Sie sind auf Seite 1von 6

Volume29, Number2, AprilI988 1 349

earlyAtlanticsettlementin Scania. Acta Archaeo- logica Lundensia,series4, 12.

MARKOVIC-MARJANOVIC,

J.

1978. "Geologyand

stratigraphy,"in Vlasac: A Mesolithicsettlementin theIron Gates, vol. 2. Editedby D. Srejovicand Z. Letica,pp. 11-27. Beograd:SerbianAcademyofSci- ences.

NEMESKERI,

J., AND

L. SZATHMARY.

1978.

"An-

thropology,"in Vlasac: A Mesolithicsettlementin theIron Gates, vol. 2. Editedby D. Srejovicand Z. Letica,pp. 69-I85. Beograd:SerbianAcademyofSci- ences.

ROZOY,

J-G. 1978. Les dernierschasseurs.Bulletinde

illustrations and measurements (Gillispie 1974:540).2

To providespecimensforhis anatomylectures,he col- lected skulls representingnumerouspopulations(Stan- ton i960:27-28). As the collectiongrew,Mortonbegan to use it as the focus of his ethnologicalresearch.By I849 theMortonCollectionofHuman Skulls contained over8oo humancraniafromthroughoutttheworld(Mor- ton i849a:vi). With Blumenbach,Morton believed that therewere fivemajorraces,each characterizedin partbytheshape ofthehead (Stantoni960:4-I, 29). He consideredcra- nial capacityan especiallygood indicatorofrace (Stan-

i960:3i). To determinecranial capacity he filled

crania with siftedmustardseed and then emptiedthe

a homemade volumetric cylinder(Stanton

i960:29-32). In I839, he used 256 of these values to calculate a mean cranial capacityforeach of the five races. The table listingthesemeans,reproducedhereas table i, was publishedalongwithmanyofMorton'sraw

data in his Crania Americana (i839:260). The thesisof thisworkwas thatnativeAmericanswereone race dis- tinctfromEskimosand Mongolians.Crania Americana implied,thoughit did not state,that each race had an independentorigin,3and since Mortonarguedthatthe raceswereas immutableas speciesthereaderwas leftto conclude that the racial differencesin cranial capacity detailedin this table were as old as humanity. As Morton continuedhis ethnologicalresearchand enlargedhis collection,he improvedtheaccuracyofhis measuringtechniqueby substitutinglead shotformus- tardseed and in I849 used 623 of these "shot values" to constructan even more elaborate table of cranial capacities. This I849 table,reproducedhere as table 2, and all of the data used in its constructionwere pub- lished in Morton's(I849a) Catalogue ofSkulls (pp.vii- viii). In thiswork,Mortonproposedthatthe fiveestab- lished races would be moreaptlydescribedas "groups" and dividedthese "groups" into "families" in turndi- videdinto "races." Late in his career,he beganto apply

enhancingthe scientific

the results of his researchto

understandingof species. From his I849 table he con- cludedthateach race was characterizedby "a collective identityofphysicaltraits"and said thathe favoredthe

independentoriginofraces(p.ix).By I 85I he was openly declaringthathumanraceswerein factspecies;physical formwas forhim theultimatecriterionfordetermining species,and his ethnologicalresearchshowed thateach race had a distinctform(Stanton i960:140-41). Mor- ton's definitionof species contradictedthe widely ac- ceptednotionofspecificinfertility.Mixed-racehumans, unlike hybridanimals, are indeed fertile,and many scholars used this to support the specific unity of

ton

la SocieteArcheologiqueChampenoise,special num- ber.

SREJOVIC,

D.,

AND

Z. LETICA.

1978. "Archeology,"in

Vlasac: A Mesolithic settlementin theIron Gates, vol. i. Editedby D. Srejovicand Z. Letica,pp. 70-

170. Beograd:SerbianAcademyofSciences.

TRINGHAM,

R. 1971. Hunters,fishers,and farmersof

easternEurope.London:Hutchinson. F. 1975. Waterresourcesofthe

world.PortWashington,N.Y.: WaterInformation Center.

S. 1975. A note on theanthropological

characteristicsofthePadina population.Zeitschrift&

ffirMorphologieundAnthropologie66:I61-75.

