Anthropology as Administrative Tool: the Use of Applied Anthropology by the War Relocation Authority
Description: Beginning in the 1930's a debate emerged within the American Anthropological Association over applied versus pure research. With a few exceptions the members refused to endorse or support the attempt to introduce applied anthropology as a discipline recognized by the Association. This refusal resulted in the creation of a separate organization, the Society for Applied Anthropology, in 1941. In order to prove the validity of their discipline the members of the Society needed an opportunity. That opportunity appeared with the signing of Executive Order 9066, which authorized the forced removal of Japanese-Americans from the west coast. Members of the Society believed the employment of applied anthropologists by the War Relocation Authority would demonstrate the value of their discipline. When provided with this opportunity, however, applied anthropology failed.
Date: May 1982
Creator: Minor, David