matriarchal




You can describe your family as matriarchal if it is full of strong women, headed by your feisty grandmother. A group or society is matriarchal when it is run by women.

Anthropologists use the adjective matriarchal to talk about societies that are headed by females. The word comes from the Greek matēr, “mother,” and archein, “to rule.” The term matriarchal arose as a balance to the traditional patriarchal, male-ruled, concept of society, although feminists and anthropologists often use it to describe societies in which women have equal rights, as well as families or tribes headed by mothers or grandmothers.

Definitions of matriarchal
  1. adjective

    characteristic of a matriarchy

    Synonyms:

    maternal

    characteristic of a mother
    matriarchic

    (of societies or families) having a female as the family head or having descent traced through the female line
    matricentric

    centered upon the mother
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    Antonyms:

    patriarchal

    characteristic of a form of social organization in which the male is the family head and title is traced through the male line
    paternal

    characteristic of a father
    patriarchic

    (of societies) being ruled by or having descent traced through the male line
    patricentric

    centered upon the father
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