VAN

DER

LEEDEN,

ZIVANOVIC,

ZOFFMANN,

Z. K. I983. Prehistoricalskeletalremains

fromLepenskiVir(IronGate, Yugoslavia).Homo

34:129-48.

A New Look at Morton's CraniologicalResearch'

JOHN

S. MICHAEL

7446 OverhillRd.,MelrosePark,Pa. 19126 U.S.A.

IO VI 87

Samuel GeorgeMorton,M.D. (1799-i85i),

thegiantsofthe Americanscientificcommunityofhis time. In additionto being a practicingphysicianand a professorofanatomy,Mortonwas activein geologyand ethnology.Because of his expertisein paleontology,he was regularlycalled on to examine and describenewly uncoveredfossils.He was also lauded forhis innovative

approachto ethnologicalresearch,especiallyhis use of

was one of

I. ? I988 by The Wenner-GrenFoundationforAnthropological

Research. All rightsreserved OOII-3204/88/2902-0007$I.oo. This

paperis basedon researchreportedin "An AnalysisofSamuelG.

Morton's Catalogue ofthe Skulls ofMan and theInferiorAnimals,

ThirdEdition,Basedon a Remeasurementofa

RandomSampleof

Programin the Departmentof

seed into

2. Gillispierefersto Mortonas "a founderofinvertebratepaleon-

tologyin the UnitedStates"and describeshis firstethnological publicationas "a landmarkin anthropology." 3. StantonfeelsthatMorton,a man ofsocial standing,mayhave

shiedawayfroma directdiscussionofracialoriginsin orderto

theMortonCollectionofHumanCrania,"whichwaspresentedto

the MacalesterCollege Honors

Geologyon May i, I986. I am gratefulto JanetMonge,Gerald

Webers,JoeV. Michael,andTom andBonnieMichaelforsupport avoidanypotentialforscientificorreligiouscontroversy (PP. 32-

andencouragement.

33).

350

1 CURRENT

TABLE

I

ANTHROPOLOGY

Mean Cranial Capacities (in.3)ofRaces accordingto

Morton(1839)

Sample

Race

Size

Mean

Largest

Caucasian

52

87

IO9

Mongolian

Io

83

93

Malay

i8

8i

89

American

I47

82

IOO

Ethiopian

29

SOURCE:

Morton (i839:260).

78

94

Smallest

75

69

64

6o

65

humankind.Accordingto Morton,however,specificin-

fertilitywas a mythand hybridswere actuallyas com- mon among species of animals as they were among "species" ofhumans (StantonI960:140-41).

Gould (1978, 198I)

has criticizedMorton'sethnolog-

ical resesarch,especially his I839 and I849 tables,for conformingto the conventionalAmericanracisttenet

thatthe

"Negroes." Morton,he claims, "regardedcranialcapac-

ityas an overallindicatorofintelligence"(1978:503).

shows thatMorton'ssamples containunequal numbers ofmale and femalecrania,an importantfactorbecause cranialcapacityis generallyless in womenthanin men. He also notes thatMorton'ssamples are notuniformin size and should not have been comparedand that this sample-sizeinequalityis compoundedin the I849 table when Morton averages the means of "races" and pre- sentstheresultingvalues as the means of"families"or "groups." In addition,Gould findsthe I839 and I849

tablesinconsistentwiththeirrespectivedata because of miscalculationsand omissions. Finally,he arguesthat

Morton's I839

"Caucasian" race is superiorin intelligenceto

He

"seed data" are inconsistentwith his

He goes on to suggestthat

these errorsindicate that Morton unconsciouslydoc- toredhis resultsin termsof his a prioriconvictionof

Caucasian racial superiority.He tracesthisbias to Mor- ton'sculturalupbringingand claimsthattheerrorssserve to skew his results to conformto this bias. He even speculates that Morton may have systematicallymis-

measuredcraniarecordedin his I839 "seed data"

cordance with this bias. In the final analysis, Gould

views this as a primeexample of how

tions can influencethe outcome ofostensiblyobjective

a prioriconvic-

I849 "shot data" (pp. 505-9).

in ac-

research(pp. 504-9). To assess Gould's claims, I remeasuredthe cranial capacities of 2oi specimens fromthe Morton Collec-

tion4and comparedthevalues withMorton's.I also used

the I849

data to recalculatemean cranialcapacitiesfor

Morton'si 849

populationssimilarto thosepresentedin

table. The goals of this work were to determine(i)

4. The Morton Collection of Human Crania is currentlystoredin

the UniversityMuseum, the Universityof Pennsylvania,and was remeasured duringJanuaryof I986.

