The #MeToo Movement in Northern Nigeria: A Collusion of Islam, Culture, and Modernity
The incursion of the #MeToo movement into the ultra-conservative, deeply religious, and fanatically moralistic shores of Northern Nigeria was unexpected. When women tweeted about their sexual abuses using the hashtag #ArewaMeToo, they used the liberal mechanism of social media to make their voices heard, globally. And because their voices were not supposed to be heard as the conservatism and Islamic edicts of northern Nigeria dictate that women are supposed to be invisible and silent, hearing them on Twitter became a threat to established societal, religious, gerontocratic, and patriarchal norms. The berating and victim-shaming of survivors using Islamic and cultural tenets is examined in this study as a basis of contextual analysis. It premised that it was not only what was said that was “modern” and riling up established norms in the north, but who was saying it and through which means.
Medinat Abdulazeez Malefakis is a postdoctoral researcher at the Migration, Integration, Transnationalization research unit. She received her doctorate from the Nigerian Defense Academy and the University of Zurich.
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