Mother Is Gold, Father Is Glass: Gender and Colonialism in a Yoruba Town

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November 2010



Lorelle D. Semley explores the historical and political meanings ofmotherhood in West Africa and beyond, showing that the roles of women were far morecomplicated than previously thought. While in K tu, B nin, Semley discovered thatwomen were treasurers, advisors, ritual specialists, and colonial agents in additionto their more familiar roles as queens, wives, and sisters. These women with specialinfluence made it difficult for the French and others to enforce an ideal ofsubordinate women. As she traces how women gained prominence, Semley makes clear whypowerful mother figures still exist in the symbols and rituals of everydaypractices.


Preface: "You Must Be From Here": An Intellectual and Personal Journey; Acknowledgments; Note on Orthography and Language Prologue: "Mother is gold, father is glass": Power and Vulnerability in Atlantic Africa; 1. Founding Fathers and Metaphorical Mothers: History, Myth, and the Making of a Kingdom; 2. How Kings Lost Their Mothers: Politics of the Atlantic Slave Trade; 3. Giving Away Ketu's Secret: Wives on the Eve of War; 4. "Where women really matter": The "Queens" of Ketu and the Challenge to French Imperialism; 5. "Without family ... there is no true colonization": Perspectives on Marriage; 6. "The Opening of the Eyes": The Politics of Manhood on the Eve of Independence; 7. Mothers and Fathers of an Atlantic World; Epilogue: A Rebirth of "Public Mothers" and Kings Essay on Sources and Methodology; Notes; Bibliography; Index


Lorelle D. Semley is Assistant Professor in the Department of History at Wesleyan University. Her work has been published in Encyclopedia of Women and Islamic Cultures and she is a contributor to Crossing Memories: Slavery and African Diaspora (forthcoming).


"A book that will be of great interest to Africanist historians, anthropologists, and others who want to learn more about gender relations on the continent." Misty Bastian, Franklin & Marshall College "Focuses on metaphors and realities of women's power, secular and religious, and how power is exercised as public motherhood." Edna Bay, Emory University "[Author Lorelle D.] Semley provides historical depth and historiographical sophistication to this study of Yoruba women in West Africa and the Atlantic World." - The International Journal of African Historical Studies "Mother Is Gold, Father Is Glass is a wonderful contribution to the literature on gender, African women, French colonialism, and the African diaspora." - Judith A. Byfield, H-Africa, December 2012
EAN: 9780253222534
ISBN: 0253222532
Untertitel: Sprache: Englisch.
Erscheinungsdatum: November 2010
Seitenanzahl: 235 Seiten
Format: kartoniert
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