Gender in Cross-Cultural Perspective: 7th Edition (Paperback) book cover

Gender in Cross-Cultural Perspective

7th Edition

Edited by Caroline B. Brettell, Carolyn F. Sargent


720 pages

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pub: 2017-05-09
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This carefully crafted volume introduces anthropological approaches to and perspectives on gender. It combines theoretically and ethnographically based essays in order to examine gender roles and ideology around the world. Divided thematically into 11 sections, the editors open each section with a succinct introduction to the principal issues. The articles themselves, both classic and contemporary, are drawn from all fields of anthropology and cover a wide variety of cultures. The seventh edition contains 11 new entries that reflect more recent developments in the discipline, including topics such as gender identity, transnationalism and female genital cutting. Additional features to support teaching and learning that are new to this edition include a film list and discussion questions at the end of each entry. This is an essential resource for students encountering the anthropology of gender for the first time.

Table of Contents


I. Biology, Gender, and Human Evolution

Introduction by the editors

Animal Models and Gender

Marlene Zuk

Lifeboat Ethics: Mother Love and Child Death in Northeast Brazil

Nancy Scheper-Hughes

The Cultural Nexus of Aka Father–Infant Bonding

Barry S. Hewlett

Difference Matters: Embodiment and Discourse on Difference in an Urban Public High School

Anita Chikkatur

II. Gender and Prehistory

Introduction by the editors

The Past Is a Foreign Country: Archaeology of Sex and Gender 55

Rosemary A. Joyce

The Fashioning of Women

J. M. Adovasio, Olga Soffer, and Jake Page

Inca Gender Relations, from Household to Empire

R. Alan Covey

III. Domestic Worlds and Public Worlds

Introduction by the editors

The Domestic Sphere of Women and the Public World of Men: The Strengths and Limitations of an Anthropological Dichotomy

Louise Lamphere

From “Private” Affairs to “Public” Scandals: The Modern Woman’s Challenge to Husband’s Infidelities in Uganda

Shanti Parikh

Downsizing Masculinity: Gender, Family and Fatherhood in Post-Industrial America

Chad Broughton and Tom Walton

Marriage, Modernity, and Migration: Changing Dynamics of Intimacy in a Mexican Transnational Community

Jennifer S. Hirsch

IV. Equality and Inequality: The Sexual Division of Labor and Gender Stratification

Introduction by the editors

Woman the Hunter: The Agta

Agnes Estioko-Griffin and P. Bion Griffin

Gender, Horticulture, and the Division of Labor on Vanatinai

Maria Lepowsky

Ethnographic Empathy and the Social Context of Rights: “Rescuing” Maasai Girls from Early Marriage

Caroline S. Archambault

Gender, Business, and Space Control: Yoruba Market Women and Power

Toyin Falola

V. The Cultural Construction of Gender and Personhood

Introduction by the editors

My Encounter with Machismo in Spain

David D. Gilmore

Rituals of Manhood: Male Initiation in Papua New Guinea

Gilbert H. Herdt

Surgical Transformations in the Pursuit of Gender

Lauren E. Gulbas

“Now I Gotta Watch What I Say”: Shifting Constructions of Masculinity in Discourse

Scott Fabius Kiesling

One of the Guys: Military Women Paradoxical Individuality and the Transformation of the Argentine Army

Maximó Badaró

VI. Gender, Sexuality, and the Body

Introduction by the editors

Is There a Muslim Sexuality? Changing Constructions of Sexuality in Egyptian Bedouin Weddings

Lila Abu-Lughod

From Pollution to Love Magic: The New Anthropology of Menstruation

Alma Gottlieb

Hijras: An “Alternative” Sex/Gender in India

Gayatri Reddy and Serena Nanda

VII. Gender and the State

Introduction by the editors

Japanese Mothers and Obento–s: The Lunch-Box as Ideological State Apparatus

Anne Allison

“Single Women Are Bitter”: The Gendered Production of Affective States in Chile

Nia C. Parson

Women’s Autonomy, Islam, and the French State

John R. Bowen

The “Unique Blend”: Reframing Womanhood through Turkish Drama Series

Funda Üstek and Oguz Alyanak

Female Genital Cutting: Moving Forward on Abolition?

Ellen Gruenbaum

VIII. Gender, Household, and Kinship

Introduction by the editors

What to do with Unmarried Daughters? Modern Solutions to a Traditional Dilemma in a Polyandrous Tibetan Society

Geoff Childs, Melvyn C. Goldstein, and Puchung Wangdui

Between a Rock and a Hard Place: The Labyrinth of Working and Parenting in a Poor Community

Sharon Hicks-Bartlett

Rethinking Caribbean Families: Extending the Links

Mary Chamberlain

Resignation and Refusal: The Moral Calculus of Lesbian and Gay Parenthood in the US

Ellen Lewin

IX. Gender, Ritual, and Religion

Introduction by the editors

Possessing Spirits and Healing Gods: Resolving Women’s Suffering in a Hindu Temple

Anubha Sood

“Tradition” and Threat: Women’s Obscenity in Giriama Funerary Rituals

Janet McIntosh

Shamans, Bodies, and Sex: Misreading a Korean Ritual

Laurel Kendall

How to Change a Man: Spiritual Transformation and Shifts in Gender Ideology in Evangelical El Salvador

José Leonardo Santos

X. Gender, Politics, and Reproduction

Introduction by the editors

Natural Birth at the Turn of the Twenty-First Century: Implications for Gender

Margaret MacDonald

Political Demography: The Banning of Abortion in Ceausescu’s Romania

Gail Kligman

Surrogate Motherhood: Rethinking Biological Models, Kinship, and Family

Heléna Ragoné

Making Room for Daddy: Fathers and Breastfeeding in the United States

Sarah Sobonya

XI. Gender and the Global Economy

Introduction by the editors

Little Princesses and Tiny Barons: Gender, Microfinance, and Parental Priorities in Urban Ecuador

Megan Bond Hinrichsen

Factory as Home and Family: Female Workers in the Moroccan Garment Industry

M. Laetitia Cairoli

Sexuality and Discipline among Filipina Domestic Workers in Hong Kong

Nicole Constable

Genders and Spenders: Masculinity and Money I Ecuadorian Transmigration

Jason Pribilsky

Sex Tourism, Globalization, and Transnational Imaginings

Denise Brennan

Film List


About the Editors

Caroline B. Brettell is The Ruth Collins Altshuler Endowed Professor and Director of the Dedman College Interdisciplinary Institute at Southern Methodist University, USA.

Carolyn F. Sargent is Professor of Sociocultural Anthropology and Professor of Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies at Washington University in St. Louis, USA.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Anthropology / General