Structuralism (2016)

Video and audio

Paul Fry (Literary Theory): Structuralism and Deconstruction


Documentary on Claude Lévi-Strauss’ influence on other disciplines (French with subtitles)

Reading List

Structuralism and Totemism

R. Radcliffe-Brown – ‘The sociological theory of totemism’ & ‘On social structure’, in his, Structure and Function in Primitive Society. Routledge, London, 1952.

Claude Lévi-Strauss – Totemism. Penguin, 1969. (especially chapters 1 & 4).

Claude Lévi-Strauss – The Savage Mind. Weidenfeld & Nicolson, London, 1966. (chapter 4).

Edmund Leach – The Structural Study of Myth and Totemism. Tavistock, London, 1967. (introduction & chapters by Mendelson and Worsley).

Structuralism and Kinship

R. Radcliffe-Brown – ‘The mother’s brother in South Africa’, in his, Structure and Function in Primitive Society. Routledge, London, 1952.

Claude Lévi-Strauss – ‘Structural analysis in linguistics and in anthropology’, Structural Anthropology. Penguin, 1968.

Jack Goody – ‘The mother’s brother and the sister’s son in West Africa’. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, 89, 1959.

Claude Lévi-Strauss – The Elementary Structures of Kinship. Beacon Press, Boston, 1969 [1949]. (Chapter 5).

David Maybury-Lewis – ‘Prescriptive marriage systems’. Southwestern Journal of Anthropology, 21, 1965. (Also in, Jack Goody’s edited collection: Kinship: a reader).

Louis Dumont, An Introduction to Two Theories in Social Anthropology. 2006 (1971).


Fortes, M. – ‘Radcliffe-Brown’s contributions to the study of social organisation’, Time and Social Structure and other essays. Athlone, London, 1970.

Kuper, A. – Anthropology and Anthropologists: the modern British school. Revised Edition, Routledge, London, 1983. (chapters 3, 5, & 7)

Leach E. – Lévi-Strauss. Fontana, London, 1970.

Wiseman, B. (ed), The Cambridge Companion to Levi-Strauss. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 2009 (introduction).


Geertz, C. – ‘The cerebral savage’, in his, The Interpretation of Cultures. Basic Books, New York, 1973.

Derrida, J. – ‘Structure, sign and play in the discourse of the human sciences’, in his, Writing and Difference. Routledge, London, 1978. The essay was originally published in 1966.

MacCormack, C. 1980. Introduction. In, C. McCormack and M. Strathern eds. Nature, Culture, Gender. Cambridge: University Press.