Sociological Analysis of the Changing Patterns of Inheritance and Succession in Traditional African Society

Ishor, David Gever, Anzaku, Edward Dauda Ibrahim, Idyorough, Solata Mdei, Nwanan, Istifanus Samuel


This paper examines the changing patterns of inheritance and succession in traditional African societies. The paper shows that patrilineal and matrilineal principles were vital issues in the discussion of inheritance and succession in Africa prior to colonialism. It further argued that colonial laws and doctrines obfuscate inheritance and succession rights in Africa because of its often contradictory provisions and this have implication for poverty, gender inequality and intra-familial conflicts. The paper also shows how this colonial contradiction is further compounded by rapid urbanisation and population growth. Conclusive, the paper shows how these patterns of changes are likely to lead to an erosion of the inheritable base of land assets in Africa and also put specific groups particularly in vulnerable positions.

Keywords: Inheritance, succession, change, tradition, society.

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ISSN (Paper)2224-5766 ISSN (Online)2225-0484

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