At the 2012 ASWM National Conference, Heide Göttner-Abendroth of Germany received the first Saga Special Recognition Award in Women’s History. This award is named for Saga, the Norse goddess of history and prophecy. In giving the award for “tireless work to bring to light an alternate cultural narrative,” the ASWM board cited “Göttner-Abendroth’s lifelong passion…to research matriarchal societies and cultures, past and present. Her work has been a catalyst for international scholars and indigenous peoples to promote a new understanding of non-patriarchal modes of social organization.”
Göttner-Abendroth is the founder of Modern Matriarchal Studies and the International Academy Hagia for Matriarchal Studies and Matriarchal Spirituality in Bavaria. Her meticulous research demonstrates that matriarchies are egalitarian cultures based on gender equality and consensus decision-making. In 2005, Heide was nominated as one of 1000 Peace Women Across the Globe for the Nobel Peace Prize.