GENDER ROLES in Igbo Culture

Source: Laura Ziese

Gender Roles can be very controversial, causing riots and movements standing against it present day. However, Gender roles can become important when they're a massive part of one’s culture like they are in the Igbo Tribe.

Source: The 1960s Feminist Movement

In a tribe like this one, Gender roles play a huge part in each life everyday. Women are expected to cook, clean & obey their husbands at any cost.

While men are expected to farm, hunt & usually earn a high title in the village

Things Fall Apart

By Chinua Achebe

Source: Michelle Sohn & Ann Waters-Bayer


Men had many wives and were expected to be strong, masculine & be able to control their wives and children.

Source: Matthew Weymer

As said before, women had specific roles, duties & even a certain order they were expected to do things

For example, if a man's second wife wanted to eat or drink but the first wife was not there, the second cannot eat or drink until the first wife arrived and did so first.

"Women in Pre-Colonial Nigeria" Rojas, Maria.

Source: Salome Nnoromele


With the introduction of western education and Christianity, it opened up opportunities for them to learn how to read and write in the new social structure and status.

Source: Biafranqueen

With new advancements in their social structure, women were respected and given many roles in politics.

Although women weren't forced to just being housewives, mothers were mainly responsible for passing forward the Igbo culture to her children.

"Women & Religion in Africa" Brenman, Vicki

Source: Adire Clara

Women no longer had a definite say in who they wanted to marry and also could not inherit any wealth from their fathers.

"Women & Religion in Africa" Brenman Vicki

Source: Salome Nnoromele

Overall, Igbo tribe was greatly impacted by British Colonial Missionaries. Not only in their social structure and gender roles, but also trade, advancement in religion and advancement in language and arts.

Source: Biafranqueen


Nadia Bugarini

Mary Contreras

Works Cited

"Masculinity in Nigeria: Rebellion vs. Conformity and Power." HASTAC. Web. 24 Mar. 2017.

Brenman, Vicki. "Women & Religion in Africa." Women Religion in Africa. University of Vermont. 13 Mar. 2013. Web. 23 Mar. 2017

Nwabunnia, Onyeka Antoinette "It's a Man World's" but Mothers Make Kings and Daughter Become Queens: The Politics of Power in "Democratic" Nigeria" Web. Mar. 24 2017

"CRL Resources on 19th-Century Christian Missionary Work in Africa." CRL. Web. 23 Mar. 2017.

Achebe, Chinua. Things Fall Apart. New York: Anchor, 2009. Print

Nd'Igbo, Sylvia. "Igbo Women and Socail Status" IGBO- Culture, Traditions, History. 13 Apr. 2012. Web. 23 Mar. 2017.

Rojas, Maria. "Women in Pre-Colonial Nigeria." Web. 23 Mar. 2017

Created By
Mary Contreras

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