This volume presents important essays inspired by the pioneering works of three leading women anthropologists. The title may therefore be read in more than one way. The three biographical essays in this volume as well as the comprehensive bibliographies of these anthropologists' works fully confirm the high esteem in which their remarkable personalities are held to this day and offer material about them not formerly available. The book includes important discussions by distinguished social anthropologists, based on rich ethnographic data, of the many identities, personhoods, powers, and other various categorizations of women, each author handling her material and analyses in her own distinctive way. Of particular value is Shirley Ardener's perceptive introductory essay which places the volume in the wider context of some areas of major concern to social scientists, such as the construction of identities, kinship theory, and the production of knowledge itself, as well as of the particularities of women in diverse cultures.
"Persons and Powers of Women has three principle objectives: first, a biographical tribute to three great anthropologists, Audrey Richards, Phyllis Kaberry and Barbara Ward; secondly, a comprehensive bibliography of these women's written works; and thirdly, a celebration of these women with a series of six essays devoted to the theoretical and field work which they pioneered. Each of these objectives was extraordinarily well done. Moreover, the six papers actually go beyond the achievements of Richards, Kaberry and Ward by using their works as a stepping stone to new perspectives in anthropological study ... its readership [should] include all those interested in gender and feminist studies." --African Studies
..".this book is a record of good scholarship, and it does honor the memory of those remarkable anthropologists, Audrey Richards, Phyllis Kaberry, and Barbara Ward." --American Ethnologist
"These essays should be read by anyone interested in contemporary Africa, Oceania, New Guinea and Aboriginal Australia as well as Southern and South-East Asia." --Mission Outlook