National Anthropological Archives

Guide to the Edward Norbeck papers, circa 1950 - circa 1970

Collection ID:
Norbeck, Edward, 1915-1991
circa 1950 - circa 1970
Physical Description:
9 Linear feet

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
Although Norbeck had several other interests, most of them cross-cultural studies, the papers here represent mainly his work in Japan. There is also material concerning teachers and colleagues at Berkeley and elsewhere, including a diary of a 1939 journey to the Far East by Leslie Alvin White.
Please note that the contents of the collection and the language and terminology used reflect the context and culture of the time of its creation. As an historical document, its contents may be at odds with contemporary views and terminology and considered offensive today. The information within this collection does not reflect the views of the Smithsonian Institution or National Anthropological Archives, but is available in its original form to facilitate research.

Biographical Note
Biographical Note
Edward Norbeck (1915-1991) was born in Saskatchewan and became a United States citizen in 1941. He studied Far Eastern languages and civilization at the University of Michigan (B.A., 1948; M.A., 1949), and he continued there in anthropology (Ph.D., 1952). Between 1952 and 1960, he taught first at the University of Utah and then at the University of California at Berkeley. In 1960, he joined the staff of Rice University, where he was until he retired in 1981. He served as the chairman of the Department of Anthropology in 1962-1971 and 1978-1979 and was Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences in 1966-1967.
Most of Norbeck's field work was carried out in Japan. He was interested mainly in modern culture change in that country. In 1950-1951, he studied Takashima, a fishing community. In 1958-1959, he worked in Tokyo and in rural northeastern Japan. In 1964-1965 and 1966, he examined broadly social, religious and economic change in Japan, and in 1971, he studied a recently industrialized rural community. In 1956 Norbeck studied techological and social change on a pineapple plantation in Hawaii.

Immediate Source of Acquisition
Received from Robert K. Blair in 1994.
Separated Materials
Films from this collection were transferred to the Human Studies Film Archives (Edward Norbeck film of Japan, HSFA 1994-013).

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Access
Access to the Edward Norbeck papers requires an appointment.
Preferred Citation
Edward Norbeck papers, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution
Conditions Governing Use
Contact the repository for terms of use.

Related Materials
The National Anthropological Archives holds the Edward Norbeck photographs of anthropologists at the University of California, Berkeley, 1957 (PhotoLot 77-68).
The Woodson Research Center at Rice University holds the Edward Norbeck academic papers.

Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Japan Geographic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
National Anthropological Archives
Museum Support Center
4210 Silver Hill Road
Suitland, Maryland 20746