«Democracy in government, brotherhood in society, equality in rights and privileges, and universal education, foreshadow the next higher plane of society to which experience, intelligence and knowledge are steadily tending» [Lewis Henry Morgan, 1877; 552]. What is this “higher plane”? It is here that Morgan seemingly succumbs to the error made by such thinkers as Rousseau and Marx: the confusion between communitas, which is a dimension of all societies, past and present, and archaic or primitive society. “It will be a revival” he continues, “in a higher form, of the liberty, equality and fraternity of the ancient gentes.” Yet, as most anthropologists would now confirm, customary norms and differences of status and prestige in preliterate societies allow little scope for individual liberty and choice (…).
VictorTurner, The Ritual Process. Structure and Anti-Structure, Aldine de Gruyter, New York, 1969, p.130.