Riane Eisler

Riane Eisler

Riane Eisler is best known for her international bestseller The Chalice and The Blade: Our History, Our Future (Harper & Row 1987), hailed by Princeton anthropologist Ashley Montagu as "the most important book since Darwin's Origin of Species" and by novelist Isabel Allende as “one of those magnificent key books that can transform us". This was the first book reporting the results of Eisler’s study of human cultures spanning 30,000 years, and is in 22 languages, including most European languages and Chinese, Russian, Korean, Hebrew, and Japanese.

Riane Eisler is president of the Center for Partnership Studies, a nonprofit organization founded to apply her findings to all spheres of life through research and education. She is a charismatic speaker who keynotes conferences worldwide, and a consultant to business and government. She was honored as the only woman among twenty great thinkers including Vico, Hegel, Spengler, Adam Smith, Marx, and Toynbee featured in Macrohistory and Macrohistorians, in recognition of her work’s lasting importance.

Dr. Eisler was born in Vienna, fled from the Nazis with her parents to Cuba, and later emigrated to the United States. She obtained degrees in sociology and law from the University of California and received an honorary doctorate in humane letters from Case Western Reserve University in 2005. She taught pioneering classes on women and the law at UCLA, is a founding member of the General Evolution Research Group (GERG) and the Alliance for a Caring Economy (ACE), a fellow of the World Academy of Art and Science and World Business Academy, and a commissioner of the World Commission on Global Consciousness and Spirituality, along with the Dalai Lama, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and other spiritual leaders.

Dr. Eisler's other books, Sacred Pleasure (Harper Collins 1995),Tomorrow’s Children (Westview Press 2000), The Power of Partnership (New World Library 2002), Dissolution (McGraw Hill 1977), and The Equal Rights Handbook (Avon 1978), have also received wide use and critical praise. Her 1995 Center for Partnership Studies study, Women, Men, and the Global Quality of Life, documents the strong correlation between the status of women and the general quality of a nation’s life based on statistical data from 89 nations. She has published over 200 articles for publications ranging from Behavioral Science, Futures, Political Psychology, and The UNESCO Courier to Brain and Mind, The International Journal of Women's Studies, the Human Rights Quarterly, and the World Encyclopedia of Peace. She is co-editor of Educating for a Culture of Peace (Heinemann, 2004). Her latest book is The Real Wealth of Nations: Creating a Caring Economics.

Based on her work as a cultural historian and evolutionary theorist over the last twenty years, she introduced the partnership model and the domination model as two underlying possibilities for structuring beliefs, institutions, and relations that transcend categories such as religious vs. secular, right vs. left, and technologically developed or undeveloped. Her pioneering work in human rights expanded the focus of international organizations to include the rights of women and children. Her research has impacted many fields, from history and sociology to economics and education; for example, it inspired the Montessori Foundation to start a Center for Partnership Education.

Dr. Eisler serves on many boards, commissions, and advisory councils, including the Editorial Board of World Futures, the Global Council of the International Museum of Women, and the International Editorial Board of The Encyclopedia of Conflict, Violence, and Peace. She co-founded the Spiritual Alliance to Stop Intimate Violence (SAIV) with Nobel Peace Laureate Betty Williams (with Council members such as Queen Noor of Jordan, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Harvard theologian Harvey Cox, and global leaders such as Jane Goodall).