Popular Women’s Magazines in Nigeria: A Study of Discourses of Gender in Identity Formation

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Popular Women’s Magazines in Nigeria: A Study of Discourses of Gender in Identity Formation

Type: Master thesis
Title: Popular Women’s Magazines in Nigeria: A Study of Discourses of Gender in Identity Formation
Author: Plessis, Danelle du
Issue Date: 2016-08-31
Keywords: African
Feminist
Media Studies
Nigeria
Women's magazines
Womanist
Gender
Interdisciplinary
Nigerian literature
Abstract: Given the success of African women’s literature in disseminating the African Womanist cause, this study examines popular Nigerian women’s lifestyle magazines to ascertain whether and in what ways they are able to reflect, reinforce or contradict the African feminist agenda.Taking an interdisciplinary approach applying qualitative content analysis from literary studies to the content and feature articles of two Nigerian women’s magazines, this study thematically analyzes discourses and practices of femininity in the Nigerian media. Viewed from the African Womanist perspective, this research illustrates that, contrary to the generalization that representations of women in the media are stereotypical and destructive to women, Nigerian women’s lifestyle magazines construct positive images of femininity. Women are portrayed as actively carving out spaces for more freedom of choice and achievement for themselves in work, marriage and motherhood as well as issues that pertain to gender equality and empowerment. Magazine discourse thus mirrors the African feminist agenda, affirming that women’s sectional media can act as vehicles for the positive identity formation of women. Through the application of methods and paradigms from African women’s literary studies to the media, this research contributes to the current shifts in methodological approaches to feminist media studies and provides an understanding of how the mass media can play a role in women’s empowerment.
Supervisor: Robbe, Ksenia
Faculty: Faculty of Humanities
Department: African Studies (Master)
Specialisation: African Studies
ECTS Credits: 15
Handle: http://hdl.handle.net/1887/42679
 

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