TABLE

2

Mean Cranial Capacities (in.3)ofRaces accordingto

Morton(I849a,b)

Race and Family

Modem Caucasian Group Teutonic Family Germans English Anglo-Americans Pelasgic Family Persians Armenians

1

Circassians

J

Celtic Family

Native Irish

Indostanic Family

Bengalees, &c.

Semitic Family

Arabs

Nilotic Family

Egyptians

Ancient Caucasian Group Pelasgic Family Graeco-Egyptians Nilotic Family Egyptians

Mongolian Group

Chinese Family

Malay Group

Malayan Family

Polynesian Family

American Group

Toltecan Family

Peruvians

Mexicans

BarbarousTribes

Iroquois

Lenape

I

Cherokee

Shoshone, &c.

Sample

Size

Largest Smallest Mean

i8

II4

70

90

5

I05

9I

96

7

97

82

go J

IO

94

75

84

6

97

78

87

32

9I

67

8o

3

98

84

89

I7

96

66

8o

i8

97

74

88

55

96

68

8o

6

9I

70

82

20

97

68

86

3

84

82

83

I55

IOI

58

75

22

92

67

79

i

i6x

0

104

0

70

8

84

92

85

79

Negro Group Native AfricanFamily

62

American-BomNegroes

I2

HottentotFamily

3

AlforanFamily Australians

8

99

89

83

83

65

73

68

63

83

82 J 3

75

18

75

SOURCE: Morton (I849a:viii;

i849b:222).

whetherMorton accuratelymeasured cranial capacity usingshot,(2) whetherMorton'sI849 tableis incompat- ible with his I849 data, (3) whetherthereis evidence that Mortonunconsciouslydoctoredhis I849 table in termsof a racial bias, and (4) whetherMorton's I849 table is scientificallysound. To avoid confusion,all ofMorton'smeasurementsof cranial capacity are called "measurements" and my measurementsof identical crania "remeasurements." Likewise,Morton'sdata were "calculated" in i849 and "recalculated"forthis study.His termsforthe popula- tions in his I849 table are enclosed in quotations(e.g.,

TABLE

3

Volume29, Number2, April I988 | 35'

Mean Cranial Capacities (in.3)fromMorton'sI849 Measurementsand I986 Remeasurements

Sample

Measurement

Remeasurement

Group and Subgroup("Race" or "Family")

Size

Mean

Mean

American

9I

78

76

Mexican

IO

92

88

Peruvian

54

go

88

Various tribes("Barbarous Tribes")

27

82

8i

Caucasian

52a

84

84

Ancient Pelasgic ("Graeco-Egyptians")

3

95

9i

Anglo-American

7

83

8o

Celtic

I

78

73

Egyptian

4

86

84

English

3

98

96

Fellah

6

73

73

German

Io

89

88

Indostanic

I I

78

77

Pelasgic ("Persians, Armenians,Circassians")

3

88

84

Semitic

3

84

82

Malayan

II

85

83

Malayan

8

86

84

Polynesian

3

84

82

Mongolian

Negro

4

87

83

Mongolian ("Chinese")

4

87

83

40

82

79

AfricanNegro ("Native AfricanFamily")

28

84

8i

American Negro ("American-BornNegroes")

7

8o

78

Australian

4

73

7I

Hottentot

I

75

74

Mixed

3

8o

77

aIncludes one Caucasian groupcranium ofunknown subgroup.

