Theodora Kroeber

Anthropologist, Author

1897 – 1979

80

Who was Theodora Kroeber?

Theodora Kracaw Kroeber Quinn was a writer and anthropologist, best known for her accounts of Ishi, the last member of the Yahi tribe of California, and for her retelling of traditional narratives from several Native Californian cultures.

Theodora Kracaw was born in Colorado, the daughter of Phebe Jane and Charles Emmett Kracaw. She later moved to California, where she studied at the University of California, Berkeley. In 1920 she earned her Master's degree in clinical psychology.

After having been left a widow in 1923 by her first husband, Clifton Brown, she studied anthropology and met and married Alfred Louis Kroeber, one of the leading American anthropologists of his generation and himself a widower. After his death in 1960, Theodora Kroeber wrote his biography. They had two children, writer Ursula K. Le Guin and English professor Karl Kroeber. Her children from her first marriage to Clifton Brown, who Alfred Kroeber adopted and gave his surname to, were Ted Kroeber and Clifton Kroeber, historian.

Two movies were made based on her account of Ishi: Ishi: The Last of His Tribe and The Last of His Tribe.

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Born
Mar 24, 1897
Denver
Spouses
Children
Nationality
  • United States of America
Profession
Education
  • University of California, Berkeley
Died
Jul 4, 1979

Submitted
on July 23, 2013

Citation

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