Wallace, Anthony F. C., 1923-....Variant names
J. N. B. Hewitt was an Iroquois Indian and ethnologist.
From the guide to the Tuscarora Indian materials, 1883-1890, 1883-1890, (American Philosophical Society)
Anthony F. C. Wallace is an anthropologist.
From the description of William Parsons material, [1941-1947, n.d.]. (American Philosophical Society Library). WorldCat record id: 122380079
From the guide to the William Parsons material, [1941-1947, n.d.], Circa 1941-1947, (American Philosophical Society)
Seneca Indian Jesse Cornplanter sang the 89 songs.
From the guide to the Deswadeyon: Seneca song, 1952, (American Philosophical Society)
Anthony F.C. Wallace (1923- ) embarked on an anthropological career at a young age as a research assistant to his father, ethnologist and historian Paul A.W. Wallace in the 1930s. After briefly studying at Lebanon Valley College, Anthony enlisted in the U.S. Army, which assigned him to the 14th Armored Division. On American soil for a good portion of his enlistment, the division served in the European Theater and participated in the liberation of the Dachau concentration camp in 1945.
After his discharge, Wallace began a lifelong association with the University of Pennsylvania's anthropology department, of which he eventually became chair. His initial, somewhat untraditional, choice of undergraduate majors--history and physics--reflected his desire to combine humanistic studies with scientific and technological approaches to the study of man, but the evolutionary perspective of James Frazer's The Golden Bough later guided him toward the most interdisciplinary of the social sciences--anthropology. Influenced by his father's work and his own interest in Indians, Wallace pursued graduate studies of the Delaware and Tuscarora Indians under the guidance of A. Irving Hallowell, Frank G. Speck, and Loren C. Eiseley, all direct intellectual descendants of Franz Boas. Speck had studied with Boas at Columbia, where Boas taught both Speck and Hallowell in one seminar. Speck and Eiseley, whom Speck had taught at Oberlin and brought to Penn, persuaded Hallowell, their former colleague, to return to Penn after a period at Northwestern. As an heir to the Boasian ethnographic tradition through Speck and Hallowell, Wallace inherited Boas' careful attention to methodology and his interdisciplinary conception of anthropology as encompassing physical, psychological, linguistic, and cultural studies. From his father and Speck, he inherited an interest in the rapidly disappearing cultures of the Northeastern Indians and a personal commitment to his research subjects. Through Hallowell, one of the principal figures in ethnopsychology, he learned to carefully describe behavior and psychological traits while considering the cognitive and emotional structures of his subjects. All of these he synthesized to create a unique blend of ethnology and history influenced by the social, behavioral, and biological sciences, thereby becoming one of the pioneers in the development of ethnohistory as a distinct field.
At Penn, Wallace earned his BA, MA, and Ph.D. in rapid succession. From men not known to bestow praise lightly, he received glowing recommendations that described him as a brilliant, yet humble, scholar and one of the best anthropology students with whom they had ever worked. Weaving Hallowell's psychological perspective into the study of Indian-white relations, his MA thesis examined the Delaware Indians and their chief Teedyuscung from a psychological, as well as historical, perspective. The work contained the seeds of Wallace's later work on revitalization movements, contrasting the demoralized eastern Delawares who accepted the Christian teachings of Moravian colonists with the more powerful western Delawares who developed a revitalized culture that rejected European influences. Published only a year later, King of the Delawares: Teedyuscung drew the attention of national publications and garnered largely favorable reviews. Francis Jennings, a frequent critic of Wallace's work, has opined that Wallace allowed theory to influence his presentation of data and that he relied heavily on psychoanalytic theory and biased historical accounts, perhaps overly so. Yet such tendencies often characterize the work of young scholars, as Jennings explains, and in the case of Teedyuscung, they do not detract significantly from its value as a work of anthropology. He also points out that Wallace's views toward the Quakers, quite harsh in Teedyuscung, later softened; in Death and Rebirth of the Seneca (1970), he wrote approvingly of the positive teachings and role models presented by the Quaker missionaries.
For his dissertation, Wallace took his cue from Hallowell, who encouraged his students to use Rorschach tests as a means of studying personality and culture, and Fenton, who had reviewed Hallowell's work and suggested its applicability to the Iroquois, and began an ethnopsychological study of the Tuscarora Indians. Wallace hoped to determine the personality type that occurred most frequently among the Tuscaroras and thereby to study the interaction of personality and culture. Although the modal personality occurred in only 37 percent of the population and thus did not represent the personality of most Tuscaroras, the study provided insight into common personality characteristics found among the Tuscaroras.
