chapter  8
American Anthropology and the Cold War
ByHerbert S. Lewis
Pages 13

This chapter presents the historiography of anthropology from the disciplinary perspective; it can also be seen as a preemptive strike, delivered in the knowledge that critical histories are being prepared. It discusses some of Thomas C. Patterson's contentions regarding the extent to which the nature of anthropology itself—the topics dealt with and the guiding ideas—were influenced by the Cold War. The chapter focuses on Cold War, however, Patterson makes a number of claims that typify the genre—ones that implicate anthropology as a whole as well as certain individual anthropologists. It also presents a series of major research projects that were inspired by Marx, or more accurately, by Marx and Engels, who were following Lewis Henry Morgan. Granted, the relative wealth of financial support and encouragement that the foundations provided to students of anthropology had the effect of liberating American anthropology from what had been, until World War II, its overwhelming dependence on the study of American Indians and Euro-American communities.