Changing Patterns of Yoruba Parenting in Nigeria

  • Emmanuel D. BabatundeEmail author
  • Kelebogile Setiloane
Part of the Science Across Cultures: The History of Non-Western Science book series (SACH, volume 7)


This chapter explores the patterns of Yoruba parenting, beginning with the process of marriage, childbearing and rearing, into relief the importance of wife as a mother, it briefly compares the persona of the wife with that of the concubine. Yoruba parenting is presented as the gradual socialization of the child in the values, expectations and practices of adult Yoruba life. Parenting efforts gradually allow the child to imbibe, through enculturation, the fundamental wisdom behind adult views about life, its challenges, its triumphs and failures. The first principle of this parenting style is making the child understand that she is part of a group that cares and expects respect in return. The second principle is that the child becomes gradually aware of the template of socialization known as Omoluwabi. It teaches her to be deferential to her elders, hardworking and frugal as well as to be ready to help others in need. The values, norms, rules and cosmology that the child learns stress the importance of seniority as an organizational principle. She is taught that her humanity is affirmed by the reciprocity of care from others. The chapter ends on the comparative analysis of styles of parenting between the Japanese concept of Amae and the Batswana concept of Botho as they replicate the Yoruba concept of Omoluwabi.


Good Person Japanese Parenting Protein Source Food Deferred Gratification Polygynous Household 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Sociology and AnthropologyLincoln UniversityChesterUSA
  2. 2.Department of Behavioral Health and NutritionUniversity of DelawareNewarkUSA

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