Man the Hunter

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"Man the Hunter" was the name given to a 1966 symposium organized by Richard Lee and Irven DeVore. The symposium resulted in a book of the same title and attempted to bring together for the first time a comprehensive look at recent ethnographic research on hunter-gatherers.

Eriksen and Nielson (2001, p.82) argue that the symposium was one of the high points of cultural ecology. They report the symposium as concentrating on contemporary hunters and gatherers and noted that the contributors were mostly American cultural anthropologists. The main point of the conference was that given that hunting was humanity's original source of livelihood, any theory of society and the nature of Man would require a deep knowledge of how hunters live. The symposium also emphasised the rivalry between cultural and materialist understanding of culture and society. [1]

The symposium was held at the Center for Continuing Education, University of Chicago, from April 6th to the 9th, 1966 and was attended by several of the most influential figures in then contemporary anthropology. In addition to Lee and DeVore, the symposium was attended by Marshall Sahlins, Aram Yengoyan, George Peter Murdock, Colin Turnbull, Lewis Binford, and Julian Steward.

The corresponding book, of papers presented at the symposium, was published by Aldine Transaction in 1968, under ISBNs 020233032X and 9780202330327.

The Book of the symposium[edit]

  • Lee, Richard B., and Irven DeVore. eds (1968) Man the hunter: the first intensive survey of a single, crucial stage of human development-- man's once universal hunting way of life., Chicago, Aldine


  1. ^ Eriksen, Thomas Hylland, and Finn Sivert Nielsen. 2001. A history of anthropology. London: Pluto Press.