Indian research continued to occupy most of Wallace's time in the 1950s. In addition to an ongoing study of Seneca history and culture that he incorporated into several monographs and books, he devoted much of his free time from 1952 through 1959 to research, consulting, and testifying as an expert witness for legal cases before the Indian Claims Commission. Initially hired by the Joint Efforts Group, led by Felix Cohen, an attorney who initiated reform legislation affecting Indians during the Franklin D. Roosevelt administration, Wallace worked for several Indian nations from the eastern Iroquois to the western Sioux. The Justice Department team, headed by Erminie Wheeler Voegelin, included the Marxist anthropologist Harold Hickerson. Most of the cases dealt with the federal government's legal jurisdiction and/or rights to land (or lack thereof) in various Indian nations based on sovereignty granted to the nations in treaties of the 18th and 19th centuries.
In the midst of his research for the Indian claims, Wallace became indirectly involved in the notorious Joseph McCarthy hearings when McCarthy named Walter Lowenfels, the father of Wallace's assistant Michal Lowenfels Kane, as one of the leading Communists in Philadelphia. Lowenfels, avant garde poet of the 1920s and the editor of the Pennsylvania edition of the Daily Worker, was the oldest of the "Philadelphia Nine," leaders of the local Communist Party arrested and convicted under the Smith Act during a five-month federal trial. Despite her father's troubles and the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's refusal to admit her to their library, Kane continued to work with Wallace.
During this time, he also began nearly twenty years of research on the Seneca Indians that culminated in the publication of Death and Rebirth of the Seneca (1970), perhaps his best known and most influential work. Originally planned as a biography of the Seneca prophet Handsome Lake, the project expanded into a detailed study of Seneca society, focusing on the prophet's role in "revitalizing" Seneca culture following a tumultuous period of social and cultural change in the late 18th century. After a descent into a personal maelstrom of alcoholism and near-madness that mirrored the turbulence in Seneca society, Handsome Lake underwent a personal transformation in which he experienced a series of visions and revelations. From these, he syncretized traditional Seneca religious beliefs with ideas of individual, social, and agricultural reform inspired by Quaker missionaries into a new religion through which he sought to revitalize his culture much as he had revitalized his personal life.
Wallace noted similarities between the psychological and physiological changes that accompanied religious inspiration such as Handsome Lake's, psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia, and the personality changes associated with stress, social and cultural change, and disasters. Bringing an anthropological perspective to the increasingly accepted psychiatric theory that schizophrenia resulted from a genetic and/or biological predisposition awakened by psychological trauma, Wallace speculated that schizophrenia had both biological and cultural components, a theory he explored in "The Biocultural Theory of Schizophrenia" and "Mental Illness, Biology, and Culture."
Drawing from biological and cognitive psychological theories, he hypothesized that perhaps similar symptoms could arise in any individual undergoing psychological and physiological stress, a theory that developed into the concept of mazeway resynthesis. He noted that when individuals encounter experiences that challenge the "mazeways" through which they perceive and understand their worlds, their minds often become overwhelmed by conflict, resulting in cognitive dissonance, a state of psychological and (often) physiological turmoil. Applying Hans Selye's concept of general adaptation syndrome to the human mind, Wallace argued that attempting to exist in such discomfort often precipitates physical or mental illness. To resolve such conflicts, individuals must modify their mazeways to accommodate new, formerly troubling, elements, a process he termed "mazeway resynthesis." In more extreme cases involving prophets and psychiatric patients, Wallace believed that the altered physiological milieu resulting from stress engendered not only the process of psychological mazeway resynthesis but also the accompanying visions or hallucinations.
During this time, Wallace also developed his theory of revitalization movements, which in many ways extrapolates the concept of mazeway resynthesis to the larger society. He described five typical stages, which roughly correspond to the process of mazeway resynthesis, but at the social and cultural level. He theorized that revitalization movements, which he defined as "deliberate, organized, conscious attempts by some or all of the members of a society to construct for themselves a more satisfying culture." were more likely to occur in societies undergoing rapid and/or devastating social change. Most involved prophets who had experienced personal declines similar to that of Handsome Lake, which culminated in psychological states resembling schizophrenia, often accompanied by visions. Following these experiences, the prophets underwent personal transformations, communicated their visions and new insights to others, and synthesized old and new beliefs into new religions or ways of living that revitalized their cultures.
The intertwining themes of mazeway resynthesis and revitalization movements recurred throughout much of Wallace's work during this time, most notably in the first three books in a series of works that perhaps unintentionally fell into trilogies by subject matter. The first trilogy included Religion: An Anthropological View, Culture and Personality, and Death and Rebirth of the Seneca, all of which focused on the psychological, physiological, and cultural aspects of religion, the interaction of personality and culture, and the revitalization of individual personalities as well as cultures. In Religion, he eschewed a strictly critical view of religion in favor of an analytical approach that drew from historical, anthropological, psychological, and physiological sources. He particularly emphasized the ways in which religion and rituals serve as routes through which people achieve a sense of purpose and meaning that most people find difficult to achieve through their daily lives and as means of resolving conflicts that could threaten the existence of their cultures. With the rise of a more scientific and secular society, he foresaw a concomitant waning of institutionalized religious belief and its replacement with a non-deistic philosophy of concern for humanity. Religion moves beyond ethnological, historical, theological, and psychological theories and provides a thorough examination of the psychological and physiological aspects of ritual and religious belief.
