New Lives for Old: Cultural Transformation -- Manus, 1928- 1953

By Margaret Mead | Go to book overview

XVIII
Implications for the World

"I have come back," I told the people of Peri, "because of the great speed with which you have changed, and in order to find out more about how people change so that this knowledge can be used all over the world."

What, in fact, can we learn from this single historical experiment, this one detailed account of how a handful of people on an isolated South Sea island entered our modern world, and about their efforts to stay here, and our efforts to keep them here? Before attempting to draw conclusions, it is perhaps necessary again to consider to what extent their experience can be generalized -- for the people of undeveloped countries, for the mid-twentieth century, for mankind. Because one people have shown, under very special and quite unrepeatable conditions, a capacity to learn very rapidly, does this change our ideas about how rapidly other peoples can learn? To what extent can this unique little experiment be shrugged off with the statement that one swallow doesn't

-435-

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New Lives for Old: Cultural Transformation -- Manus, 1928- 1953
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Plates ix
  • Preface and Acknowledgements xi
  • Geographical and Linguistic Note xix
  • 1 - Introduction 3
  • Part One 19
  • II - Arrival in Peri, 1953 21
  • III - Old Peri: An Economic Treadmill 45
  • IV - The Wider Context in 1928 70
  • V - Yesterday's Children Seen Today 103
  • VI - Roots of Change in Old Peri 138
  • Part Two 161
  • VII - The Unforeseeable: The Coming of the American Army 163
  • VIII - Paliau: The Man Who Met the Hour 188
  • IX - What Happened, 1946-1953 212
  • Part Three 243
  • X - New Peri 245
  • XI - The New Way 275
  • XII - "And Unto God the Things That Are God's" 317
  • XIII - Rage, Rhythm, and Autonomy 343
  • XIV - New Working of Old Themes 362
  • XV - The Sunday That Was Straight 386
  • XVI - Women, Sex, and Sin 399
  • XVII - Reprieve -- in Twentieth-Century Terms 411
  • XVIII - Implications for the World 435
  • Notes to Chapters 459
  • Notes to Plates 471
  • Appendix I 481
  • Appendix II 502
  • Appendix III 516
  • Appendix IV 521
  • References 529
  • Index 533
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