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<i>Umuada</i> and the Phenomenon of Dual Identity in Ogbaruland

E A Maduagwu


The Igbo is a patriarchal society but despite this, the association of indigenous women of some Igbo communities known as Umuada continues to exert influence in their patrilineal homes even after the exchange of identity through marriage; and despite their new roles as ndiomu (association of wives) in their consanguine communities. This results in a phenomenon of dual identity, significantly different from parallel Igbo sub-cultural groups. Several studies have been carried out on the contribution of the Umuada to their communities, especially in the economic and social spheres. However, there is a dearth of information on the formal structure of authority within which women carry out these activities especially in relation to their identities. This study examines the motivation for this recognition of the woman in a patriarchal culture and the patriarchal agenda is examined. Information on the role of women in indigenous and contemporary Igbo society is provided and findings reveal the dual identity of women in this region and the implications for intra-communal relation dynamics.

Keywords: Igbo, Ogbaru, Umuada, Identity

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eISSN: 2227-5460
print ISSN: 2225-8604