Polygyny In Sub-Saharan African Women Essay

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Polygyny, the practice of a man taking multiple wives, is a widely practiced form of marriage in Sub-Saharan Africa. Though it can be viewed as an indicator of fertility and elevated economic status, polygyny can affect African women socially, emotionally, and financially, often in a negative way. The articles “Polygyny: Did the Africans Get It Right?” by Cynthia Cook and “The Impact of Women’s Socioeconomic Position on Marriage Patterns in Sub-Saharan Africa” by Georgia Kaufmann and Dominique Meekers deal with the issues caused by polygyny in Sub-Saharan Africa. The articles demonstrate how African women from various backgrounds feel about polygyny and how they feel it affects their lives, and argue that its effects are more negative than…show more content…
She describes how the number of African American women electing to become single mothers is increasing, while their fertility rate has experienced a decrease. The drop in marriage rates is attributed to the lack of financially stable and available black men, thus encouraging African American women to get married and have children at lower rates. While white Americans seem to practice “serial monogamy,” the act of repeatedly entering and ending marriages and living in “blended-family households,” African Americans seem to be experiencing an increase in the number of children born to single women, from 66.7% in 1990 to 68.9% in 1999 (Cook, 1). Though it appears that the number of total children born has increased, it has in fact decreased, and the African American population in America grows at a slower rate, again, likely due to the unavailability of suitable black men for marriage and ability to support a growing family. The American social trend of monogamy prevents the black population in America from growing at a normal rate, leaving some healthy African American woman of childbearing age to resort to adoption or single

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