Megarry, Tim 1941-

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MEGARRY, Tim 1941-

PERSONAL: Born May 17, 1941, in London, England; son of Bill (a film editor) and Peggy (a secretary; maiden name, Harris) Megarry; married Lady Henrietta Paget (a teacher), February 16, 1980; children: Katy, Matty. Education: Attended West Ham College of Technology (now University of East London), 1966-69; University of London, B.Sc. (with honors), 1969; London School of Oriental and African Studies, London, M.A., 1970; University of Greenwich, Ph.D., 2000. Politics: "Left of center." Hobbies and other interests: Classical music, walking, travel in Greece, reading novels.

ADDRESSES: Home—43 Woodsome Rd., London NW5 1SA, England. Offıce—School of Social Science and Law, Old Royal Naval College, Maritime Greenwich University Campus, University of Greenwich, 30 Park Row, Greenwich, London SE10 9LS, England; fax: +44-0-20-8331-8905. E-mail—[email protected].

CAREER: University of Greenwich, London, England, senior lecturer in sociology and anthropology, 1972—.

MEMBER: Zoological Society of London (fellow).


Society in Prehistory, New York University Press (New York, NY), 1995.

(Editor and author of introduction) From the Caves toCapital: Readings in Historical and Comparative Sociology, University of Greenwich Press (London, England), 1995.

(Editor and author of introduction) The Making ofModern Japan, University of Greenwich Press (London, England), 1995.
The Changing Third World, University of Greenwich Press (London, England), 1997.

Contributor to periodicals, including Psychology, Evolution, and Gender.

WORK IN PROGRESS: From the Caves to Capitalism, for Palgrave Press (New York, NY).

SIDELIGHTS: Tim Megarry once told CA: "Writing is a part of my overall work as a university teacher. Teaching comparative sociology has given me the opportunity to investigate a fascinating variety of societies and behavior that I wish to explore in greater depth.

"A most basic motivation for writing is the desire to produce books in order to gain a more profound understanding of questions which have become long-term interests and to communicate their intrinsic excitement. Research and writing is a 'working-out' process, in which I attempt to integrate material and ideas that are presented in a range of academic domains. I am particularly concerned to work on interdisciplinary areas that unite historical, biological, and anthropological aspects of the social sciences and humanities. While I recognize the value of research produced in specialist fields, my desire is to produce work that overlaps current subject boundaries and attempts to provide a comprehensive theoretical overview of large-scale issues.

"A very early introduction to H. G. Wells's Outline of World History and Gordon Childe's What Happened in History generated an interest which later became enlarged through an education in general sociology, in which anthropology and Marxist social theory were prominent centers of my attention. The awareness that social change and cultural variation are revealed through the study of comparative history has always been a strong element of fascination and a driving force behind my work. My discovery of Darwin became joined to a lifelong interest in natural history, earth sciences, evolution, and human cultural origins.

"Only rarely have I ever been able to follow what I consider to be the ideal pattern of writing, which I conceive as complete and continuous commitment to reading, note-making, drafting, discussion, revision, and more reading. Usually this pattern has been interrupted by teaching and other institutional demands. This has meant that weeks of research are often followed by months of diverting demands before I can return to the writing project.

"Having taught an undergraduate course on the sociology of pre-industrial societies at the end of the 1970s, I began to work on a general book in this area. The book was to cover much the same material as my course, which specialized in complex historical societies in Europe and Asia. Since it seemed appropriate to include a chapter on human origins and the emergence of society if the book was to be comprehensive, I began to read material on physical anthropology and prehistory. In particular I was struck by the work of Sherwood Washburn, Glynn Isaac, Stephen Jay Gould, Richard Lee, Jared Diamond, and Charles Redman. Reading the work of these authors began a process in which I became captivated by the issues that are raised in the study of prehistory. The general book was abandoned accordingly, and Society in Prehistory resulted more than a decade later."