Edvard Westermarck
Get Edvard Westermarck essential facts below. View Videos or join the Edvard Westermarck discussion. Add Edvard Westermarck to your PopFlock.com topic list for future reference or share this resource on social media.
Edvard Westermarck
Edward Westermarck
Edward westermarck.jpg
Edvard Westermarck
Born(1862-11-20)20 November 1862
Died3 September 1939(1939-09-03) (aged 76)
Known forWestermarck effect
Scientific career
InstitutionsLondon School of Economics
InfluencedBronis?aw Malinowski
Portrait of Westermarck

Edvard Alexander Westermarck (20 November 1862 – 3 September 1939) was a Finnish philosopher and sociologist. Among other subjects, he studied exogamy and the incest taboo.

The phenomenon of reverse sexual imprinting is when two people live in close domestic proximity during the first few years in the life of either one, and both become desensitised to sexual attraction, now known as the Westermarck effect, was first formally described by him in his book The History of Human Marriage (1891).

He has been described as "first Darwinian sociologist" or "the first sociobiologist".[1]

He helped found academic sociology in the United Kingdom, becoming the first Martin White Professor of Sociology (with Leonard Trelawny Hobhouse) in 1907 in the University of London. Other chairs he held were in Helsinki and Turku.

A radical free thinker for his time, he critiqued Christian institutions and Christian ideas on the grounds that they lacked foundation.

In the UK, his name is often spelled Edward. His sister, Helena Westermarck, was a writer and artist.[2]


  • 1891: The History of Human Marriage. 3 Vol, Macmillan, London.
  • 1906: The Origin and Development of the Moral Ideas. 2 Vol, MacMillan, London
  • 1907: Siveys ja kristinusko: Esitelmä. Ylioppilasyhdistys Prometheus, Helsinki.
  • 1914: Marriage Ceremonies in Morocco. Macmillan, London.
  • 1919: Tapojen historiaa: Kuusi akadeemista esitelmää: Pitänyt Turussa syksyllä 1911 Edward Westermarck. 2nd edition. Suomalaisen kirjallisuuden seura, Helsinki.
  • 1920: Religion och magi (Religion and magick), Studentföreningen Verdandis Småskrifter 149, Albert Bonniers Förlag, Stockholm
  • 1926: Ritual and Belief in Morocco. 2 Vol.
  • 1926: A short History of Human Marriage. Macmillan, London.
  • 1930: Wit and Wisdom in Morocco. Routledge, London.
  • 1932: Ethical Relativity.
  • 1932: Avioliiton historia. WSOY, Helsinki.
  • 1932: Early Beliefs and Their Social Influence. London: Macmillan.
  • 1933: Pagan Survivals in Mohammedan Civilisation. London: Macmillan.
  • 1933: Moraalin synty ja kehitys. WSOY, Helsinki.
  • 1934: Three Essays on Sex and Marriage. Macmillan, London.
  • 1934: Freuds teori on Oedipuskomplexen i sociologisk belysning. Vetenskap och bildning, 45. Bonnier, Stockholm.
  • 1936: The future of Marriage in Western Civilisation. Macmillan, London.
  • 1937: "Forward" in The Wandering Spirit: A Study of Human Migration. Macmillan, London
  • 1939: Kristinusko ja moraali (Christianity and Morals). Otava, Helsinki.


  2. ^ Petteys, Chris (1985). Dictionary of women artists : an international dictionary of women artists born before 1900. Boston, Mass: G.K. Hall. ISBN 0816184569.

Further reading

  • Pipatti, Otto (2019). Morality Made Visible: Edward Westermarck's Moral and Social Theory. London: Routledge (ISBN 978-0815347439)
  • Kirsti Suolinna, Catherine af Hällström & Tommy Lahtinen: Portraying Morocco: Edward Westermarck's fieldwork and photographs 1898-1913. Åbo: Akademis Förl, 2000; ISBN 951-765-046-9
  • Juhani Ihanus: Multiple origins: Edward Westermarck in search of mankind. Frankfurt am Main [u.a.]: Lang, 1999 (Europäische Studien zur Ideen- und Wissenschaftsgeschichte; 6); ISBN 3-631-34455-4

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



Music Scenes