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Pierre van den Berghe

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Title: Pierre van den Berghe  
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Pierre van den Berghe

Pierre L. van den Berghe (born 1933) is professor emeritus[1] of sociology and anthropology at the University of Washington, where he has worked since 1965. Born in the Belgian Congo to Belgian parents, and spending World War II in occupied Belgium, he was an early witness to ethnic conflict and racism, which eventually led him to become a leading authority on ethnic relations. He has conducted field work in South Africa, Mexico, Guatemala, Iran, Lebanon, Nigeria, Peru, and Israel. A student of Talcott Parsons at Harvard (receiving the Ph.D. in 1960), he nevertheless had little interest in structural functionalism and was one of the first proponents of sociobiological approaches to social phenomena.[2]

In 1978, van den Berge was awarded a Golden Fleece prize by Senator William Proxmire for "the biggest, most ridiculous or most ironic waste of taxpayers' money" relating to a study that used part of a $97,000 grant to conclude that Peruvian brothels serve as, among other things, a gathering place for drinking and storytelling.[3][4]

Selected work

  • Van den Berghe, Pierre L. 1981. The Ethnic Phenomenon. New York: Elsevier.
  • ---. 1979. Human Family Systems: An Evolutionary View. New York: Elsevier.
  • ---. 1977. Inequality in the Peruvian Andes: Class and Ethnicity in Cuzco. Columbia: University of Missouri Press.
  • ---. 1975. Man in Society: A Biosocial View. New York: Elsevier.
  • ---. 1973. Age and Sex in Human Societies: A Biosocial Perspective. Belmont, Calif: Wadsworth Pub. Co.
  • ---. 1972. Intergroup Relations: Sociological Perspectives. New York: Basic Books.
  • ---. 1970. Academic Gamesmanship; How to Make a Ph.D. Pay. London: Abelard-Schuman.
  • ---. 1967. Race and Racism: A Comparative Perspective. NY; Sydney: Wiley.
  • ---. 1965. Africa: Social Problems of Change and Conflict. San Francisco: Chandler Pub. Co.
  • ---. 1964. Caneville; the Social Structure of a South African Town. Middletown, Conn: Wesleyan University Press.

See also

Biography portal



  • Van den Berghe, Pierre L. 1990. "From the Popocatetepl to the Limpopo." pages 410-431 in Bennett M. Berger, editor, Authors of Their Own Lives: Intellectual Autobiographies by Twenty American Sociologists. University of California Press.
  • Time Writers. May 1, 1978. "Fleeced Again"., Accessed July 10, 2011.

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