It’s A Woman’s World : Understanding Female Privilege

By Regina Agada

Female reading

The answer on whether female privilege exists or not has been a subject of heated conversations in both public and academic discourse. An even bigger problem exists in the misunderstanding on what privilege itself as a concept means, which has led to lack of uniformity in belief among people. While some scholars of gender agree that female privilege exists some are against the notion, that being at advantage in a particular situation does not equate being privileged.

Discussions surrounding Male and female privilege are oftentimes treated as a war among both genders which takes away key points raised during such conversations which sometimes leads to a dead end. In a patriarchal society like Nigeria; gestures such as buying of gifts, asking a lady out to dinner, helping out with household chores carried out by a man with the intent to make their significant other special are oftentimes seen as female privilege because the woman is on the receiving end.

Misconceptions on what female privilege is a discussion that needs to be held separately which may serve as a step towards the right direction.  In a typical Nigerian society; a woman while driving trying to manoeuvre during a traffic gridlock may upset a Male driver close to her triggering the typical response “just let her go she’s a woman” “ don’t argue with her she’s a woman” while similar responses may be made out of being respectful others are rooted in the perceived notion that women are the weaker sex hence it is pointless to argue with them. This scenario to those with little or no understanding of what female privilege is may see it as one.

While there is a major disagreement if female privilege exists or not, it really does exist but not the forms that people think they do. An older lady making sexually motivated comments at a young man in a bid to get his attention despite his refusal may just easily get a slap on the wrist compared to an older man doing the same to a young woman will attract a different reaction and response. However, the proportion to which female privilege exists compared to male privilege is minimal, which is due to the fact that the African society holds women to a different standard than they hold men. The African society is designed in a way that appeals more to male privilege and tending to their ego, being a woman you think twice before taking some actions because our society is not so forgiving of some actions carried out by women.

Being privileged isn’t wrong but using it as a form of oppression or making others feel uncomfortable isn’t the smartest thing to do. Despite numerous sexist jokes, being a woman gives one the privilege of being able to talk to other women on intimate issues which they may not want to share with the opposite sex because they feel that being a woman yourself helps create an understanding of their predicament which lends credence to the conversation.

Living in a male-dominated society as a woman comes with its struggles and challenges, the constant struggle to exert one’s rights and demand for respect coupled with various social and cultural limitations maybe sometimes exhausting; however being a woman in the African society is exciting as well as there are aspects of our society and cultures that appreciates us.

Featured Image : Goggle Images

Source: Above Whispers

Sign up for Updates

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Notify me of new posts by email.