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Permission to publish from the Edward Norbeck Academic Papers must be obtained from the Woodson Research Center, Fondren Library, Rice University.
Biographical / Historical
Edward Norbeck was born in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, Canada, in 1915. He received his B.A. (1948), M.A. (1949) and Ph.D. (1952) in Anthropology from the University of Michigan. Dr. Norbeck was an assistant professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Berkeley, and at the University of Utah. He became a member of the Rice University faculty in 1960 and was Chairman of the Department of Anthropology and Sociology from 1960-1971. He was a professor of Anthropology from 1962-80. Dr. Norbeck was Director of the Graduate Program in Behavioral Sciences and he served as Dean of Humanities from 1965-67. He retired in 1981 and afterward taught for five additional years at other universities as visiting professor.
He was also active in many professional societies in various capacities such as being president of the American Ethnological Society and Program Director of the annual meeting of the American Anthropological Association. He also acted as chair for a symposium held at Rice University in 1966 entitled The Study of Personality: An Interdisciplinary Appraisal.
Dr. Norbeck was an expert in the cultures of the Pacific Ocean area and did extensive field work in Japan and Hawaii. In 1958-59, he studied postwar economic and social changes in urban Japan, Tokyo, and in rural northeastern Japan. In 1964 he received a National Science Foundation grant to go to Japan to study the new social institutions which had grown up there since World War II, with particular emphasis on that nation's 168 new religions. In 1972 he was named a Piper Professor, an award given by the Piper Foundation of San Antonio which honors university professors for demonstrated ability in the classroom. He was the recipient of grants from the Ford Foundation and the Wenner-Gren Foundation.
Dr. Norbeck published many books and articles and was an editor of the Rice University Studies (1963-1967). He also edited many other papers and theses.
Dr. Norbeck, then Professor Emeritus at Rice University, passed away in August 1991.
The papers of anthropologist Dr. Edward Norbeck, an expert in the cultures of the Pacific Ocean area, consist of correspondence, lecture notes, article drafts dating from his years at Rice University and at the University of California at Berkeley.
These papers were received by Woodson Research Center in November 1993.