"group,""Egyptianrace"); my alternativesare not. All of the crania listed in Morton's i849 catalog were as- signedto rigorouslydefinedgroupsand subgroupsbased, respectively,on Morton's "groups" and on his "fami- lies" and "races" (all looselydefined).Some ofthecrania measuredby Mortondo not fitclearlyinto any of the "races" in his I849 tablebutwereassignedto subgroups accordingto Meigs's (I857) catalog of the MortonCol-

lection.5

OfthecraniameasuredbyMorton,2oi wererandomly selected forremeasurement.6Cranial capacitywas re- measuredbya techniqueadaptedfromOlivier(i969) that

5. This catalog,unlike Morton's,lists the craniaaccordingto

"race."Mygroup-subgroupclassificationwas createdsolelyforthe

analysisoftheMortonCollectionandhasnobiologicalorsociolog- ical significance.AlthoughbasedonMorton'sandMeigs'ssystems ofclassification,itis presentednotas a correctionofthesesystems butas a rigorouslydefinedalternative. 6. I originallyremeasuredI 2 randomlyselectedcraniafromeachof threepopulations:(i) Black Africansand Americans,(2) Native Americans,and (3) TeutonicEuropeansand Americans.I then chose to enlargethis studyto includeall populationslistedas "races"in Morton'sI849 tableandremeasuredI65 craniafromall "races"at random.The sampleof2oi craniathereforecontainsa slightlylargersubsampleoftheabovethreepopulationsrelativeto mostsubsamplesremeasured.

uses moldedacrylicballs in place ofshot.7Remeasured capacitieswere thenenteredinto a computerfilealong with the capacities recordedin Morton's I849 catalog. Mean cranialcapacitieswere determinedforgroupsand subgroups and compared with those presented for "groups,""families,"and "races." Each craniumwas re- measuredthreetimes,the largestvariationbeing only i.8% byvolume.8Individualcranialcapacitiesthus de- terminedwereconsistentwithMorton's9buton theav- erage32.48 cm3(roughly2 in.3)lower.Means calculated forgroupsand subgroupsfromremeasuredvalues were also consistentwith but lower than means calculated fromMorton'sdata (table3).Because the I849 tabledoes notrepresentall themeasuredcraniaMortonlisted,itis impossibleto determineexactlywhichcraniahe used in his calculations. Nonetheless, mean cranial capacity was recalculatedforgroupsand subgroupsusingall the cranialisted,and 75% ofthe "family"or "race" means reportedby Morton in I849 were foundto be within

7. Moldedacrylic"no-hole"ballsareavailablefromGreenePlast-

ics Corp.,Hope Valley,R.I.

8. Twenty-ninecraniahad a coefficientofvariationovero.99%,

whilefivewereundero.io%.

9. Over95% ofMorton'smeasurementswerewithin4 in.3ofthe

measurements;fewerthan7% weresmaller.

352

| CURRENT

ANTHROPOLOGY

TABLE

4

Mean Cranial Capacities (in.3)fromMorton'sI849 Table and I986 Recalculation

Morton's

I849 Table

Recalculation

Sample

Sample

Group and Subgroup("Race" or "Family")

Size

Mean

Size

Mean

American

338

79

335

8o

Mexican

22

79

27

82

Peruvian

I55

75

I52

75

Varioustribes("BarbarousTribes")

i6I

84

I57

84

Caucasian

I7I

i8

--a

I85

83

Ancient Pelasgic ("Graeco-Egyptians")

88

I7

87

Anglo-American

7

90

Io

85

Celtic

6

87

6

88

Egyptian

55

8o

55

8i

English

5

96

5

96

Fellah

I7

i8

32

I0

3

8o

i8

79

German

90

20

87

Indostanic

8o

33

8o

Pelasgic ("Persians, Armenians,Circassians")

84

I0

84

Semitic

89

8

85

Malayan

23

85

27

85

Malayan

20

86

23

85

Polynesian

3

83

4

83

Mongolian

6

6

82

8

85

Mongolian ("Chinese")

82

8

85

Negro

85

62

a

93

82

AfricanNegro ("Native AfricanFamily")

83

67

84

AmericanNegro("American-bornNegroes")

I2

82

I0

8I

Australian

8

75

I0

75

Hottentot

3

75

3

75

aNot calculated by Morton.

