Kaberry, Phyllis Mary, 1910-

Alternative names
Birth 1910-09-17
Death 1977-10-31

Biographical notes:

Phyllis Mary Kaberry, 1910-1977, was educated at the University of Sydney. Her first fieldwork was conducted in the early 1930s in North West Australia on the social status of aboriginal women. In 1936 she moved to London to work in the Anthropology Department of the London School of Economics as a research assistant to Audrey Richards. After obtaining her doctorate in 1939 she received a fellowship from the Australian National Research Council to undertake fieldwork among the Abelam tribe in New Guinea. From 1941 to 1943, Kaberry lectured at Yale on Australia and New Guinea and edited Malinowski's unpublished material on culture change. In 1945 she made the first of five field trips to Cameroon, first under the auspices of the International African Institute and later with the support of the Wenner-Gren Foundation. In 1949, she joined the Department of Anthropology at University College London, where she remained a Reader in Social Anthropology for 26 years.

From the guide to the KABERRY, Phyllis Mary, 1910-1977, anthropologist, 1938-1963, (British Library of Political and Economic Science)

Anthropologist. Phyllis Mary Kaberry studied the daily habits of Aboriginal people living in the Kimberley region of Western Australia between 1934-1935, from which followed a thesis exploring the role of women in Aboriginal culture. She later undertook fieldwork in the Bamenda region of Cameroon. She is credited as a pioneer in the study of women in the field of anthropology.

From the description of Papers of Phyllis Kaberry, 1936-1943 [manuscript]. [1936-1943] (Libraries Australia). WorldCat record id: 760059183


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  • Cults
  • Women scientists
  • Anthropologists' writings
  • Anthropology--Research
  • Agriculture
  • Ethnology
  • Women anthropologists--Correspondence
  • Australian poetry--Women authors
  • Anthropologists--Correspondence
  • Religious activities
  • Anthropology


  • Academics
  • Anthropologists


  • Cameroon (as recorded)
  • Papua New Guinea Oceania (as recorded)
  • Asia and the Pacific (as recorded)
  • Australia (as recorded)
  • Cameroon Central Africa (as recorded)