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About Laurie R. Godfrey

I am a biological anthropologist and paleontologist with interests in nonhuman primate anatomy and evolution. I study how individual development provides clues to behavior and to the "life history strategies" of extinct species. I use a variety of techniques to reconstruct the behavior and "lifeways" of extinct animals, with the ultimate goal of being able to reconstruct whole communities of primates in the past, and their transitions to the present. My particular expertise is the lemurs of Madagascar, where I have worked in the field for several decades. On this great island, I have worked with colleagues to better understand the recent extinctions of the "megafauna" (including the giant lemurs).


Present Professor Emeritus, Department of Anthropology, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Curriculum Vitae


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Honors and Awards

  • Samuel F. Conti Faculty Fellowship Award, In Recognition of Outstanding Research and Scholarship, University of Massachusetts, 2008-2009
  • Fellow, John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, 2008-2009
  • Award for Outstanding Accomplishments in Research and Creative Activity, University of Massachusetts Amherst, UMass Amherst Faculty Convocation, 2008
  • Award for Outstanding Accomplishments in Research and Creative Activtity, 2008
  • Fellow, Interdisciplinary Seminar in the humanities and Fine Arts 2007-2008
  • Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science 2004
  • Sigma Xi Distingguished Teaching Award 1997-1999
  • University of Massachusetts Distinguished Teaching Award, 1997-1998
  • Humanist Contributions to Science Award, American Humanist Association (47th Annual Conference, Dallas Texas, May) 1988
  • University of Massachusetts Presidential Writers' Award, Boston (Awarded by U. Mass President, David C. Knapp) 1985
  • American Association of University Woment Honorary Fellow, 1983-1984
  • Society of Sigma Xi, Tufts University. Summa Cum Laude in Scientia Orignum Cultus Humani, Tufts University, 1967
  • Society of Scholars, Tufts University (One of the top three GPS's in the class), 1996

Contact Information

Machmer Hall
240 Hicks Way
University of Massachusetts Amherst
Amherst, MA 01003
Tel: 413-545-2064 (office)
Tel: 413-253-5686 (home)
Fax: 413-545-9494


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