2 in.3ofthesubgroupmeans recalculatedfromthesame data (table 4). Many ofthe means presentedin Morton's I849 table are inconsistentwithhis data,probablybecause ofmis- calculations and omissions. As table 4 shows, forex- ample, the Celtic and Egyptianmeans are roundedoff incorrectly.'0Again, he lists 670 crania measured for cranial capacity and his table (p. vii) shows only 623 measurements.While he intended to omit "idiots," "mixed races," and childrenfromhis table (p. ix), this does not accountforall the omissions.Accordingto his criteria,no Fellah, Indostanic,Malayan, or Polynesian subgroupcrania should have been omitted fromthe table,and yetsome are omittedfromeach ofthesesam- ples. Table 4 appears to indicate furtherproceduraler-

rors,but thesemay be an artifactofthegroup-subgroup pearsequallypossiblethattheinequalityofsamplesizes

system.Forexample,Mortonlists the capacitiesoffive

crania describedas "Semitic"

"Baramka,or Baramacide Arabs," and one "Bedouin," butoftheseeightcraniahe tabulatesonlythree.Because

it was impossibleto determinewhich three,I included themall in the Semiticsubgroup(Meigs i857:50)." There is no indicationthatMorton'smiscalculations or omissions had any substantialeffecton his overall results.Whenall ofMorton'sI 849 dataareused to deter- mine mean cranial capacities forsubgroups,the result- ing means are quite similar to those presentedin his I849 table.'2 The onlyerrorofMorton'sI849 tablethat may indicate bias is his unfaircomparisonof samples. His samples areunequal in size and sexual distribution, and Gould (1978:505-6) has convincinglyarguedthat Mortonhad some knowledgethatsample size could af- fectmeans. It is possiblethatMortonunconsciouslyad- justedhis resultsby limitingthe size ofsome samples, but because his othererrorsdo not indicatebias it ap-

was a resultofhis ignoranceofstatistics. Unlike Morton's calculations, his specific cranial

i i. Likewise,the Mongoliansubgroupcontaineda "Laplander" thatmaynothavebeenusedbyMortoninthe"Mongolianfamily" mean. i2. Andthisis so eventhoughMortonincorrectlydeterminedthe meansfor"groups"and"families"byaveragingthemeansoftheir constituent"races.'"

(Meigs I857:34-35),

two

io. Althoughsubgroupsdo notalwaysmatchMorton's"races"in samplesize,theCelticandEgyptiansubgroupsdo.Itis quiteprob- ablethatthedatausedtorecalculatethesetwomeansareidentical to thoseusedbyMorton.

Volume 29, Number2, April I988 | 353

measurementscontainfew errors.To be sure,theyare consistentlylargerthan my remeasurements,but cur- rentanthropometriccconventionaccepts that measure-

ments of cranial capacitywill varywith the technique

Gould's speculationthatMortonsys-

(Olivieri969:134).

This is, furthermore,notGould's onlyerror.He presents

a recalculation of the I849 table entitled "Corrected

values forMorton's final tabulation" (p. 508) showing

means of86 in.3for"Native Americanpeoples," 85 in.3 for"Mongolianpeoples," "Modern Caucasian peoples," and "Malay peoples," 84 in.3 for"Ancient Caucasian peoples," and 83 in.3for"Africanpeoples." In fact,this tableis nota correction;itis based on dataandterminol- ogynotused byMorton.Gould uses datafromI839 that Mortondoes not use in finaltabulation,and his "peo- ples" do not contain all the samples in Morton's "groups." His "Africanpeoples," forexample, do not include Morton's "Australians" or "Hottentots." He

justifiesdroppingthe "Australians" fromhis "African peoples" by citing modem anthropologicalevidence showingno relationshipbetweennativeAustraliansand black Africans(p. 508). Yet he does not combine"Mod- em Caucasian peoples" and "Ancient Caucasian peo- ples" as modem anthropologistsusually do.'5 He omits the "Hottentot"subsamplefromhis "Africanpeoples" because Hottentots"are verysmall in stature,and all threecrania are female."'6 Elsewhere,however,he in- cludes a subsampleoffive"English"crania,all male, in his "Modern Caucasian peoples" mean (p. 508). Also,

CraniaiI9I,

"GermanofFrankfort,"and 1248, "Lap-

508).

lander,"areomittedfromthe "Corrected"table(P.

