Romance Writers Of West Africa (RWoWA)

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Romance novels challenging tradition in Northern Nigeria

Appeared in NBCNews

KANO, Nigeria (AP) — Nestled among vegetables, plastic kettles and hand-dyed fabric in market stalls are the signs of a feminist revolution: Piles of poorly printed books by women that advocate forcefully against conservative Muslim traditions such as child marriage and quick divorce.

They are part of a flourishing literary movement centered in the ancient city of Kano, in northern Nigeria, where dozens of young women are rebelling through romance novels. Hand-written in the Hausa language, the romances now run into thousands of titles. Many rail against a strict interpretation of Islam propagated in Nigeria by the extremist group Boko Haram, which on Sunday posted video showing dozens of the 218 girls militants abducted from a remote school in April 2014.

“We write to educate people, to be popular, to touch others’ lives, to touch on things that are happening in our society,” says author Hadiza Nuhu Gudaji, whose views have gained a recognition unusual for women in her society.

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2 thoughts on “Romance novels challenging tradition in Northern Nigeria

  1. A definite eye-opener, and reality check. Women in most societies live with an ongoing struggle to be treated fairly. But some of us take for granted what we do have, and forget that no matter how oppressed we may feel, there women in cultures who will never realize the same ‘progress’.

    Liked by 1 person

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