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Book chapter Book chapter Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue
Title:A Nigerian Sisterhood in the Transformation of Female Identity
Author:Shebi, EstherISNI
Book title:Transforming female identities: women's organizational forms in West Africa
Geographic term:Nigeria
Subjects:Christian orders
social inequality
Cultural Roles
Sex Roles
Abstract:Our Lady of Fatima Sisters (OLFS) of Jos, founded in 1965, is an indigenous group of religious women brought together from different parts of Nigeria to share a common charism of general missionary work. Although the female in Nigeria is currently defined mainly in terms of wife and mother, the nuns and sisters in the group, while identifying themselves as women to the core, profess the three religious vows of chastity, poverty and obedience. In the context of their identity, life style and apostolates they face a number of challenges, including that of living out their female sexuality and celibacy in a culture that questions celibate credibility, of discerning and prioritizing the needs of those around them, and of empowering women in the face of male power and domination. The author, herself a member of the OLFS congregation, includes a case study of rural Birom women in Kuru village, Plateau State. The case study shows the ways in which the women in Kuru are striving to enhance their identity, the impact of women's organizations, particularly the Catholic Zumunta Mata organization, on their social, economic, religious and political life, and the impact of OLFS apostolic strategies on the transformation of Kuru female identity. Notes, sum. in French.