Tristes tropiques

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Penguin Books, Aug 1, 1992 - History - 425 pages
18 Reviews
Tristes Tropiques was an immensely popular bestseller when it was first published in France in 1955. Claude Levi-Strauss's groundbreaking study of the societies of a number of Amazonian peoples is a cornerstone of structural anthropology and an exploration by the author of his own intellectual roots as a professor of philosophy in Brazil before the Second World War, as a Jewish exile from Nazi-occupied Europe, and later as a world-renowned academic (he taught at New York's New School for Social Research and was French cultural attache to the United States). Levi-Strauss's central journey leads from the Amazon basin through the dense upland jungles of Brazil. There, among the Amerindian tribes - the Caduveo, Bororo, Nambikwara, and Tupi-Kawahib - he found "a human society reduced to its most basic expression." Levi-Strauss's discussion of his fieldwork in Tristes Tropiques endures as a milestone of anthropology, but the book is also, in its brilliant diversions on other, more familiar cultures, a great work of literature, a vivid travelogue, and an engaging memoir - a demonstration of the marvelous mental agility of one of the century's most important thinkers. Presented here is the translation by John and Doreen Weightman of the complete text of the revised French edition of 1968, together with the original photographs and illustrations.

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His prose is luscious. - Goodreads
But really he's a master and a wonderful writer. - Goodreads
A travel writer of sorts who is really smart. - Goodreads

Review: Tristes Tropiques

User Review  - Shivaji Das - Goodreads

A legendary book from the legend, this travelogue came a decade before travel writing became more organized and formula driven. At most time, the book seems like sophisticated rambling, hinting at a ... Read full review

Review: Tristes Tropiques

User Review  - John E. Branch Jr. - Goodreads

[Review to come, sooner or later.] Read full review

Contents

TRANSLATORS NOTE II
11
PART ONE AN END TO JOURNEYING
15
Setting Out
17
Copyright

48 other sections not shown

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About the author (1992)

Claude Levi-Strauss, a French anthropologist, was the founder of structural anthropology. This theoretical position assumes that there are structural propensities in the human mind that lead unconsciously toward categorization of physical and social objects, hence such book titles as The Raw and the Cooked (1964) and such expositions of his work by others as The Unconscious in Culture and Elementary Structures Reconsidered. According to Levi-Strauss, the models of society that scholars create are often dual in nature:status-contract (Maine): Gemeinschaft-Gesellschaft (Tonnies); mechanical-organic solidarity (Durkheim); folk-urban (Redfield); universalism-particularism (Parsons); and local-cosmopolitan (Merton). Levi-Strauss's writings---some of which have been described by Clifford Geertz as "theoretical treatises set out as travelogues"---have been enormously influential throughout the scholarly world. George Steiner has described him, along with Freud (see also Vol. 5) and Marx (see also Vol. 4), as one of the major architects of the thought of our times.