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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Biography
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Restrictions
  • Digital Content

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Roy Rappaport Papers
    Identifier/Call Number: MSS 0516
    Contributing Institution: Special Collections & Archives, UC San Diego
    9500 Gilman Drive
    La Jolla, California, 92093-0175
    Languages: English
    Physical Description: 19.2 Linear feet (41 archives boxes, 5 card file boxes, 3 oversize folders, 4 map case folders)
    Date (inclusive): 1961 - 1985
    Abstract: Papers of Roy A. Rappaport, an ethnographic anthropologist. The collection includes research papers and materials generated from his fieldwork with the Tsembaga Maring of the Simbai Valley in Papua New Guinea during two field trips (1962-1963 and 1981-1982). Rappaport's first field trip was in conjunction with Columbia University for his dissertation, and the second trip served as a follow-up study. Rappaport's research was concerned with the means by which religious ritual mediates the relationships of a congregation, or population, to external entities. The papers include correspondence with colleagues, students, friends, and local Papua New Guinea officials; manuscripts of published and unpublished works; ethnographic data collected in field notebooks; typescript summaries; field notes and maps; diaries; photographs and sound recordings.
    Creator: Rappaport, Ann
    Creator: Rappaport, Roy A.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    Papers of Roy A. Rappaport, an ethnographic anthropologist. The collection includes research papers and materials generated from his fieldwork with the Tsembaga Maring of the Simbai Valley in Papua New Guinea during two field trips (1962-1963 and 1981-1982). Rappaport's research was concerned with the means by which religious ritual mediates the relationships of a congregation, or population, to external entities. The papers include correspondence with colleagues, students, friends, and local Papua New Guinea officials; manuscripts of published and unpublished works; ethnographic data collected in field notebooks; typescript summaries; field notes and maps; diaries; photographs and sound recordings.
    The fieldwork from 1962-1963 represents Rappaport's research for his dissertation. The second trip (1981-1982) served as a follow-up study that reflected similar interests, but ultimately demonstrated how the Tsembaga Maring have acculturated in the face of increasing pressure from Western culture. There is a greater breadth and depth of research material from the first trip; however, the research from the second trip evidences some comparative studies. Rappaport's wife, Ann, compiled extensive Tsembaga Maring linguistic material, which is also included in the papers. The collection was processed in two accessions.
    ACCESSION PROCESSED IN 2005
    Arranged in eight series: 1) CORRESPONDENCE; 2) FIELD NOTES, 1962-1963; 3) FIELD NOTES, 1981-1982; 4) WRITINGS; 5) TEACHING MATERIALS; 6) PHOTOGRAPHS; 7) SOUND RECORDINGS and 8) WRITINGS BY OTHERS.
    ACCESSION PROCESSED IN 2015
    Arranged in four series: 9) CORRESPONDENCE; 10) FIELD NOTES AND MAPS; 11) PHOTOGRAPHS; AND 12) AUDIOCASSETTE.

    Biography

    Roy A. "Skip" Rappaport (1926-1997) was born in New York City. He earned his B.S. in hotel administration from Cornell University (1949) and his Ph.D. in anthropology from Columbia University (1966).
    From October 1962 to December 1963, Rappaport spent fourteen months in the Simbai Valley of the Madang Territory in Papua New Guinea researching the Tsembaga Maring for his dissertation. The Tsembaga Maring, shifting swidden horticulturists, occupied approximately three square miles of the southern wall of the Simbai Valley, a region that had been contacted (1958) and "controlled" (1962) by the Australian government. Rappaport collected extensive information on Tsembaga demography, ritual, animal husbandry, gardening, linguistics, and nutrition. His research was supplemented by contact with other researchers in the Simbai Valley working with neighboring tribes, including Andrew and Cherry Vayda and Allison and Marek Jablonko, who were associated with the Columbia University Expedition along with Rappaport. In addition, Ann Rappaport, who accompanied her husband in the field, was primarily responsible for Tsembaga Maring linguistic research.
    Rappaport's dissertation, "Ritual in the Ecology of a New Guinea People: An Anthropological Study of the Tsembaga Maring" (1966), was later expanded to Pigs for the Ancestors: Ritual in the Ecology of a New Guinea People (1967). It became a landmark study of human ecology in a New Guinea central highland tribal society.
    Just prior to defending his dissertation, Rappaport accepted a position in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Michigan where he was a faculty member from 1965 until 1997, eventually distinguishing himself as the Walgreen Professor for the Study of Human Understanding. In addition, he served as the chair (1975-1980) of the Department of Anthropology and was the president of the American Anthropological Association from 1987-1989.
    A grant from the National Science Foundation enabled Rappaport to take a second trip to the Simbai Valley from October 1981 to August 1982. This trip served as a follow-up study designed to analyze the change and acculturation of the Tsembaga Maring under increasing pressure from Western culture.
    Rappaport authored two additional books: Ecology, Meaning, and Religion (1984) and, Ritual and Religion in the Making of Humanity (1999), published posthumously. He also authored over 60 journal articles.

    Publication Rights

    Publication rights are held by the creator of the collection.

    Preferred Citation

    Roy Rappaport Papers, MSS 0516. Special Collections & Archives, UC San Diego.

    Acquisition Information

    Acquired 2000, 2015.

    Restrictions

    Original sound recordings in Series 7 and 12 are restricted. Researchers may request a listening copy be produced in advance. Original negatives in Series 6C are restricted, but have been fully digitized.

    Digital Content

    Selected images from this collection have been digitized and can be viewed through links in the container list, or by clicking the link below.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Clarke, William C. -- Correspondence
    Columbia University Expedition (1962-1963 : Papua New Guinea).
    Cook, Edwin A. -- Correspondence
    Jablonko, Allison Peters, 1936- -- Archives
    Rappaport, Roy A. -- Archives
    Vadya, Andrew Peter -- Correspondence
    Watson, James B. (James Bennett), 1918-2009 -- Correspondence
    Acculturation -- Papua New Guinea -- Madang Province
    Anthropology -- Study and teaching
    Diaries -- 20th century
    Ethnology -- Papua New Guinea -- Madang Province
    Human ecology -- Papua New Guinea -- Madang Province
    Kinship -- Papua New Guinea -- Madang Province
    Madang Province (Papua New Guinea) -- Social conditions
    Madang Province (Papua New Guinea) -- Social life and customs
    Maring (Papua New Guinean people)
    Maring (Papua New Guinean people) -- Genealogy
    Maring (Papua New Guinean people) -- Rites and ceremonies
    Maring language
    Papua New Guinea -- Simbai River Valley -- Description and travel
    Papua New Guinea -- Simbai River Valley -- History, Local
    Photographic prints -- 20th century
    Swine -- Papua New Guinea -- Madang Province
    Traditional farming -- Papua New Guinea -- Madang Province