This book offers an analysis of the interrelationships between modes of production and modes of reproduction ("the infrastructure of society") in preindustrial and developing societies. Taking cultural materialism as their working hypothesis, the authors assume that the primary determinants of social and cultural organization reside in the infrastrucure. Stating that "human modes of reproduction are modifiable," they assert that human groups have "controlled their reproductive patterns from early foraging populations to . . . the rise of the capitalist world system," through infanticide and other strategies. This controversial hypothesis opposes Malthusian and other explanations of demographics; and it negates some of the anthropological stances on this complex topic. For specialists. Winifred Lambrecht, Anthropology Dept., Brown Univ., Providence, R.I.
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