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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Matriarchy in tribal Buganda, Uganda
Author:Jjuuko, F.W.ISNI
Periodical:Journal of African Religion and Philosophy (ISSN 1018-8592)
Notes:biblio. refs., ills.
Geographic terms:Uganda
East Africa
Subjects:Ganda (Uganda)
Philosophy, Psychology
Traditional culture
Abstract:The status of women is determined by historical conditions and varies over time. Far from being naturally subordinated by men, women in all early societies took precedence. The author examines in broad outline the socioeconomic conditions that engendered matriarchy and matrilineal societies and the conditions that precipitated change, eclipsing mother right and bringing about the domination of men, viz. the rise of private property, class society and the State, and monogamous marriage. Using the example of precolonial Buganda, the author considers clans, totemism, and the evolution of forms of marriage as exhibited in the nomenclature of kinship, and relates these to the evolving status of women. A consideration of socioeconomic developments suggests that there must have been a complex of hunting and later agrarian clans. Such indigenous tribal society was likely to be matriarchal. Ritual and linguistic evidence suggests that originally the king was merely one of the queen's consorts and that he was eventually killed as part of a woman's ritual circle. Vestigial institutions such as that of the queen mother and the queen, various clan practices, such as the role of the paternal grandmother in the naming ceremony, and clan succession rites, as well as certain taboos and magic surrounding reproduction, further attest to matriarchy. App., notes, ref.