Wallace's scientific analyses of religious beliefs and experiences, which disavowed supernatural influences and drew parallels between religious inspiration and schizophrenia, may not have endeared him to the more religiously inclined, but they did challenge previously held assumptions with regard to both religion and schizophrenia. Through his examination of the psychological, physiological, and cultural aspects of religious experiences and schizophrenia, Wallace raised vital questions regarding the role of religion in society and scientifically explained the ways in which individuals and societies react to change.
Breaking with the earlier cultural anthropological tradition of pure ethnographic description without historical context, Wallace advocated studies of cultural evolution that emulated the approach of evolutionary biology. In Culture and Personality, a scientific and at times quantitative analysis, he examined cultural evolution, the psychology of culture change, and the ways in which cultures provide cognitive frames of reference through which their members perceive and interpret events. . Using the relatively new method of componential analysis, Wallace and other anthropologists such as Floyd Lounsbury and Ward Goodenough used linguistic analysis, particularly in relation to kinship terminology, to study and describe cultures from the perspectives of those cultures rather than the perspectives of Western anthropologists.
Wallace's interests in anthropology, cognitive psychology, and biology found a home at the Eastern Pennsylvania Psychiatric Institute (E.P.P.I.) as the federal government and private foundations increased funding for interdisciplinary research in the 1950s and 1960s. As a consultant and later Director of Clinical Research at E.P.P.I., Wallace researched physiological, genetic, social, and cultural aspects of psychiatric disorders, particularly schizophrenia, arctic hysteria (piblokto), and disorders relating to nutritional deficiencies such as hypoglycemia and hypocalcemia. Applying anthropological concepts of linguistics and culture to psychiatric research, his work included studies on the terminology of emotions and the relation of hospital staff consensus to patient disturbance. During this time, Wallace also helped to develop a code of ethics for research with human subjects, following the lead of the National Institute of Mental Health, which in turn had followed guidelines established as a result of the Nuremberg War Crimes trials.
Through his affiliation with various committees during the 1960s and 1970s, Wallace continued his interdisciplinary work through studies of the psychological effects of disasters and the association between television viewing and social behavior. His influential study Housing and Social Structure, published by the Philadelphia Housing Authority, explored the negative psychological impact of living in high-rise public housing years before widespread popular criticism of such structures. Wallace also presciently argued against the popular psychological conception of homosexuality as a mental illness during the 1960s when he served as a consultant on the National Institute of Mental Health's Task Force on Homosexuality.
Throughout his years of psychiatric and sociological research, Wallace remained rooted in anthropological modes of analysis while maintaining a strong interdisciplinary perspective. As president of the American Anthropological Association in the early 1970s, he sought to bring related organizations under its umbrella and to resolve ethical conflicts such as the controversy sparked by federal efforts to recruit anthropologists for counterinsurgency missions in politically volatile nations such as Thailand.
Following the 1970 publication of Death and Rebirth, Wallace moved away from American Indian studies for several years and turned to the study of technological and social change in white America during the 19th century from an anthropological perspective. This served as the theme of his second trilogy of works, which included Rockdale, The Social Context of Innovation, and St. Clair . Inspired by his rural Delaware County, Pennsylvania surroundings, Wallace began to explore the area's history in local historical societies and courthouses, where he found a wealth of information on early 19th century textile mills and Delaware County families. From public records, county histories, and collections of personal papers, he created an evocative portrait of the Rockdale area, which he combined with an analysis of the development of industrialization into the detailed ethnohistorical study Rockdale: The Growth of an American Village in the Early Industrial Revolution (1978). Rockdale examined the paternalistic relationship between the evangelical Christian proponents of early industrial capitalism and their employees, their conflicts with freethinking radicals or "infidels," and the ultimate triumph of Christian capitalism in Delaware County, a microcosm of the larger American society. Although one might be tempted to assume that the industrialists cynically dosed their workers with religious opium as a means of subduing incipient labor troubles, Wallace demonstrates through his careful analysis of their words and actions that the textile mill owners and operators did, for the most part, live exemplary lives that reflected their belief in hard work and personal salvation.
