35 Incredible Margaret Mead Quotes

35 Incredible Margaret Mead Quotes

by / Comments Off / 175 View / Nov 24, 2014

Margaret mead was a anthropologist and author from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She was born in 1901 and earned her Ph. D at Columbia University in anthropology. Her reporting about sex in South Asian culture shaped the sexual revolution of the 1960′s. She was often a feature speaker in mass media in the 1960′s and 70′s. She died in 1978 at the age of 76.

“A society which is clamouring for choice, which is filled with many articulate groups, each urging its own brand of salvation, its own variety of economic philosophy, will give each new generation no peace until all have chosen or gone under, unable to bear the conditions of choice.”

“Anthropology demands the open-mindedness with which one must look and listen, record in astonishment and wonder that which one would not have been able to guess.”

“As the traveler who has once been from home is wiser than he who has never left his own doorstep, so a knowledge of one other culture should sharpen our ability to scrutinize more steadily, to appreciate more lovingly, our own.”

“Envy of the male role can come as much from an undervaluation of the role of wife and mother as from an overvaluation of the public aspects of achievement that have been reserved for men.”

“Every time we liberate a woman, we liberate a man.”

“Human nature is almost unbelievably malleable, responding accurately and contrastingly to contrasting cultural conditions.”

“Human nature is potentially aggressive and destructive and potentially orderly and constructive.”

“I do not believe in using women in combat, because females are too fierce.”

“I have a respect for manners as such, they are a way of dealing with people you don’t agree with or like.”

“I learned the value of hard work by working hard.”

“I was wise enough to never grow up while fooling most people into believing I had.”

“If we are to give our utmost effort and skill and enthusiasm, we must believe in ourselves, which means believing in our past and in our future, in our parents and in our children, in that particular blend of moral purpose and practical inventiveness which is the American character.”

“In contrast to our own social environment which brings out different aspects of human nature and often demonstrated that behavior which occurs almost invariably in individuals within our society is nevertheless due not to original nature but to social environment; and a homogeneous and simple development of the individual may be studied.”

“In the modern world we have invented ways of speeding up invention, and people’s lives change so fast that a person is born into one kind of world, grows up in another, and by the time his children are growing up, lives in still a different world.”

“Instead of being presented with stereotypes by age, sex, color, class, or religion, children must have the opportunity to learn that within each range, some people are loathsome and some are delightful.”

“It is utterly false and cruelly arbitrary to put all the play and learning into childhood, all the work into middle age, and all the regrets into old age.”

“Learned behaviors have replaced the biologically given ones.”

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

“No skill, no special apti­tude, no vividness of imagination or precision of thinking would go unrecognized because the child who possessed it was of one sex rather than the other. No child would be relentlessly shaped to one pattern of behavior, but instead there should be many patterns, in a world that had learned to allow to each individual the pattern which was most congenial to his gifts.”

“Nobody has ever before asked the nuclear family to live all by itself in a box the way we do. With no relatives, no support, we’ve put it in an impossible situation.”

“Orientation in time, space, and status are the essentials of social existence, and the Balinese, although they make very strong spirits for ceremonial occasions, with a few startling exceptions resist alcohol, because if one drinks one loses one’s orientation. Orientation is felt as a protection rather than as a strait jacket and its loss provokes extreme anxiety.”

“Our humanity rests upon a series of learned behaviors, woven together into patterns that are infinitely fragile and never directly inherited.”

“Prayer does not use up artificial energy, doesn’t burn up any fossil fuel, doesn’t pollute. Neither does song, neither does love, neither does the dance.”

“Sister is probably the most competitive relationship within the family, but once the sisters are grown, it becomes the strongest relationship.”

“Standardized personality differences between the sexes are of this order, cultural creations to which each generation, male and female, is trained to conform.”

“The differences between the two sexes is one of the important conditions upon which we have built the many varieties of human culture that give human beings dignity and stature.”

“The first step in the direction of a world rule of law is the recognition that peace no longer is an unobtainable ideal but a necessary condition of continued human existence. But to take even this step we must return to a calm and responsible frame of mind in which we can face the long patient tasks ahead.”

“The Samoan puts the burden of amatory success upon the man and believes that women need more initiating, more time for maturing of sexual feeling. A man who fails to satisfy a woman is looked upon as a clumsy, inept blunderer.”

“The semimetaphysical problems of the individual and society, of egoism and altruism, of freedom and determinism, either disappear or remain in the form of different phases in the organization of a consciousness that is fundamentally social.”

“The solution to adult problems tomorrow depends on large measure upon how our children grow up today.”

“Today our approaches to children are fragmented and partial. Those who care for well children know little of children who are sick. The deep knowledge that comes from the intensive attempt to cure is separated from the knowledge of those whose main task is to teach.”

“We — mankind — stand at the center of an evolutionary crisis, with a new evolutionary device — our consciousness of the crisis — as our unique contribution.”

“We may say that many, if not all, of the personality traits which we have called masculine or feminine are as lightly linked to sex as are the clothing, the manners, and the form of
headdress that a society at a given period assigns to either sex.”

“With the exception of the few cases to be discussed in the next chapter, adolescence represented no period of crisis or stress, but was instead an orderly developing of a set of slowly maturing interests and activities.”