Contraryto Gould's interpretation,I conclude that Morton'sresearchwas conductedwithintegrity.Morton was one of the firstscholars to attemptthe studyof

human diversitythroughobjectivemeasurements,and

it is not surprisingthathe made mistakes.Althoughhe

cannotbe excusedforhis errorsorhis unfaircomparison ofmeans,he shouldbe givencreditforhavingtakenthe riskof experimentingwith a new and innovativetech- nique. He was attemptingto understandracialvariation

tematicallymismeasuredcraniausing seed is based on his statisticalanalysis of Morton's I839 and I849 data and the assumption that Morton held "Caucasians" superiorto "Americans" and these in turnsuperiorto "Negroes."'13 He admitsthathis own resultsmay have beendue to theincreasein samplesize afterI 839, buthe presentsotherevidencesuggestingthatMortonadjusted his values to position "Negroes" below "Americans."

data for"American"

craniaproducea mean capacityof8o in.3whilethe I839 table gives an "American" mean of 82 in.,3above the "Ethiopian" mean of 78 in.3 Because he findsno evi- dence thatMortonknew ofthiserror,Gould concludes that it was unconscious (pp. 505-6). I have, however, uncoveredevidence suggestingthatMortonwas aware ofit. The libraryoftheAcademyofNatural Sciences of Philadelphia holds a copy of Crania Americana that contains a dedication handwrittenby Morton. In this copythereis also a zero pennedin overthe "2" of the "82 cubic inches" recordedas the "American"mean in question.'4 Gould considersthis errora resultof Mor- ton's desire to adjust the "American" mean above the "Ethiopian" but below the "Caucasian." If therehad been a similar errorreducingthe "American" mean, however,it could also have been interpretedto indicate bias toward"Caucasians." This hypotheticalbias is sub- tlydifferentfromthatspelled out by Gould but just as reasonable.If conflictingevidence can supporttwo al- most identicalinterpretations,it cannotbe said clearly to indicateanything.Gould's statisticalanalysiswould

supporthis suspicion of systematicmismeasurement and not,as Gould claims, tryingto proveCaucasian ra-

Gould findsthat Morton's

I839

onlyifMortonhad thebias he attributesto him. Since I have foundno indicationofthatbias, and giventhe ac- curacy of Morton's shot data, it seems unlikely that Mortonsystematicallymismeasuredcraniain I839. Gould makes no mention of any errorsthat do not appear to favorMorton's assumed racial bias. I have foundsuch an error:the i849 table and my recalcula- tionsgive the "Malay group"and Malayan groupmean as 85 in.3even thoughthe recalculatedsample is larger thanMorton's;simplyaveragingtherecalculatedmeans forthe Malayan and Polynesiansubgroupsproducesa value i in.3 lower than Morton's.This errorcannotbe attributedto Morton's bias, and it is all the more noteworthybecause Gould misses it in determininga "Malay" mean of 85 in.3 using Morton's data (p. 508).

cial or intellectual superiority.The science historian William Stantonconcludesthat"Mortonhimselfnever equated cranial capacity with intelligence" (Stanton

i96o:35 |.17

AlthoughGould is mistakenin manyofhis assump- tionsaboutMortonand his work,he is correctin assert- ingthatthesetablesare scientificallyunsound.He fails, however,to mentionthe overridingreasonforrejecting them,namely,Morton'sacceptance ofthe existenceof race. Most anthropologistsfeel that thereis too little evidence to conclude with certaintywhetherthe con- ceptofraceis a biologicalrealityorsimplyan artifactof classification(Weiss and Maruyama 1976:47). If race dose not really exist, then Morton's samples are meaningless,and this criticismovershadowsGould's

I3. "I have reanalyzedMorton'sdata and I findthattheyare a

patchworkofassumptionandfinagling,controlled,probably,byhis conventionala

prioriranking(hisfolkson top,slaveson thebot-

The

tom)"(GouldI978:504).

I4. The dedicationreads,"Presentedto theAcademyofNatural

SciencesofPhiladelphiabytheAuthor.December24, I839."

inkusedforthecorrectionmatchestheinkusedforthededication,

and thehandwritingofthededicationmatchesthatfoundin the library'scollectionofMorton'spersonalletters.

I 5.I haveyettofindanyanthropologicalworkotherthanMorton's

orMeigs'sthatseparatesCaucasiansintoancientandmodempop-

ulations.

i 6. Gould did this even afterhe criticizedMortonforhaving dropped"Hindu" craniafromthe "Caucasian" samplebecause theywerenotablysmallerthantherestofthesample.

have chosento followStanton'sinterpretationbecauseit is directlysupportedbyhistoricalreferences.

