Never in Anger: Portrait of an Eskimo Family

Never in Anger Portrait of an Eskimo Family Anthropologist Jean L Briggs spent seventeen months living on a remote Arctic shore as the adopted daughter of an Eskimo family Through vignettes of daily life she unfolds a warm and perceptive tale o

  • Title: Never in Anger: Portrait of an Eskimo Family
  • Author: Jean L. Briggs
  • ISBN: 9780674608283
  • Page: 256
  • Format: Paperback
  • Anthropologist Jean L Briggs spent seventeen months living on a remote Arctic shore as the adopted daughter of an Eskimo family Through vignettes of daily life she unfolds a warm and perceptive tale of the behavioral patterns of the Utku, their way of training children, and their handling of deviations from desired behavior.

    One thought on “Never in Anger: Portrait of an Eskimo Family”

    1. An antropologist records her observations of one of the last remaining Eskimo villages unexposed to white culture. She's intrigued with the complete lack of violence within the culture, and ties it to an underlying philosophy among its people. Anger is considered a sign of insanity. Only small children become angry. An angry adult is not acceptable behavior and the person is driven from the village until the insanity is over. It's been twenty years since i read the book, but i still ponder over [...]

    2. Briggs writes beautifully, both in her descriptions of the arctic landscape and in her self-aware recounts of her Utku family's daily lives and interactions. Rather frustratingly the thesis of the book seems somewhat unexplored. I believe this is due, largely, to the author's altered subject matter post-arrival in Utku territory. Oftentimes I was left sympathising with the Utku during Briggs' frequent failures to manage her emotions, in particular her frustration and anger. It is a testament to [...]

    3. A great ethnography about the Utku Inuit group. For those interested in the anthropology of emotions, enculturation of children, emic models of cognition and emotion or simply looking for an engaging reflexive fieldwork account, check this out!

    4. This is an anthropological book that I read in my freshman year of college. It left a great impression on me about the way they raised their children and influenced a paper I wrote in that class about touching and its role in raising children. I did not research the paper well enough, but it was long before databases on computer or the internet. Anyway, the book is still in my book shelf 31 years later. I'm going to reread it when I get a chance.

    5. This book was on the clearance table in the college bookstore. In pursuit of attaining a solid education, I decided that I should read it. It sat on a shelf for a couple of years, until one winter day when I decided the subject of this book would match the weather. It was such a pleasant surprise! I was expecting a stodgy textbook style writing. Instead, it flowed almost like a novel. This was my introduction to the Inuits and the beginning of my library about their vanishing cultures.

    6. A remarkable look at the cultural influences on emotion and how emotions are expressed. What I appreciated most from this book, really the author, is the introspection and the honesty in which she examined herself- her motives, emotions, behaviors- in context of both her own culture and the Utku culture.

    7. I read this for class as an example of cultural anthropology gone wrong. It was very interesting to learn about how different Utku Eskimo society is, but her experience is mostly just depressing and heavy to read.

    8. Well written and interesting stories set in the 1960's of an American woman who was "adopted" by a Canadian Inuit family. The misunderstandings are interesting, but I would love to hear the side of the Inuit whom she lived with, to get the whole story.

    9. Reflexively and descriptively written; sets the bar high for the many ethnographies I anticipate reading in my lifetime.

    10. I loved this book! I loved getting to see what life was like for a group of Inuit people still living the nomadic life.

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