Audrey Smedley offers a unique interpretation of the role of women in traditional patrilineal societies. Her research with the Birom people of Nigeria reveals that many of the critical features of patrilyny were in fact invented by women. Her work contributes to the new global studies of women that document the realities of their lives that often contradict current Western assumptions. It is a valuable resource for researchers in anthropological kinship and theory, gender studies, and African studies.
Audrey Smedley received her Ph.D. in Social Anthropology from the University of Manchester, England. Her book, Race in North America: Origin and Evolution of a Worldview, won an Outstanding Book Award from the Gustavus Myers Center for the Study of Human Rights in 1994. Her research interests include the history and spread of the elements of race ideology, comparative slavery, human ecological adaptation, and the roles of women in patrilineal societies.