Objectification, patriarchy and child marriage in dry- a film by Stephianie Linus
This paper aims at investigating the causes of child marriage in Nigeria and its consequences on the girl child and society at large using Stephanie Linus’s film; Dry as a case study. Objectification is the inhuman treatment of the feminine gender as mere objects or instruments of manipulation without giving consideration to their preferences and opinions. This trend which is common in Nigeria is worrisome due to the overbearing influence of patriarchy one of whose consequences is the forced marriage of adolescent and teenage girls to older men in their quinquagenarian, sexagenarians and septuagenarians. The study anchors on Womanism, and adopts a mixed method of Qualitative, Quantitative and Content analysis to discover the underlying motifs and images inherent in the movie understudy, as well as deduce facts from social respondents. The study thus concludes, that increased poverty rate, illiteracy, culture and tradition among others, is a causal factor behind this phenomenon and this has led to infections such as vesico vaginal (obstetric) fitsula due to forced expansion of the pelvic muscle, still birth, and in most cases death. Against this background, the study recommends that, government should embark on a nationwide campaign to curb this excesses and pass the forced early child marriage bill into law to check the menace. The paper further recommends that applied theatre Workshops through Theatre for Development should be taken to these villages/towns to enlighten, conscientise and re-orientate them about these practices. Civil society groups/org should also partner with health workers in the rural suburbs to embark on routine awareness and enlightenment on the aftereffect of such obsolete cultural practices.
Keywords: Objectification, Patriarchy, Child Marriage, Womanism, Intra-Subjugation.