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Aberle, David

  • Person
  • 1918-2004

David F. Aberle was an American anthropologist and author. Born in 1918 in St. Paul, Minnesota, Aberle completed a Ph.D. in Anthropology at Columbia University in 1947. After returning from a stint overseas during World War II, Aberle began teaching at Harvard University between 1947 and 1950. Having worked in New Mexico studying the Navajo and Hopi for two summers in 1949 and 1950, Aberle worked for the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs in Window Rock, Arizona, where he developed an enduring interest in Navajo culture and land rights in the Southwestern United States.
Pursuing extensive field research in Arizona in the 1960s and into the 1970s and 1980s, Aberle studied Navajo kinship patterns, economic development and the Peyote religion among the Navajo. He also became an active participant in the Navajo-Hopi land dispute before the American courts in the 1970s, 80s and 90s, centred on the issues surrounding historical land occupation, removal to Reservation lands, land use and grazing rights between the Navajo and Hopi tribes in Arizona. Aberle collaborated on various exploratory reports on the subject and participated in an American Anthropological Association Ad Hoc Panel on Navajo-Hopi land claims, making recommendations to the courts and government agencies involved in the case.
From 1952 to 1960, Aberle taught in the Departments of Sociology and Anthropology at the University of Michigan, moving to Brandeis University in 1961 and the University of Oregon in 1963. Aberle and his wife, Kathleen Gough Aberle, also a professor at Brandeis and Oregon, left the United States in the wake of some controversy surrounding Gough's stated position regarding the Cuban Missile Crisis, which Aberle supported. Both Gough and Aberle were known to have Marxist leanings and openly challenged the U.S.'s position toward Cuba and the war in Vietnam and actively sought university postings in Canada. Moving to Vancouver, Aberle taught at UBC in the Department of Anthropology and Sociology from 1967, becoming Professor Emeritus in 1984.
The contributor to several volumes, and author of many essays and articles, in 1962, Aberle published the book Chahar and Dagor Mongol Bureaucratic Administration: 1912-1945. In 1966, Aberle published The Peyote Religion among the Navajo and in 1974, he published Lexical Reconstruction: The Case of the Proto-Athapaskan Kinship System with Isidore Dyen. The majority of Aberle's academic career was focused on his work with the Navajo in the Southwestern U.S. David Aberle died in 2004.

Acadia Camp Householders' Association

  • Corporate body
  • 1945-

Organized by the University of British Columbia President N.A.M. MacKenzie and Gordon Shrum in 1945 to provide housing for returning veterans interested in continuing their education, Acadia Camp became the first residential unit on campus. Army huts assembled on the university grounds helped alleviate serious accommodation shortages following World War II. The Acadia Camp Householders' Association was formed shortly after 1945 to address the collective interests of the residents.

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