Science: Where Fathers Don't Count

Although it has almost deified "Mother," Western civilization is essentially patriarchal. But a genuine matriarchy in the heart of Florida was surveyed last week by Ethnologist Alexander Spoehr in a new Field Museum publication.

Spoehr has hobnobbed with the 600 surviving Florida Seminoles, "the descendants of that handful of conservative Indians who refused to move west [to Oklahoma] with the main body of the tribe after the Seminole wars of the 19th Century."

The Cow Creek Seminoles live in 20 scattered camps, "cluttered with dogs, pigs, chickens and small children, through which mélange the women calmly move." Though every good matron owns...

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