Indigenous People

Topics: Colonialism, Africa, African Union Pages: 6 (2354 words) Published: July 2, 2013
Women, in general have a very important role in the society. If women had not existed, human would not be on Earth today. They are to be treated very respectfully everywhere on the planet. One of the most valuable treasures in the world was being menaced and still is nowadays, and this is the torture of women. This is happening everywhere in the world, in every corner, either it a very rich country or a very poor one. We would think that slavery is extinct because the country is no more ruled by Europeans, but it is not true, since slavery has always existed and always will, especially in indigenous women’s cases, one of the most hardworking women society ever existed. This is what my paper is based on: Indigenous Women’s Right and the Effects of Colonization. This topic was chosen because it is sad to see how women were badly treated in the older generations, in the indigenous world as well as how today their lifestyle has not improved, but has worsen tremendously over a short lap of period. Different times of period are shown about their lifestyle, such as the history of African women and colonization, their rights prior to the colonization, and finally, the effect of Colonialism on Indigenous African Women.

The History of Indigenous African women and Colonization
The Europeans have been in contact with African Societies since the 1880’s, but mostly, over the past centuries, it has been the British who ruled the most part of the African countries. During the aggressive period of colonization, the Europeans have aimed to take possession of every single country; likewise they also tried to take possession of the African continent. During the 1880’s, African countries were dominated by the Europeans: it was the indigenous women of Africa who suffered the most. According to Jeremie Gilbert (2011), the indigenous communities were forced from ancestral lands by the Europeans. It is shown how the colonial law, which was new to the indigenous people and placed by the Europeans prevented them from accessing land. The Europeans did not even have the permission of the land owners. This law of no access to their land which was implemented by the British was the invention of a rule by a person who then orders all the communities to follow. In this case, the Europeans imposed new laws for all the African population. With these new laws, women’s lives changed. The colonial laws created greater imbalance between men and women in these indigenous African societies. Abdulraheem Nimah Modupe(1995) gives an example that indigenous women in Nigeria were regarded as being housewives under the invented law.

According to Elisa Scalise (2012), aside from the indigenous women’s having their property painfully snatched away from them, they also went through abuse in order to satisfy unmarried men. While walking between villages, the risk of danger increased as those indigenous women were getting raped, mentally and physically assaulted by British security forces. As opposed to their job, the governments of African countries were not doing anything to prevent it from happening (Scalise, 2012). The loss of the lands meant a loss of access and a loss of authority. Indigenous women were unable to nourish their families with the necessities, as there were no more crops to feed them as they got their land snatched away (Modupe, 1995). For example indigenous women from Batwa in Uganda who had tradition role of “beast of burden,” (Modupe, 1995), had to walk miles to be able to gather the food needed for the famished family members (Scalise,2012). Having lost their rights, they became accustomed to asking each and every single thing to their husband for permission before proceeding. This intensified the importance of men in indigenous women’s lives. “In some cases, an indigenous woman is viewed as being there to bear children, to serve her father, her brother and later her husband and her in laws. She cannot inherit...
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