Navaho Veterans: A Study of Changing Values

Navaho Veterans: A Study of Changing Values

Navaho Veterans: A Study of Changing Values

Navaho Veterans: A Study of Changing Values

Excerpt

Professor Vogt's study is based largely upon field work completed before the initiation of the Values Project but has been re-cast in terms of points of view developed during his participation in the values investigation. Indeed this monograph constitutes the first full-scale and complete application of our present theory on values to a body of empirical data. For this reason and also because of the excellent brief description of the peoples in this area and of the inter-relations, Dr. Vogt report constitutes a most appropriate initial volume in the Rimrock Values Series.

The return to their communities of Navaho veterans of World War II was a singularly inviting opportunity for the student of culture change and especially of the role of specific individuals in culture change.Vogt was the only anthropologist to seize this opportunity and to study the process intensively in one Navaho group. His report is remarkable for richness of documentation, for a careful selecting and combining of methods and techniques, and for many-sidedness of theoretical orientation. His investigation also highlights the intrinsic difficulties in problems of this sort. He faces up to these difficulties with candor and modesty, and yet it is clear that he emerges with new generalizations that deserve cross- cultural testing.

Perhaps the greatest increment to theory consists in the careful dissection of the intricate interdependence of personal, social, and cultural factors in the acceptance or rejection of aspects of a foreign culture. This examination would not have been possible within the framework of narrowly anthropological concepts. Vogt has synthesized thinking from several disciplines and provided at least the adumbration of a general theory of the role of values in culture change.

CLYDE KLUCKHOHN

Cambridge, Massachusetts
November, 1951 . . .

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