Anthropological Perspectives on Infanticide



Infanticidal behavior has been very common through-out human history. It is suggested that progenicidal behavior, whether consciously or unconsciously practiced, be defined and considered within a cultural, ecological and historical matrix in anthropological studies. Sociobiological and materialist interpretive models are considered too extremist by many anthropologists. Both approaches have an inherent tendency to treat "culture" as a subsidiary variable in infanticide, rather than as encompassing progenicidal phenomena and strategies. A useful conceptual framework with which to approach data collection is one where individuals negotiate progenicidal and child care decision-making within a sociocultural, ecological, technological, demographic and economic framework.

Keywords: Infanticide

How to Cite: Brewis, A. A. (1992) “Anthropological Perspectives on Infanticide”, Arizona Anthropologist. 8(0).