Main Article Content

Tradition of Concubine Holding in Hausa Society (Nigeria), 1900 – 1930

Mutiat Titilope Oladejo


This paper examined the tradition of holding women as concubine in Muslim societies of the Hausa. Concubine holding changed the status of women and was acquired by slavery. This paper analysed concubine holding as a phenomenon that challenged female status in Hausa society. It put into perspective, the trajectories of concubine holding from the legends in the tradition of origin. It analysed the rights and privileges accrued to a concubine. And by the beginning of the twentieth century, the question of concubine holding was conveniently desirable under Islamic law and while the British law attempted to change the practices as part of efforts to abolish slavery. Thus, the paper contended that; concubine holding was part of the accepted norms in the sexual notions, which specifically privileged women to change their status and negotiate power in Hausa society. The paper adopted the historical approach by analysing court records, archival materials of the Nigerian National Archives, Kaduna, as well as books and journals relevant to the theme.

Keywords: Concubine holding, British law, Islamic law, Hausa society

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 2227-5452
print ISSN: 2225-8590