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Query

 

I made reference in an essay to Margaret Mead's remark "The great problem for any society is finding something for the men to do."   I was quite naturally asked for a source.  I couldn't.  I've just always known it.  Can anyone help?

Comments

( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
tinacastanares
Apr. 24th, 2010 07:39 pm (UTC)
mead and men
Hadn't heard that and would like to know myself. Similar meaning but pithier phrasing in her remark, "Man's role is uncertain, undefined, and perhaps unnecessary."
mastadge
Apr. 24th, 2010 08:28 pm (UTC)
Sorry. A few minutes of searching are not turning anything up.
(Anonymous)
Apr. 24th, 2010 08:34 pm (UTC)
“The recurrent problem of civilisation is to define the male role satisfactorily enough – whether it be to build gardens or raise cattle, kill game or kill enemies, build bridges or handle bank-shares – so that the male may in the course of his life reach a solid sense of irreversible achievement, of which his childhood knowledge of the satisfactions of childbearing have given him a glimpse” – Margaret Mead, “Male and Female” (1955)

A slightly forshortened version of this quote tends to crop up on feminist sites to argue for male ignorance and arrogance

- matthew davis
wordweaverlynn
Apr. 24th, 2010 08:57 pm (UTC)
Great quotation.
crowleycrow
Apr. 24th, 2010 10:21 pm (UTC)
That is precisely and exactly IT. Thanks so much. I can now carry this to the copy editor and say SEE? (Though I may have to adjust my snippet version.)
ron_drummond
Apr. 25th, 2010 01:34 am (UTC)
The full quote is so good you should try to incorporate all of it if you can.
(Anonymous)
Apr. 25th, 2010 01:40 pm (UTC)
irreversible achievement
And what is astonishing is how generous Mead is, and inclusive: that the once-child knows at the core of being what the accomplishment of the mother is.
The actual citation is so very much more complex than the part-remembered "snippet"

HW
(Anonymous)
Apr. 25th, 2010 05:25 pm (UTC)
Margaret Mead, 1949
Margaret Mead. Male and Female. A Study of the Sexes in a Changing World. William Morrow, 1949, page 160. The citation is the first part of a dense and compelling paragraph that is not just about the men.

HW
(Anonymous)
Apr. 25th, 2010 05:26 pm (UTC)
Margaret Mead, 1949
Margaret Mead. Male and Female. A Study of the Sexes in a Changing World. William Morrow, 1949, page 160. The citation is the first part of a dense and compelling paragraph that is not just about the men.

HW
(Anonymous)
Apr. 25th, 2010 05:37 pm (UTC)
apologies for doubled post
Sorry, don't know how I managed to do that.
HW
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )