Anthropo-Linguistic Place of Women in the Igbo Society: Illustrations from Igbo Proverbs

  • Thecla Ngozi Udemmadu


In the Igbo world-view, women are seen as second class and subservient beings. This paper investigated the assertion and further inquiries the rationale behind the contention using Igbo proverbs as a yardstick. Through observation of native speakers’ speech events, deliberations with some Igbo native speakers and the researcher’s intuitive knowledge, data for the research were collected and analyzed using critical discourse analysis. After the analysis of data, some of the findings were that in Igbo cosmology, women are not equal to men; men are more equal than women. Therefore, the Igbo philosophy which is mirrored through their proverbs, places women in a position less than that of the men. Because proverb as an oral tradition is transmitted from one generation to another, the position of women in the Igbo society transcends from past to the present and to the future. It is the position of this paper that despite so many agitations by women to elevate their position, women will continue to be seen as less important until the psyche and orientation of the Igbo people about women are changed.

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 2227-5460
print ISSN: 2225-8604