The first years of the 20th century were fertile in events that, in retrospect, reflected the ongoing recomposition of the “science of man”, as its various protagonists then called it. The aim of this conference was to take stock of the progress made in a scientific field that was increasingly empowering and institutionalizing several disciplines that marked their territory and ambitions, while at the same time weakening the influence of physical anthropology. But it was also a question of identifying the rise in power of ethnographic research and the progressive legitimization of field practice. Moreover, the intensity of the debates on the foundations and forms of primitive religions was shaking up Catholic theology, while at the same time providing a scholarly and secular analysis of religious phenomena. These two days provided a better understanding of the institutional and intellectual effervescence that characterized the 1910s, with an arbitrary focus on 1913, just before the outbreak of a conflict whose consequences would have a severe impact on the future of the social sciences, well beyond the war years.
Scientific Direction : Christine Laurière
The proceedings of this conference were published in the e-book series “Les Carnets de Bérose”