A lion was born and left without care by his lion-family for whatsoever reason. Fortunately for the young cub, he was found and adopted by a sheep family and then brought up in the tradition of sheep. Unfortunately for the lion his self-identity was that of a sheep. Thus he was scared by whatsoever scares sheep, including lions. He indeed trembled at the presence of lions. His life and manifestations were sheepish and inferior to that of lions, he was alienated from his dignity as a lion. Until he recognized that he had a universal resemblance with the lions that chased it when he suddenly took note of the reflection that appeared on the surface of the water while he went to drink and decided to not run at the sight of the lions that chased his company he was always molested. But when he realized his identity things changed….. Such was his life.
The story above serves as an analogical explanation for my take on the issue of female “inferiority” in the academic, social, economic and political sphere of Nigerian life.
It is quite true that we scarcely see women competing favorably with their male counterparts. It is also true that only a few women have achieved genius and greatness as much as men have and even above some male geniuses. It is also true that in our society today, men are allowed to manifest more brilliance, intelligence and excellence in things that are not sex-dependent. The statistics are obvious and no well-equipped feminist group should deny this reality. However, what is not true is the notion that this is biological or ingrained in the actual nature of females and something that only few genetic, physiological and neurological outliers can escape from i.e. those who have attained excellence as females. There is only a sociological account of “inferiority”.
This is to say that the inferiority manifested by women is learned and cultivated because of false ideologies and principles. Imagine that a child is born, whether male or female and is always told that she or he is worthless or lesser than other humans because that child uses his left hand as his major hand (a condition perceived to be a manifestation of inferiority by archaic standards), it is a rarity for such a child to turn out excellent or adequate in life. No one in the 21th century, in the progressed spirit of the age will consider the manifestation of inferior psychological and intellectual qualities of persons under such denigrating ideological upbringing a facticity of their lives.
The inferior qualities manifested by women are the things she has learned from childhood as exclusive to her nature and good for her to possess.
As growing children we remember that even extroversive boys were loquacious but society’s realization of the sublimity of no-plenty words and the notion that sublimity is an exclusive of the male sex, made parents, guardians and elderly ones to scolded the male children not to be loquacious because they were boys. They live the girls to be loquacious lifestyle because sublimity has been assumed to not be a part of the nature of the female sex. A further prove that most of this qualities attributed as exclusive to women that are not natural is the fact that boys that were not scolded for example become loquacious and act in the way stereotypical referred to as “womanly”. If both female and male children tend to express similar attributes in their childhood and only male children are scolded and told not to express this attributes because they are male, why will females not accept whatsoever common human childish trait, which society considers not noble and exclusive to them as the facticity of their being.
When a girl wants to lead (as the most competent person available) or wants to think and fend for herself, she is stopped and cautioned not to delve into the exclusive reserve of boys. How do you expect such class to keep developing that part of them which has been stopped from manifesting? Why will she not grow to view herself inferior?
Like the lion who was trained in the tradition of sheep and by default of that training acted like a sheep, most of the women acting inferior and doing inferior things in the stereotypic female inferior kind of way, act so because they have been trained to.
Therefore when it is said that women should be given equal opportunity and equal attention, it is not a function of unrealistic thinking- it is not an oversight of the nature of women. The reality is that women are as human as men and in our difference we possess equipollent worth of competitive niche. The feminist and all advocates of equal opportunity have no confusion about the nature of females, they know what is happening and they understand why.
All females who realize their true dignity as the lion did, will definitely be reunited to the dignity of being a human, having dropped all denigrating ideologies of femininity.
What I want to achieve with this exposition is to fight the ideological oppression against femininity that is existing in our society. Secondly, it justifies the quest to restore dignity to those whom it is denied.
I really do not want you all to change your perception of the facticity of the female nature all I enjoin you to do is to engage your mind in a whole new way in rethinking your long held mainstream perception.
What will it mean to you if you discover that all the stereotypic female based inferiority manifested by women are forced on them by a false ideology?
Gideon Onah is an advocate for a balanced/just society. In order to achieve this, he writes and speaks in a manner deviod of the current mainstream academic obfuscation of ideas with words and concepts, in order to have practical effect on the lives of his audience.