I7.

I

354

CURRENT

ANTHROPOLOGY

criticismsof the size and sexual distributionsin Mor-

ton's samples. Gould nowherequestions the scientific authenticityof racial classificationand in fact,by pre- sentinga "Corrected"table,lends supportto thenotion ofracial c4assificationas a biologicalreality. Morton'stablescontainmiscalculationsand omissions

of data, but his I849

thereis no clear evidencethathe doctoredthese tables foranyreason.His tables are neverthelessscientifically unsound because his so-called samples were neverade- quatelydefined.His failureto define"race" makes his workstatisticallymeaningless.I do notarguethatosten- siblyobjectiveresearchmay not sometimesbe affected by the unconscious desires of the researcher;I simply suggestthattheworkofMortonis nota clearexampleof thisphenomenon.His workis flawed,and thescientific communitywithin which it took place was racially biased, but a connectionbetween Morton's errorsand thisconventionalracismis simplynot supportedbythe evidenceat hand.

data are reasonablyaccurate and

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GILLISPIE,

C. C. Editor.I974. Dictionaryofscience

biography.New York: Scribner.

GOULD,

S.

J.

I978. Morton'srankingofracesbycranial

capacity.Science 200:503-9.

1 I98I.

The mismeasureofman. New York:

Norton.

MEIGS,

MORTON,

J. A.

I857.

Catalogue ofhuman craniafrom

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OLIVIER,

G. I969. Practicalanthropology.Springfield:

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STANTON,

WILLIAM.

I960.

Theleopard's spots.

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WEISS,

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M. E. STEPHENS

DepartmentofAnthropology,UniversityofCalgary, Calgary,Alta., Canada T2N iN4. i8 VI87

Nonadelphic polyandry,definedforthis paper in cul- turalratherthanbiologicalterms,2is a sexual union be- tween a woman and two or more unrelatedmen such that the childrenborn to the woman are considered legitimateoffspring.Impliedin thisdefinitionis a tem- poral aspect; a series of monogamousunions does not qualify as polyandry.Also implied is an agreement amongthepartiesinvolvedin theunion; cuckoldrydoes not qualify. The early literature on polyandryamong human groups stressed its rarity.Murdock (I949:25) flatly statedthat"thepolyandrousfamilyoccursso rarelythat it may be regardedas an ethnologicalcuriosity"and mentionedonly the inhabitantsof the Marquesas and the Toda of India as usual practitioners.Nonadelphic polyandryhas been foundonly among the Nayar (see Gough i968) and the Marquesans as a normalpractice; sporadicpolyandryis foundoccasionally among other groups,usually relatedto infanticide (MurdockI949). The morerecentliteraturehas studiedthe phenome- non froma sociobiologicalperspective,examiningpoly- andryas a reproductivestrategy.Wrangham's(i980:

263) definitionof strategy,"a set of decisions which produce behaviour patternswith a particularresult:

namely,the ultimate probableoutcome is to increase the behaver'saccess to a givenresourcespecificto the strategy,"is used here.As Mulder(i987:6) has reminded us, "The evolutionaryargumentis essentiallythatdeci- sions,choicesand customarypatternsofbehaviourhave the ultimate effectof increasingreproductivesuccess, whetherthisis a conscious goal or not." Most studiesofpolyandryassume thattheevolution- arybenefitsto females are obvious. In culturalterms, polyandrymay be describedas benefittingfemalesby makingthelabourand resourcesoftwomenavailableto theiroffspring.These are benefitsin termsofreproduc- tivesuccess; theemotionalcosts,as shownin theinter- view witha sharedwifein the i982 AustralianfilmFirst Contact,may be high. Benefitto males has receivedmorethoroughexamina- tion. Followingthe lead ofTrivers(I972), notionssuch

i. ? I988 by The Wenner-GrenFoundationforAnthropological

Research.All

2. Thebiologicaldefinitionofpolyandryis morespecific.Inbiolog-

ical terms"cooperativepolyandry"is the unionoftwo or more males witha singlefemaleduringa singlebreedingseasonand theircooperationin raisingthesubsequentoffspring(Faaborgand Pattersoni 981).

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