Maasai society is one of the most respected and well-known societies in Africa as well as abroad. It has been able to retain its culture and traditions for decades after decades, nevertheless not all that glitters is gold; some of its traditions and culture have been suppressing women at large.
Maasai women are the ones responsible for taking care of the family and the execution of the daily activities yet they are still considered as items and nothing but a property to a man.
Female Genital Mutilation which is also known as female circumcision is largely practiced by the Maasai community. Most girls are circumcised just before entering puberty, which is between the age 11 and 13. This has proven to have so many negative health effects some of them include; problems during giving birth, the loss of blood during and even after the process. The tools that are sometimes used are not scientifically proved and are not up to the standards hence cost people’s lives. Female circumcision hinders sexual pleasure and makes it hard for women to reach the climax.
Women are the ones doing all the work such as feeding the family, taking care of cattle, fetching fire woods, water and many more. Apart from doing all this, they do not own any property; all properties belong to a man. It’s pretty sad since Women are the ones striving in attaining all those but ultimately the man is the one rejoicing the wealth in large-scale. Once the cattle are sold the money belongs to a man, if slaughtered all the good and soft parts are eaten by men while the hard and weak parts are for women.
The women give birth to at least 8 children in which during pregnancy they are excluded from heavy work, and also from sex are not allowed. She has no say to any matter in the society, whatever her husband say it is a must to follow. She builds her own hurt where she lives with her children.
Girls are sent off to their husband right after circumcision. The man with the highest or agreed amount of bride price gets the girl regardless of the man’s age or the wives he possess in his backyard.The woman is not only just married to her sole man but to the entire age mates of the family. Women are not allowed to divorce, incase it happens which is very rare like in situations of very severe abuse or scorned off the limit then they are not allowed to be remarried and Incase of the husband’s death they are inherited by the brother of the husband and it keeps on going like that just like the chain reaction.
Women in this society give birth to a number of children and during pregnancy they are excluded from heavy works, in which I find very positive but also they are not allowed to have sex. No say to any matter in the society even those related to her, she has to obey what her husband says and on top of all she has to build her own hut where she can live with her children.