If you have access to the database Women and Social Movements in the United States, 1600-2000, you can read it in this collection of documents on second-wave activism and sexual harassment, curated by scholar Carrie N.
Editor's note: Are Chinese people becoming more open-minded when it comes to sex? How do Chinese teens gain their knowledge of issues related to sex? More than 50% of university students in China surveyed by one of my students (in one of the most interesting presentations I have had in my class in 10 years) had not been kissed by the age of 21.
Almost forty years later, the anthropologist's proposal seems earnest, quaint, and utterly impossible.
How common is sexual violence and intimidation in the field and why is its existence virtually unmentioned in anthropology?
The origin of the taboo against sexual intercourse while a woman is menstruating is probably lost to antiquity. Tapu means "be under ritual restriction, prohibited" in Maori.
Yet this taboo is found in every corner of the world - from Africa, to Polynesia, to the Plains Indians of North America, and so on. Today, the taboo against sexual intercourse with a menstruating woman is both prominent and debated in the Jewish, Islamic, and Hindu religious traditions, among others.
However we have not started the new year well and there are three worries that will dog us as the year progresses.
Menstrual blood is seen as dangerous, magical, and even sacred across many religions and cultures.
All questions of practical feasibility aside, the Mead idea intrigues as a thought experiment.