List of Famous Anthropologists People

List of Famous Anthropologists

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List of famous anthropologists, with photos, bios, and other information when available. Who are the top anthropologists in the world? This includes the most prominent anthropologists, living and dead, both in America and abroad. This list of notable anthropologists is ordered by their level of prominence, and can be sorted for various bits of information, such as where these historic anthropologists were born and what their nationality is. The people on this list are from different countries, but what they all have in common is that they're all renowned anthropologists.

This list contains people like Yvette Mimieux and Dian Fossey.

From reputable, prominent, and well known anthropologists to the lesser known anthropologists of today, these are some of the best professionals in the anthropologist field. If you want to answer the questions, "Who are the most famous anthropologists ever?" and "What are the names of famous anthropologists?" then you're in the right place. (538 items)


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  1. 1
    Yvette Mimieux
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    Yvette Mimieux is a retired American movie and television actress.more

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    • Age: age 73
    • Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States of America
    • Profession: Businessperson, Anthropologist, Actor
    • Credits: The Black Hole, The Time Machine, Skyjacked, Berrenger's, Where the Boys Are, + more
  2. 2

    Dian Fossey was an American zoologist, primatologist, and anthropologist who undertook an extensive study of gorilla groups over a period of 18 years. She studied them daily in the mountain forests of Rwanda, initially encouraged to work there by anthropologist Louis Leakey. Her 1983 book, Gorillas in ...more

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    • Age: Died at 53 (1932-1985)
    • Birthplace: California, United States of America
    • Profession: Anthropologist, Researcher, Scientist, Zoologist
  3. 3
    Zora Neale Hurston
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    Zora Neale Hurston was an American folklorist, anthropologist, and author. Of Hurston's four novels and more than 50 published short stories, plays, and essays, she is best known for her 1937 novel Their Eyes Were Watching God. In addition to new editions of her work being published after a revival of ...more

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    • Age: Died at 69 (1891-1960)
    • Birthplace: Notasulga, Alabama, United States of America
    • Profession: Anthropologist, Novelist, Author, Writer
    • Credits: Their Eyes Were Watching God, The Gilded Six Bits
  4. 4
    Carlos Castaneda
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    Carlos Castaneda was an American author with a Ph.D. in anthropology. Starting with The Teachings of Don Juan in 1968, Castaneda wrote a series of books that describe his training in shamanism, particularly a group that he called the Toltecs. The books, narrated in the first person, relate his ...more

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    • Age: Died at 73 (1925-1998)
    • Birthplace: Cajamarca, Peru
    • Profession: Anthropologist, Author
  5. 5
    Margaret Mead
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    Margaret Mead was an American cultural anthropologist who featured frequently as an author and speaker in the mass media during the 1960s and 1970s. She earned her bachelor degree at Barnard College in New York City and her M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from Columbia University. Mead was a respected and often ...more

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    • Age: Died at 77 (1901-1978)
    • Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States of America
    • Profession: Cultural Anthropologist, Anthropologist, Professor, Author, Curator, + more
    • Credits: Trance and Dance in Bali
  6. 6

    Florinda Donner is an American writer and anthropologist known as one of Carlos Castaneda's "witches". She studied anthropology at UCLA but did not complete her degree, letting her graduate studies lapse in 1977, after having advanced to doctoral candidacy. While studying she met Castaneda and worked ...more

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    • Age: age 71
    • Birthplace: Amberg, Germany
    • Profession: Anthropologist, Author
  7. 7
    Tobias Schneebaum
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    Tobias Schneebaum was an American artist, anthropologist, and AIDS activist. He is best known for his experiences living, and traveling among the Harakmbut people of Peru, and the Asmat people of Papua, Western New Guinea, Indonesia then known as Irian Jaya.more

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    • Age: Died at 83 (1922-2005)
    • Birthplace: Manhattan, New York City, New York, United States of America
    • Profession: Anthropologist, Artist
    • Credits: Keep the River on Your Right: A Modern Cannibal Tale
  8. 8
    Al-Biruni
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    Abū al-Rayhān Muhammad ibn Ahmad al-Bīrūnī, known as Al-Biruni in English, was a Persian Muslim scholar and polymath from the Khwarezm region. Al-Biruni is regarded as one of the greatest scholars of the medieval Islamic era and was well versed in physics, mathematics, astronomy, and natural sciences, ...more

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    • Age: Died at 75 (973-1048)
    • Birthplace: Khwarezm
    • Profession: Linguist, Mathematician, Anthropologist, Scholar, Physicist, + more
  9. 9

