Family Matters: Feminist Concepts in African Philosophy of Culture

Family Matters: Feminist Concepts in African Philosophy of Culture

by Nkiru Uwechia Nzegwu
     
 

Prior to European colonialism, lgboland, a region in Nigeria, was a nonpatriarchal, nongendered society governed by separate but interdependent political systems for men and women. In the last one hundred fifty years, the Igbo family has undergone vast structural changes in response to a barrage of cultural forces. Critically rereading social practices and oral and… See more details below

Overview

Prior to European colonialism, lgboland, a region in Nigeria, was a nonpatriarchal, nongendered society governed by separate but interdependent political systems for men and women. In the last one hundred fifty years, the Igbo family has undergone vast structural changes in response to a barrage of cultural forces. Critically rereading social practices and oral and written histories of Igbo women and the society, Nkiru Uwechia Nzegwu demonstrates how colonial laws, edicts, and judicial institutions facilitated the creation of gender inequality in Igbo society. Nzegwu exposes the unlikely convergence of Western feminist and African male judges' assumptions about "traditional" African values where women are subordinate and oppressed. Instead she offers a conception of equality based on historical Igbo family structures and practices that challenges the epistemological and ontological bases of Western feminist inquiry.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780791467435
Publisher:
State University of New York Press
Publication date:
02/01/2006
Series:
SUNY series, Feminist Philosophy Series
Pages:
329
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)

Table of Contents

Introduction : Igbo family structure and feminist concepts1
1Family politics : making patriarchy in a patrilineal society23
2Legalizing patriarchy : sorting through customary laws and practices63
3Customs and misrepresentations : widows and daughters in inheritance disputes103
4The conclave : a dialogic search for equality157
5Structures of equality : in mono- and dual-sex systems199
Conclusion : toward a balanced society241

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