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Society Effects On Gender Roles In Malawi

947 words - 4 pages

Society Effects On Gender Roles In Malawi

Ivy Tech Vocational Collage

The seventeenth and eighteenth century was a time of many struggles with many nations. Slave traders, immigrants and Christian missionaries where some of the troubles brought on by changes happening. While it was a time of change the Malawi people came together and formed this alliance of the Nyau . Mostly to form a resistance. Nyau appealed to the people because it brought their culture together instead of the quilted nature of the other cultures. Through the Nayu the Gule Wamkulu was founded they are a society of men . Chinamwali is a female society .
In the early twentieth century the Presbyterians and Catholics condemned the Nyau and the Chinamwali as heinous. Asking the native people to denounce both. People in charge of the ceremonies where uncertain of the future. Missionaries where questioning the ritual ceromines and the children not being in school. Giving the opinion that these children are coerced to join these groups a roadblock to their learning keeping them out of school. The government was asked to step in however , decided not to interfere in this matter .
Writing on the Nyau subject reports that the researcher Woods (1991/1992) for example ‘illustrates how lineage elders to establish a new hegemony that enabled them to control the lineage when other indigenous forms of authority nearly collapsed during the colonial era. “ Informing the reader that the Nyau was a strong force not easily broken or infiltrated. Through the course of time the Nyau had less of a need . Times had changed slavery was not as prevalent the immigration had elevated, however the missionaries remained , leaving them with less of a role . Kachapila (2006) “ in light of this lineage elders turned to Nyau as a potential means of retaining the allegiance of the young men. Influenced by other ideals and tempted by wages in more economically advanced areas of Malawi and beyond” Allowing all the males to become part of the Nyau instead of being a secret sect and giving a reason to stay in Malawi the unity of belonging.
Boys are iniated to the Nyau becoming men in their time honored fashion. They learn the puzzles of the encrypted messages and about the secrets that the Gule Wamkulu have. The youngest members are usually messengers and or guards. The main season for the Gule is in July . Young men dress like ancestral animals , or spitural ancestor masks .During their iniation they feel as if they are in there animal state no one approaches them during this time I so then money needs to be laid down so that the Gule will not grab you and take you to the cemetery . IN 1927 A.G.O HODGSON wrote “Initiaon of girls is a very old custom observed far earlier than Nyau ,but many things have ¬altered from the way they were done long ago .”
When women saw that men had gained importance with their dance old woman instructors ( anankungwi), asked the...

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