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Anthropologists in the Stock ExchangeA Financial History of Victorian Science$
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Marc Flandreau

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780226360300

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226360584.001.0001

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Anthropologists without Qualities

Anthropologists without Qualities

Chapter:
(p.59) Chapter Three Anthropologists without Qualities
Source:
Anthropologists in the Stock Exchange
Author(s):

Marc Flandreau

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226360584.003.0004

This chapter provides an alternative narrative to the rise and fall of the Anthropological Society. It suggests interpreting it as a “geographical secession”, i.e. a secession from the all powerful Royal Geographical Society. It suggests that the reason why Burton wanted to develop a learned society he would control had to do with the Sources of the Nile controversy. The chapter thus takes a view, which emphasizes learned societies as tools and agencies. In the same movement, the chapter narrates the continued clash with Sir Roderick Murchison’s RGS as an important factor for the subsequent decline of the ASL. After producing data documenting the rise and fall of the “anthropological bubble”, it narrates this decline until the merger with the ESL, giving rise to the Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland in 1871. It argues that using the language of business history sheds a useful light on the whole episode.

Keywords:   Royal Geographical Society, Sources of the Nile controversy, Learned Societies’ membership, Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland

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