    Robert Hayward Barlow was an American author, avant-garde poet, anthropologist and historian of early Mexico, and expert in the Nahuatl language. He was a correspondent and friend of horror writer H.P. Lovecraft and was appointed by Lovecraft the executor of his literary estate. Born at a time when his ...more

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    • Age: Died at 33 (1918-1951)
    • Birthplace: Leavenworth, Kansas, United States of America
    • Profession: Anthropologist, Author, Writer
  10. 10

    Henry Field was an American anthropologist and archaeologist. Henry Field was born in Chicago. He was a great nephew of the merchant Marshall Field and a great nephew of Barbour Lathrop. Field grew up at Baggrave Hall, Hungarton, Leicestershire, England and he was educated at Sunningdale, Eton, and ...more

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    • Age: Died at 84 (1902-1986)
    • Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States of America
    • Profession: Anthropologist
  11. 11

    Francisco Pascasio Moreno was a prominent explorer and academic in Argentina, where he is usually referred to as Perito Moreno. Perito Moreno has been credited as one of the most influential figures in the Argentine incorporation of large parts of Patagonia.more

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    • Age: Died at 67 (1852-1919)
    • Birthplace: Buenos Aires, Argentina
    • Profession: Paleontologist, Sociologist, Anthropologist, Educator, Historian, + more
  12. 12

    Michael D. Jackson is a New Zealand poet and anthropologist who has taught in anthropology departments at Massey University, the Australian National University, Indiana University Bloomington, and the University of Copenhagen. He is currently distinguished professor of world religions at Harvard ...more

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    • Age: age 75
    • Birthplace: Nelson, New Zealand
    • Profession: Anthropologist, Educator
  13. 13
    Jesse Fewkes
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    Jesse Walter Fewkes was an American anthropologist, archaeologist, writer and naturalist.more

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    • Age: Died at 80 (1850-1930)
    • Birthplace: Newton, Massachusetts, United States of America
    • Profession: Anthropologist, Archaeologist
  14. 14

    William Foote Whyte was a sociologist chiefly known for his ethnographic study in urban sociology, Street Corner Society. A pioneer in participant observation, he lived for four years in an Italian community in Boston while a Junior Fellow at Harvard researching social relations of street gangs in ...more

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    • Age: Died at 86 (1914-2000)
    • Birthplace: United States of America
    • Profession: Anthropologist
  15. 15

    Jerald T. Milanich is an American anthropologist and archaeologist, specializing in Native American culture in Florida. He is Curator Emeritus of Archaeology at the Florida Museum of Natural History at the University of Florida in Gainesville; Adjunct Professor, Department of Anthropology, College of ...more

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    • Birthplace: United States of America
    • Profession: Anthropologist, Archaeologist
  16. 16
    Edward Sapir
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    Edward Sapir was an American anthropologist-linguist, who is widely considered to be one of the most important figures in the early development of the discipline of linguistics. Sapir was born in German Pomerania; his parents emigrated to America when he was a child. He studied Germanic linguistics at ...more

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    • Age: Died at 55 (1884-1939)
    • Birthplace: Lębork, Poland
    • Profession: Linguist, Anthropologist, Scientist
  17. 17
    James Owen Dorsey
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    James Owen Dorsey was an American ethnologist, linguist, and Episcopalian missionary in the Dakota Territory, who contributed to the description of the Ponca, Omaha, and other southern Siouan languages. He worked for the Bureau of American Ethnology of the Smithsonian Institution from 1880-1895, when he ...more

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    • Age: Died at 47 (1848-1895)
    • Birthplace: Baltimore, Maryland, United States of America
    • Profession: Linguist, Anthropologist, Ethnologist
  18. 18

    Robert Francis Murphy was an American anthropologist and professor of anthropology at Columbia University in New York City, from the early 1960s to 1990. His field work included studies of the Munduruku people of the Amazon and the Tuareg people of the Sahara.more

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    • Age: Died at 66 (1924-1990)
    • Birthplace: Far Rockaway, New York City, New York, United States of America
    • Profession: Anthropologist
  19. 19

    Erna Gunther was an American anthropologist who taught for many years at the University of Washington in Seattle. Gunther's work on ethnobotany is still extensively consulted today.more

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    • Age: Died at 86 (1896-1982)
    • Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States of America
    • Profession: Anthropologist
  20. 20
    Clifford Geertz
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    Clifford James Geertz was an American anthropologist who is remembered mostly for his strong support for and influence on the practice of symbolic anthropology, and who was considered "for three decades...the single most influential cultural anthropologist in the United States." He served until his ...more

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    • Age: Died at 80 (1926-2006)
    • Birthplace: California, United States of America
    • Profession: Anthropologist, Writer
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