Mead realized from this first experience studying a non-Oceanic culture that there was a connection between the anthropological approach used to study a culture and the characteristics of the culture studied.She continued to think about the implications of this discovery as she returned to New Guinea for her second field trip there.In the later stages of the Sepik trip, Mead and Fortune encountered British anthropologist Gregory Bateson, who was studying the Iatmul people.The three worked to develop a systematic explanation of the relationships between cultures and personality types.
Mead's ankle was too weak for her to hike through the mountains, so she had to be carried to the mountaintop village of Alitoa, she wrote, "strapped like a pig to a carrying pole." The couple was stranded there when the people carrying their belongings would go no further.There they encountered an aggressive culture in a land plagued by ferocious mosquitoes. Mead's most prominent theory about the Mundugumor is the “rope” kinship system, which has been debated by later anthropologists.These paintings are among those Mead collected from the Mundugumor.She found her Arapesh investigation conducive to “slip recording.” She first took notes by hand, in a notebook, then typed specific observations about points of the culture onto slips, coding the slips by reference category and date., guardian spirit of the adult males, is embodied through the sound of the sacred flutes and other instruments.
Mead reported that both Arapesh and Mundugumor mothers carried their babies suspended from their foreheads.