Robert Redfield

Robert Redfield

Infobox Scientist
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birth_date = December 4, 1897
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death_date = death date and age|mf=yes|1958|10|16|1897|12|4
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nationality = American
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field = anthropologist ethnolinguist
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alma_mater = University of Chicago
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Robert Redfield (December 4, 1897 - October 16, 1958) was an American anthropologist and ethnolinguist. Redfield graduated from the University of Chicago, eventually with a JD from its law school and then a PhD in social anthropology, which he began to teach in 1927. After a series of published field studies from Mexican communities (Tepoztlán, Chan Kom), in 1953 he published "The Primitive World and its Transformation" and in 1956, "Peasant Society and Culture". Moving further into a broader synthesis of disciplines, Dr Redfield embraced a forum for interdisciplinary thought that included archeology, anthropological linguistics, physical anthropology, social anthropology, and ethnology.

Redfield wrote in 1955 about his own experience doing research in Latin America on peasants. As he did research, he realized he had been trained to treat the society as an isolated culture. However, he found people were involved with trade, and there were connections between villages and states. More than that, the village culture was not bounded. Beliefs and practices were not isolated. Redfield realized it did not make sense to study people as isolated units, but rather it would be better to understand a broader perspective. Traditionally, anthropologists studied folk ways in the "little tradition", taking into account broader civilization, the "great tradition".

Redfield and his wife Margaret are the parents of James M. Redfield, a professor of classics at the University of Chicago.

The papers of Robert Redfield and Margaret Redfield are located at the Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library.

Published works

Redfield's published works include:
* Redfield, Robert 1930 Tepoztlan, a Mexican village: A study in folk life Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
* Redfield, Robert 1948 Folk Cultures of the Yucatan. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
* Redfield, Robert 1954 [ The Role of Cities in Economic Development and Cultural Change] Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
* Redfield, Robert 1956 [ The little community.] Chicago: University of Chicago Press.


: cite book |author=aut|Rees, David (ed.) |year=2006 |title=The Ethnographic Moment: Correspondence of Robert Redfield and F.G. Freidmann |location=New Brunswick, NJ |publisher=Transaction Publishers |isbn=0-7658-0333-X |oclc=64390592: cite book |author=aut|Rubinstein, Robert A. (ed.) |year=2001 |title=Doing Fieldwork: The Correspondence of Robert Redfield and Sol Tax |others=with a foreword by Lisa Redfield Peattie ; and a new introduction by the editor|location=New Brunswick, NJ |publisher=Transaction Publishers |isbn=0-7658-0735-1 |oclc=47764364: cite book |author=aut|Wilcox, Clifford |year=2006 |title=Robert Redfield and the Development of American Anthropology |edition=Second edition, revised |location=Lanham, MD |publisher=Lexington Books |isbn=978-0-7391-1777-4 |oclc=76941853: cite book |author=aut|Wolf, Eric R. |authorlink=Eric Wolf |coauthors=and aut|Nathaniel Tarn |year=2004 |chapter=Robert Redfield |editor=Sydel Silverman (ed.)|title=Totems and Teachers: Key Figures in the History of Anthropology |edition=2nd edition |location=Walnut Creek, CA |publisher=AltaMira Press |pages=pp.177–198 |isbn=0-7591-0459-X |oclc=52373442

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