The Changing Conception of Elderhood in Ibadan, 1830-2000

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Adeboye, O.
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Nordic Journal of African Studies
This article investigates the changes in the local conception of elderhood and the deployment of the idiom of age in Ibadan. It identifies the factors responsible for the changes: namely, militarism and patronage (in the nineteenth century), Western education, individual affluence, colonial and post-colonial state power (in the twentieth century). It argues that not only did these factors circumscribe ‘elderly authority’ and status, they also served as metaphors of seniority, which enabled individuals and groups utilising them to appropriate for themselves some degree of respect hitherto considered the prerogative of ‘elders’. The idiom of age thus became a mechanism for naturalizing power. The paper concludes that despite several modifications and challenges, this idiom has remained relevant not only in interpreting and structuring power relationships, but also as a weapon, which is often used negatively in political contests in contemporary Yoruba, and by extension, Nigerian politics.
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Conception , Changing , Elderhood , Ibadan , Research Subject Categories::HUMANITIES and RELIGION::History and philosophy subjects::History subjects::History
Adeboye, O.A. (2007). The Changing Conception of Elderhood in Ibadan, 1830-2000, Nordic Journal of African Studies, (Helsinki, Finland),16 (2), 261-278.