Lévi-Strauss

Released Thursday, 23rd May 2013
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Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss the work of the anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss. One of twentieth-century France's most celebrated intellectuals, Lévi-Strauss attempted to show in his work that thought processes were a feature universal to humans, whether they lived in tribal rainforest societies or in the rich intellectual life of Paris. During the 1930s he studied native Brazilian tribes in the Amazonian jungle, but for most of his long career he preferred the study to the field. He was the leading exponent of structuralism, a school of thought which was influential for decades, and was involved in a famous debate with his friend Jean-Paul Sartre, who resisted many of his ideas. His books about the nature of myth, human thought and kinship are now seen as some of the most important anthropological texts written in the twentieth century.

With:

Adam Kuper
Visiting Professor of Anthropology at Boston University

Christina Howells
Professor of French at Oxford University

Vincent Debaene
Associate Professor of French Literature at Columbia University

Producer: Thomas Morris.

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Episode Details

Length
42m 3s
Explicit
No

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