By Oyèrónkẹ́ Oyĕwùmí (eds.)

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Extra resources for Gender Epistemologies in Africa: Gendering Traditions, Spaces, Social Institutions, and Identities

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The multifaceted ways in which European colonization affected different groups of Africans has been well documented; the uneven effects of colonial policies across the states carved out by the European exploiters are well known. Mahmood Mamdani writes eloquently about the multilayered nature of the colonial state, which meant that the task of decolonizing for Africans at the moment of independence had to be equally complex if it were to be effective. He writes: “The core agenda that African states faced at independence was threefold: deracializing society, detribalizing the Native Authority, and developing the economy in the context of unequal international relations” (1996, 287).

Oník†k† logún 3. Alágbàjà lgb’n 4. Oníkolo làádta 5. A díá fún “dúnm ` bákú 6. Tí í ‘m bíbí Àgbnnìrègún 7. Wn ní ó rúb nítorí ikú 8. Ó ‘e é 9. Ikú ò pà á 10. “dún m ` bá kú 11. Eji† ti gbád쇆 mi l 12. Ad쇆 mi 13. Adìerànà 14. Tí mo fi’í l† 15. Leji† gbé l 1. S/he said (my translation because Abimbola did not translate this line) 2. He who has k†k† facial marks has 20 markings 3. He who has àbàjà facial marks has 30 markings 4. He who has kóló facial marks has 50 markings 5. Ifá divination was performed for “dúnm´bákú 6.

That is another question. So, indeed, Yorùbá 101 for everyone, since the language that so powerfully conveys ways to talk to the gods is being appropriated and used to exclude, change the past, and recreate the world in ways that are antithetical to Ifá values and traditions. By all means, let the mothers reclaim the mother tongue. By the end of the session, I realized that some other scholars were already taking sides. One person accused me of saying that in Yorùbá language literacy, tones and diacritics do not matter.

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