Kroeber, Alfred Lewis

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Kroeber, Alfred Lewis (1876–1960) An American cultural anthropologist, ethnographer of Native Americans (see his Handbook of the Indians of California, 1925
), and author of a philosophical and anthropological study of cultural development (Configurations of Culture Growth, 1944). The most concise account of his commitment to what was (against a background of nineteenth-century evolutionism) a refreshing historical particularism is his article on ‘The Eighteen Professions’ (American Anthropologist, 1915)
, a forceful statement of the ideographic approach to the study of social structures, and of his belief that history was (nevertheless) determined by cultural patterns and not accidents of personality (see also his ‘The Superorganic’, American Anthropologist, 1917