Shortly after completing Rockdale, Wallace pursued a work that he considered its companion study, one that would study the effects of a less successful model of industrialization in American society. St. Clair: A Nineteenth Century Coal Town's Experience with a Disaster-Prone Industry (1985) explored how coal operators' disregard of geologists' warnings regarding Pennsylvania coal region geology and their failure to apply new technological innovations led to inefficient mining techniques, poor mine ventilation, and frequent accidents and explosions. Despite a thriving economy fueled by the 19th century demand for coal, the Pennsylvania coal region eventually deteriorated into economic and social disaster, replete with mining accidents, ethnic conflicts, and violence against coal operators and mine supervisors. Financially troubled small coal operators often blamed accidents not on their own failures but on Irish laborers bent on retribution against the mining companies. This developed into the true yet semi-legendary story of the Molly Maguires, whose crimes, trials, and executions became the episodes for which the coal region is perhaps best known. In St. Clair, Wallace not only analyzed the region's most prominent coal operators and the economists and industrialists who influenced them, but also painted a vivid portrait of life in the coal towns and mine patches. Although St. Clair lacks some of the warmth and familiarity that characterizes Rockdale, perhaps because of his relative distance from its subject, as Francis Jennings has noted, Wallace's work remains one of the few detailed and well-researched accounts of Pennsylvania coal region history.
Between these two massive studies, Wallace sandwiched a shorter study, The Social Context of Innovation (1982), which incorporated his research on the textile industry with his then in-progress study of the coal region. In Social Context, he described the interrelationship of technology and culture during the Industrial Revolution and the ways in which technological innovation arose from as well as resulted in social change, contrasting the Darby family's successful model of industrialization in Coalbrookdale, England with the unsuccessful examples found in Pennsylvania's coal region.
The third trilogy of works consisted of Prelude to Disaster: The Black Hawk War of 1832 (1990) The Long Bitter Trail: Andrew Jackson and the Indians (1993) and Thomas Jefferson and the Indians: The Tragic Fate of the First Americans (1999), all of which focus on Indian-white relations, and particularly government policy toward the Indians. With these works, Wallace resumed his study of American Indians but with an emphasis on their relations with the United States government and with a more pessimistic flavor than his earlier Indian research. Prelude to Disaster and The Long Bitter Trail developed out of Wallace's research for Indian claims cases and examined, respectively, the tragedies of the Black Hawk War and Andrew Jackson's Indian removal policies. Originally published as the introduction to Ellen Whitney's compilation Introduction to the Black Hawk War, 1831-1832, this brief (51-page) work traces the course of Indian-white relations in Illinois that culminated in the Black Hawk War. The Long Bitter Trail: Andrew Jackson and the Indians details the misguided and often racist policies that led the federal government to drive the southeastern Indians from their land to reservations in Oklahoma. Thomas Jefferson and the Indians: The Tragic Fate of the First Americans, his most recent work, explores Jefferson's often-conflicted relationship with the American Indian. Wallace believes that Jefferson viewed the Indians as a noble yet doomed race, whose history and language he sought to preserve while pursuing policies that ultimately would destroy their way of life.
Since his 1987 retirement, Wallace has remained an active and influential scholar, as evidenced by the three works described above and by his recent talks on the benefits and limitations of local history, which incorporate materials he used for his studies of Rockdale and St. Clair.
From the guide to the Anthony F. C. Wallace Papers, 1920-2000, (American Philosophical Society)
|Place Name||Admin Code||Country|
|Abolition, emancipation, freedom|
|American Anthropological Association|
|American Philosophical Society|
|Anthracite coal industry|
|Chester County (Pa.)|
|Coal mine accidents|
|Cognition and culture|
|Cross cultural studies|
|Delaware County (Pa.)|
|Eastern Pennsylvania Psychiatric Institute (Philadelphia, Pa.)|
|Eastern Woodlands Indians|
|Society of Friends|
|Goodenough, Ward Hunt|
|Great Britain. Treaties, etc. United States, 1794 Nov. 19|
|Indian Defense League of America|
|Indians of North America|
|Indians of North America|
|Indians of North America|
|Indians of North America|
|Indians of North America|
|Indians of North America|
|Indians of North America|
|Indians of North America|
|Indians of North America|
|Iron industry and trade|
|Jefferson, Thomas, 1743-1826|
|Labor and laboring classes|
|Military service, Voluntary|
|Mills and mill-work|
|National Science Foundation|
|Personality and culture|
|Philadelphia and Reading Coal and Iron Company|
|Porter, Peter B. (Peter Buell), 1773-1844|
|Power (Social sciences)|
|Psychiatric hospital care|
|Psychology and religion|
|Religion and science|
|Schuylkill County (Pa.)|
|Six Nations. Great Law of Peace|
|Slaves, slavery, slave trade|
|St. Clair (Pa.)|
|Strikes and lockouts|
|World War, 1939-1945|