THE STATUS OF WOMEN IN KETU MYTHS AND ITS SOCIOLOGICAL RAMIFICATIONS
E. D. Babatunde(School of Social Work , University of Maryland at Baltimore)
In this paper, Yoruba myths of origin and Ketu Yoruba myths of migration are studied. In line with Leach’s orientation, In Genesis as Myth, structuralism is employed to unearth the deep structural meaning generated by the components of the myths as a communication’s structure. It is suggested that the myths are commentaries on dominance of one sex over another, the preference of exogamy over endogamy and the strength of the female sex as far as the rituals and symbols show.
More pointedly, the paper asserts that in order to achieve the necessary mobilization of African women for social action in the developmental effort in Contemporary Africa, some of the efforts must be directed at the salient aspects and traits of culture which served as vehicles for transmitting the male-oriented ideology of female inferiority. Those same traits ought to be re-examined and re-interpreted at a higher level of intellectual abstraction to communicate the significance of the roles of women in the scheme of things. This will lead to a balance so that emphasis on the patterns of male/female relationship will shift from dominance and mutedness of one sex over another to complementarity of the sexes.
Yoruba women, Myths, Development, Culture reinterpretation, Africa