The 1898 Cambridge Antropological Expedition to the Torres Straits

Led by A.C. Haddon, with William McDougall, and C.S. Myers.
Prime/early example of a cross-cultural approach

The research (a) refuted Herbert Spencers hypothesis of “primitive superiority” in basic psychophysical and psychological functions as opposed to “higher functions” (b) wasn’t much difference between the “primitive” and “civilised”.

The project failed to obviate biases, assumptions, and experimental hurdles, with the result that much of the data was inconclusive.

Supposedly, the write-ups were exemplified humility, and largely avoided the pressure to draw conclusions, except to suggest prevailing assumptions were not in evidence.



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