Marett Lecture

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The Robert Ranulph Marett Memorial Lectureship at Exeter College, Oxford is a memorial lecture established in memory of R. R. Marett, D.Litt., D.Sc., F.B.A., Rector of the College 1928-43, by subscribers to a Memorial Fund.[1]

List of Marett Lectures[edit]

Date Lecturer Title
17 May 1947 Dorothy Annie Elizabeth Garrod Early man and the threshold of religion
5 June 1948 Herbert Jennings Rose Mana in Greece and Rome
7 May 1949 Charlie Dunbar Broad Egoism as a theory of human motives
3 June 1950 Edward Evan Evans-Pritchard Social anthropology: Past and present
2 June 1951 (George) Gilbert Aimé Murray Till Nous came and put things in order
7 June 1952 Sir Robert Eric Mortimer Wheeler Archaeology and the transmission of ideas
6 June 1953 Raymond William Firth The study of values by social anthropologists
6 May 1954 Leon Roth A contemporary moralist: Albert Camus
7 May 1955 Robert Hugh Kirk Marett Indian civilizations of Mexico and Peru
5 May 1956 Kathleen Mary Kenyon Jericho and its setting in Near Eastern history
6 June 1957 Sir Alexander Morris Carr-Saunders The social sciences and the humanities
15 May 1958 Edwin Oliver James The threshold of religion
11 March 1959 [2] John Bryan Ward-Perkins A Parthian view of the Eastern frontier of the Roman Empire: the recent excavations at Hatra
7 June 1960 Humayun Kabir Britain and India
1 February 1961 Herbert Ian Priestly Hogbin Morality without religion
8 February 1962 Courtney Arthur Ralegh Radford Evidences of Norse settlement in Britain
2 May 1963 Sir Eric Ashby An anatomy of academic life
18 February 1965 (Herman) Max Gluckman Moral crises: Magical and secular solutions [3]
25 February 1965 (Herman) Max Gluckman Moral crises: Magical and secular solutions
24 February 1966 Stuart Ernest Piggott The origins of the village settlement in prehistoric Europe
18 May 1967 William Calvert Kneale The responsibility of criminals
9 May 1968 Sir Alister Clavering Hardy Marett, anthropology and religion
8 May 1969 Jacqueline Worms de Romilly Historical necessity in the fifth century, B.C.
13 May 1971 Leslie Alcock South Cadbury excavations - Camelot, 1966–70
4 November 1971 (John Percy Vyvian) Dacre Balsdon Romulus and Remus; the birth of a legend
18 May 1972 Constantine Athanasius Trypanis Greek folk songs
8 November 1973 Willard Van Orman Quine Substitutional quantification
12 November 1974 Meyer Fortes West African seasonal festivals and the ancestors
November 20, 1975 Martin Biddle Patterns of authority? Problems in the emergence of Anglo-Saxon England
18 November 1976 David Walter Hamlyn The phenomena of love and hate
3 November 1977 Sir Edmund Ronald Leach The threshold of religion
14 November 1978 Arthur Ernest Mourant John Ranulph de la Haule Marett, pioneer biological anthropologist
8 November 1979 Charles Thomas Hermits on islands or priests in a landscape? Early Christianity in the Isles of Scilly
25 November 1980 Richard G. Swinburne Are mental events identical with brain events?
12 May 1982 Malcolm Donald McLeod African art and time
17 May 1983 Dewi Zephaniah Phillips Primitive reactions and the reactions of primitives
1985 Ernest André Gellner Anthropology between positivism and romanticism
1986 Edward Thomas Hall Archaeometry: attempting co-operation between the Arts and Sciences
1987 Bernard Williams Humans, animals and machines
1988 David Francis Pocock Persons, texts and morality
8 May 1989 Julian Alfred Lane Fox Pitt-Rivers From the love of food to the love of God
1990 Jean Sybil La Fontaine Power, authority and symbols in domestic life
26 April 1991 Thomas R. Trautmann The revolution in ethnological time
1992 Caroline Humphrey Rethinking moral authority in post-socialist Mongolia
1993 John David Yeadon Peel For who hath despised the day of small things? Missionary narratives and historical anthropology
29 April 1994 Fredrik Barth Ethnicity and the concept of culture
28 April 1995 Alan Donald James Macfarlane Illth and wealth
26 April 1996 Signe L. Howell "May blessings come, may mischiefs go!" Living kinds as agents of transition and transformation among the Lio
25 April 1997 Geoffrey Ernest Richard Lloyd The uses and abuses of classification: Ancient Greek and Chinese reflections
1 May 1998 Ruth Sophia Padel How myth uses us: Greek "Guyville" and women's rock music
30 April 1999 Martin David Goodman Explaining religious change
5 May 2000 Piers Vitebsky Forgetting the ancestors: Living without the dead
27 April 2001 James Patrick Mallory The cultural worlds of the Indo-Europeans
26 April 2002 Roger Just Of fishers and boats, and sacrificial goats: Interpreting the commonplace
2 May 2003 Jonathan Webber Making Sense of the Past: Reflections on Jewish Historical Consciousness
30 April 2004 John Bennet Archaeologies of Homer
16 September 2005 Harvey Whitehouse The evolution and history of religion
12 May 2006 Christina Toren How do we know what is true? The case of mana in Fiji
27 April 2007 Jonathan Parry Hegemony and resistance: Trade union politics in central India
25 April 2008 Sherry Beth Ortner Indie producers: Class and the production of value in the American independent film scene
1 May 2009 Scott Atran Talking to the Enemy: The Dreams, Delusions and Science of Sacred Causes and Conflicts
30 April 2010[4] Byron J. Good Theorizing the 'Subject' of Medical and Psychiatric Anthropology
6 May 2011[5] Terence S. Turner Beauty and The Beast: Humanity, Animality and Animism in the Thought of an Amazonian People
27 April 2012[5] Adam Kuper Anthropologists and the Bible
2 May 2014[5] Birgit Meyer How to Capture the Wow: Awe and the Study of Religion


Except where otherwise indicated, dates and titles are from the Oxford University Gazette.


  1. ^ Oxford University Gazette; No. 2544, 30 April 1947 (p. 689)
  2. ^ delayed from original date of February 4 due to illness
  3. ^ The lecture was originally to be delivered on 14 May 1964 as "The politics of divination in Africa", but Gluckman was forced to postpone due to an attack of malaria. The Oxford University Gazette (No. 3192) announced that the lecture was to be delayed until Michaelmas term, and it was ultimately delivered in Hilary term of 1965, when Gluckman delivered the lectures for both 1964 and 1965. He discusses these events in his introduction to his edited collection The allocation of responsibility (1972).
  4. ^ "Good Gives Marrett Lecture". Department of Global Health and Social Medicine. Harvard Medical School. 18 June 2010. Retrieved 26 May 2016. 
  5. ^ a b c "Marett Lectures". Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology. University of Oxford. 26 May 2016.