Magic, Science and Religion and other essays
Outline: No writer of our times has done more than Bronislaw Malinowski to bring together in a single comprehension the warm reality of human living and the cool abstractions of science. Malinowski's gift was double: it consisted both in the genius given usually to artists and in the scientist's power to see and to declare the universal in the particular. This volume includes three of the great anthropologist's most famous essays. In "Magic, Science and Religion" he takes account of the various views of religion which Tylor, Frazer, Marett, and Durkheim have given and goes on from there to provide is own conception in which religion is not only a matter of explaining and projecting one's dream, nor simply of social communion, but religion and magic are ways men have - men being men - to make the world acceptable, manageable, and right. The essay "Myth in Primitive Psychology" makes myths part of the meaning and function of the life of the people who tell them. The final essay, "Baloma: the Spirits of the Dead in the Trobriand Islands," reveals the basis of Malinowski's functional point of view - the theory that types of social behavior must be analyzed for the need each of them fills in maintaining man and his society.
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