1933 - 2010

C. Scott Littleton is a former Professor of Anthropology as well as former Chairperson of the Department of Anthropology at Occidental College in Los Angeles, California. He joined the Occidental faculty in 1962, retiring at the end of the spring semester, 2002, and of which until passing he held Emeritus status after a highly succesful and distinguished academic career.

Born in 1933 in Los Angeles, Professor Littleton grew up in the nearby beach community of Hermosa Beach, attending Redondo Union High School in Hermosa's next door neighbor city of Redondo Beach (1946-50). He served in the U.S. Army in Japan and Korea (1950-52), and attended El Camino College in Torrance, California (1952-54), before enrolling at UCLA in 1955, where he received his B.A. (1957), M.A. (1962), and Ph.D. (1965).  He was elected to Phi Beta Kappa at UCLA in 1957.

An internationally recognized expert in comparative Indo-European mythology and folklore, as well as Japanese religion, Professor Littleton has published extensively on Japanese myth and religion, the origin and distribution of the Arthurian and Holy Grail legends, and the theories of the late French mythologist Georges Dumézil.

Other research interests include the occult and the paranormal, especially the folkloric and mythological implications of the UFO phenomenon. He is especially interested in the extent to which rebel deities, such as Lucifer, Prometheus, and the Mesoamerican god Quetzalcoátl, are reflections of ancient alien dissidents.  He has also researched the so-called UFO Over Los Angeles, or the Battle of Los Angeles as it is sometimes known --- to which he was an eyewitness --- wherein a mysterious object, apparently impervious to over 1400 anti-aircraft rounds, flew over the Los Angeles basin in the wee hours of February 25, 1942. Professor Littleton research leans toward the possibility that the object may have been an alien craft rather than a stray Japanese observation plane or an errant barrage balloon.[1] Possibly stemming from that childhood experience is a lifelong interest in such phenomenon, leading to many non-fiction books, interviews, and articles incorporating his views, as well as at least one science fiction novel, Phase Two, which is concerned with UFOs, alien abductions, etc., molded in a similar vein as the Roswell UFO. Phase Two was published in 2002 by The Invisible College Press.

Professor Littleton also knew the controversial author Carlos Castaneda very well, having attended UCLA graduate school with him in the same department at the same time. Their lasting friendship was initially set into motion through an introduction by one of Littleton's and Castaneda's professors at UCLA, William A. Lessa. Because of the level of their friendship, Littleton had Castaneda as a most willing guest lecturer in his classes at both Occidental and UCLA Extension on many occasions. He is on record as saying in an interview titled Adventures With Cassiopaea with Laura Knight-Jadczyk, that he was convinced there was indeed a prototype of Don Juan Matus the Yaqui Indian Castaneda apprenticed under and wrote eleven best selling books about. Professor Littleton says that Don Juan was probably a Yaqui Indian who moved rather freely between the Tucson area and northern Sonora. Littleton also has said he recalled Castaneda telling him that he never saw Don Juan again, at least in the flesh, after Castaneda along with at least one other of Don Juans followers jumped into the abyss off the top of a flat, barren mountain on the western slopes of the Sierra Madre in central Mexico. He told Littleton as well, that Don Juan died shortly thereafter.

Because of his interest and ability to squeeze out sometimes hidden or shaded references in folkloric and mythological implications to the UFO phenomenon, Professor Littleton felt Castaneda's experiences reflected a UFO connection, a possibility he raised with Castaneda personally on several occasions --- despite the absence of clear-cut UFO imagery in Castaneda's writings.

Professor Littleton has received grants and fellowships from the American Council of Learned Societies (twice), the American Philosophical Society, and the Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, and has served as a Visiting Fulbright Lecturer at The University of Tokyo and Waseda University (1980-81), Tokyo, Japan, and as a Senior Fulbright Researcher at Waseda University (1994).  In 1991 he received The Graham L. Sterling Memorial Award, given annually to a distinguished member of the Occidental College faculty.

Littleton passed away from complications of pneumonia November 25, 2010 in Pasadena, California. He had recently undergone heart surgery.


QRD INTERVIEW: Littleton Q & A On Roswell

Battle of Los Angeles or UFO Over L.A.?




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The Dirt Before The Dig




In 1942 C. Scott Littleton was a young boy living along the coast in the small southern California oceanfront community of Hermosa Beach. In a recollection of the events that transpired on the night of February 25th Littleton writes:

"I was an eyewitness to the events of that unforgettable February morning in February of 1942. I was eight-years-old at the time, and my parents lived at 2500 Strand in Hermosa Beach, right on the beach. We thus had a grandstand seat. While my father went about his air-raid warden duties, my late mother and I watched the glowing object, which was caught in the glare of searchlights from both Palos Verdes and Malibu/Pacific/Palisades and surrounded by the puffs of ineffectual anti-aircraft fire, as it slowly flew across the ocean from northwest to southeast. It headed inland over Redondo Beach, a couple of miles to the south of our vantage point, and eventually disappeared over the eastern end of the Palos Verdes hills, what's today called Rancho Palos Verdes. The whole incident lasted, at least from our perspective, about half an hour, though we didn't time it. Like other kids in the neighborhood, I spend the next morning picking up of pieces of shrapnel on the beach; indeed, it's a wonder more people weren't injured by the stuff, as we were far from the only folks standing outside watching the action.

"In any case, I don't recall seeing any truly discernable configuration, just a small, glowing, slight lozenge-shaped blob light ---a single blob. We only saw one object, not several as some witnesses later reported. At the time, we were convinced that it was a "Jap" reconnaissance plane, and that L.A. might be due for a major air-raid in the near future. Remember, this was less than three months after Pearl Harbor. But that of course never happened. Later on, we all expected "them," that is, the Military, to tell us what was really up there after the war. But that never happened, either.."