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By R. Layton

The 1st textual content to deal with the contentious matters raised via the pursuit of anthropology and archaeology on the earth at the present time. Calls into query the conventional, occasionally tough courting among western students and the modern cultures and peoples they learn and will simply disturb.

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Smith considers that the value of skeletal evidence justifies control of indigenous skeletons by archaeologists, but Mulvaney distinguishes between ownership and study. Neither archaeologist addresses a set of issues which, to indigenous peoples, appear crucial: to what extent does archaeological theory itself embody subjective assumptions about cultural process? Have archaeologists’ presuppositions prevented them from correctly interpreting the response of indigenous peoples to colonial domination?

Newton at first thought in terms of a two-colour system comprising blue and red (Westfall 1980, p. 161); by 1666 he had identified five—red, yellow, green, blue, purple; from 1669 he frequently spoke of seven colours (Westfall 1980, pp. 171, 213). In Westfall’s assessment, however, although Newton compared the positions of the seven colours ‘in the spectrum to the divisions of the musical octave, he understood that such divisions were wholly arbitrary’ (Westfall 1980, p. 213). 2 In later life, Linnaeus modified his position and contended that God had created a smaller number of species than exist at present, many extant species and genera having arisen through hybridization between members of the original set.

Rakotoarisoa (Ch. 6) criticizes Malagasy researchers for their willingness to identify with their Arab or Austronesian antecedents, but not with their Africanness. He plausibly argues that this attitude derives from the supposition that certain ethnic groups are intrinsically superior to others, and points out that the absurdity of such a contention in the light of evidence that later Austronesian settlers possessed a different mode of production to earlier groups from the same region, which allowed them to impose their political and economic system upon the earlier arrivals.

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