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Kathleen Gough

Eleanor Kathleen Gough Aberle (August 16, 1925 - September 8, 1990) was a British anthropologist who was known for her work in South Asia and South-East Asia. As a part of her doctorate work, she did field research in Malabar district from 1947 to 1949. She did further research in Tanjore district from 1950 to 1953 and again in 1976, and in Vietnam in 1976. She was known for her Marxist leanings and was on the watchlist of the FBI. [1]


[edit] Early life and education

Kathleen Gough was born in Hunsingore, near Wetherby in Yorkshire, United Kingdom on August 16, 1925.[1][2]Her family belonged to the merchant class and her father sold agricultural machinery.[3]

She had her early education in England and graduated in anthropology from the University of Cambridge and the University of Oxford.[2] She completed her doctorate in anthropology from Cambridge University in 1950.[1][2]

[edit] Field work in Asia

From 1947 to 1953, Gough did extensive anthropological research in India, primarily in the Malabar district from 1947 to 1949 and Tanjore district from 1950 to 1953.[2] She returned to India in 1976 and it was after this visit that most of her research work on India were published.[2] She was employed at teaching positions at Brandeis University from 1961 to 1963, the University of Oregon from 1963 to 1967 and Simon Fraser University from 1967 to 1970.[2] She was an Honorary Research Associate at the University of British Columbia from 1974 until her death in 1990.[2]

[edit] Later life and death

Gough married anthropologist David Aberle who was known for his leftist leanings.[1] Gough died in Vancouver on September 8, 1990 after a four-month illness with cancer.[4]She was buried on September 13, 1990 at Capilano View cemetery.[4]

[edit] Politics

Gough was a Marxist and the responses of some university administrations to her leftist leanings sometimes landed her in trouble. She supported Cuba during the Cuban missile crisis and was outspoken in her condemnation of police brutalities.[5] As a result most of the stipulated pay hikes during her teaching career were cancelled.[5][1] Moreover, Gough's membership in the Johnson-Forest Tendency and her work for civil rights and against the war in Vietnam triggered the interest of the FBI, who placed her and her husband on their watchlist.[1]

[edit] Works

Some of Gough's more important works include More Beautiful: The Rebuilding of Vietnam (1978), Rural Society in Southeast India (1981), Rural Change in Southeast India, 1950's-1980's (1989) and Political Economy in Vietnam (1990).[2]

[edit] Notes

  1. ^ a b c d e f David H. Price (2004). Threatening anthropology: McCarthyism and the FBI's surveillance of activist anthropologists. Duke University Press. pp. 307. ISBN 0822333384, ISBN 9780822333388. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h "Biography of Kathleen Gough at the University of British Columbia Archives". University of British Columbia. 
  3. ^ Kathleen Gough Aberle (198?). Kathleen Gough: Autobiographical Sketch. Unpublished. Collection of Stephen D. Aberle (son). 
  4. ^ a b Oxford dictionary of national biography: in association with the British Academy : from the earliest times to the year 2000. Oxford University Press. 2004. ISBN 0198613733, ISBN 9780198613732. 
  5. ^ a b "Biography of Kathleen Aberle". Minnesota State University. 

Related topics in the Connexions Subject Index

Alternatives  –  Left History  –  Libraries & Archives  –  Social Change  – 

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