Anthony Leeds (January 26, 1925 – February 20, 1989) was an anthropologist best known for his work in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro and on urban-rural relations in Brazil.

Anthony Leeds
BornJanuary 26, 1925
DiedFebruary 20, 1989 (1989-02-21) (aged 64)
Alma materColumbia University
OccupationAnthropologist

EducationEdit

He received his B.A. in anthropology from Columbia University in 1949. Field work in Bahia, Brazil, led to his dissertation “Economic Cycles in Brazil: The Persistence of a Total-Culture Pattern: Cacao and Other Cases”. Students at Columbia at roughly the same time were Marvin Harris, Sally Falk Moore, Robert Murphy, and Andrew P. Vayda. Leeds earned his PhD in anthropology from Columbia University in 1957.[1]

CareerEdit

Leeds conducted field work among the Yaruro people in Venezuela, in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro, in the barriadas of Lima, Peru, and on labor migration in Portugal. In 1982, he became one of the first presidents of the Society for Urban Anthropology. His work reflected his wide interests; he wrote on squatters, class, warfare, technology, labor migration, rural-urban relations, systems theory, human ecology, pigs in Melanesia, and reindeer in Siberia, among other topics. He hosted Thursday night gatherings of graduate students and like-minded faculty at his house in Dedham, Massachusetts. His influence continues to shape the work of anthropologists in the United States, Brazil, Portugal, and elsewhere.

He worked at the Baldwin School in New York and at the Pan-American Union's Program of Urban Development, traveling widely in South America. He taught at Hofstra University, the City College of New York, and at the University of Texas, Austin from 1963–1972. He was a visiting professor at the University of London and University of Oxford with a Fulbright Fellowship for a year. He then moved to Boston University, where he taught from 1973 until his death in 1989.

PersonalEdit

He also wrote poetry and was a photographer. He was married twice, first to Jo Alice Lowrey, with whom he had three children, Madeleine, John, and Anne, and to Elizabeth Plotkin, with whom he had two children, Jeremy and Jared. Leeds died of a heart attack on February 20, 1989, at his home in Tunbridge, VT, at the age of 64.

The Anthony Leeds Prize is awarded in his honor by the Society for Urban, National, Transnational and Global Anthropology (formerly the Society for Urban Anthropology).[2] His papers are housed at the Smithsonian's National Anthropological Archives[3] and also with the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Guide to the Collections of the National Anthropological Archives (#L1)". National Anthropological Archives and Human Studies Film Archives. Archived from the original on 6 February 2012. Retrieved 11 March 2012.
  2. ^ "Leeds Award in Urban Anthropology". Society for Urban, National, and Transnational / Global Anthropology. Retrieved 11 March 2012.
  3. ^ "Guide to the Collections of the National Anthropological Archives (#L1)". National Anthropological Archives and Human Studies Film Archives. Archived from the original on 6 February 2012. Retrieved 11 March 2012.

Leeds, Anthony. 1964. “Brazilian Careers and Social Structure: An Evolutionary Model and Case History”. American Anthropologist, 66:1321-47.

Leeds, Anthony, and Andrew P. Vayda. 1965. Man, Culture, and Animals: the Role of Animals in Human Ecological Adjustment. Publication No. 78. Washington, DC: American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Leeds, Anthony. 1973. “Locality Power in Relation to Supralocal Power Institutions, pp. 15–41. In Urban Anthropology: Cross-Cultural Studies of Urbanization. Aidan Southall, ed., NY: Oxford University Press.

Roger Sanjek (Queens College) collected a number of Leeds's articles in Sanjek's edited volume Cities, Classes, and the Social Order (1994) Ithaca: Cornell University Press. (ISBN 0-8014-8168-6)