Primitive societies (revision)

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A heading that was brought to my attention in November 2019. —Violet

The authority record as it stands today:

Primitive societies
Scope note: Here are entered works on nonliterate, nonindustrialized peoples as representatives of an early stage of social evolution based on largely 19th century theories of cultural evolution.
UF Man, Primitive [Former heading]
UF Primitive society
UF Society, Primitive [Former heading]
BT Social evolution

The Report of the SAC Ad-Hoc Subcommittee on Concepts Denoted by the Term “Primitive” was published in June 1983 and recommended replacing the word “primitive” in many (though not all) LCSH and LCC. Suggestions for replacement of that term included “preliterate societies” or “folk societies”. It appears that many of those suggestions were implemented. The Primitive societies heading (at that time in the form Society, Primitive) was not recommended to be changed at that time (page 136); see page 125 for general rationale behind keeping the phrasing.


One Reply to “Primitive societies (revision)”

  1. Also revise:
    sh 85080314 : Primitive societies ǂx Food
    sh 94008648 : Primitive societies in literature

    Possible alternatives: “Nonindustrialized societies”? I think “pre”-industrialized or “pre”-literate assumes that model of evolution into industrialized or literate societies. Or, following the report recommendations on “Agriculture, Primitive,” cancel and split into new headings “Prehistoric societies” and “Traditional societies”?

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