The Patriarchs – Angela Saini & Joy Francis, in conversation

26 Jul 2023

 / 7:00pm
 / Free
68-80 Hanbury Street
E1 5JL
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Join Libreria & Words of Colour at Second Home, as we welcome Angela Saini and Joy Francis, who will be discussing Angela’s latest book The Patriarchs.

In this bold and radical book, which has been shortlisted for the Orwell Prize for Political Writing, award-winning science journalist Angela Saini goes in search of the true roots of gendered oppression, uncovering a complex history of how male domination became embedded in societies and spread across the globe. Travelling to the world’s earliest known human settlements, analysing the latest research findings in science and archaeology, and tracing cultural and political histories from the Americas to Asia, she overturns simplistic universal theories to show that what patriarchy is and how far it goes back really depends on where you are.

Despite the push back against sexism and exploitation in our own time, even revolutionary efforts to bring about equality have often ended in failure and backlash. Saini ends by asking what part we all play – women included – in keeping patriarchal structures alive, and why we need to look beyond the old narratives to understand why it persists in the present.


About the speakers:

Angela Saini is an award-winning journalist and author. She has presented science programmes on BBC radio and television, and her writing has appeared in National GeographicWired, the Lancet and Nature.

She is the author of four books, including Superior: The Return of Race Science, and Inferior: How Science Got Women Wrong, which has been translated into fourteen languages.

Angela has a Masters in Engineering from the University of Oxford and has been a fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Humboldt Foundation in Berlin. She was made an honorary fellow of Keble College, Oxford in 2023.


Joy Francis is co-founder and executive director of Words of Colour, co-founder of Digital Women UK and the award-winning Synergi Collaborative Centre. The former journalist and academic is a creative entrepreneur, curator, producer and cultural strategist.

Joy is a longstanding activist for racial equality and cultural inclusion in literature, publishing and the media. In 2022, Joy was elected to the Royal Society of Literature as an Honorary Fellow for services to literature.