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BEROSE ENCYCLOPAEDIA

Lips, Julius (1895-1950)

Julius Lips was a German anthropologist and specialist in comparative legal sociology. Trained in diffusionist ethnology, attentive to material culture and non-Western art, he was a professor at the University of Cologne (1929-1933) and director of the Rautenstrauch-Joest Museum (1928-1933). Together with his wife Eva, he organised exhibitions there which provoked controversy. He left Germany for political reasons (he was a member of the SPD) and went into exile in the United States in 1934. He was supported by Franz Boas at Columbia University (1934-1936) and was a visiting professor at Howard University (1937-1939). He published his famous The Savage Hits Bback in 1937, with a preface by B. Malinowski. In 1948, he returned to Leipzig (GDR) where he wanted to build an ethnology compatible with socialism. He directed the Institute of Ethnology, founded the Institute of Comparative Legal Sociology and became rector of the university in 1949. He died in 1950. Eva Lips continued his work and defended her husband’s anthropological legacy to the end.

Keywords: Diffusionism | Antiracism | Racism | Anticolonialism | Colonialism | Socialism | 20th century | Germany | German Democratic Republic (GDR) | Art | Cultural morphology | Cultural circles/Kulturkreise | Material culture | Inverted Anthropology | Ethnology Museum | Franz Boas | Bronislaw Malinowski | Fritz Graebner