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India's choices | Women in West Africa

Posted by: Global Perspectives

Date: Tuesday, 09 April 2019

 

Editor's note

India is heading to the polls in the world’s largest democratic election – but could any of them oust incumbent BJP prime minister Narendra Modi and lead the country in a new direction? From dynast Rahul Gandhi to potential powerbroker Mamata Banerjee, Ian Hall highlights the ones to watch.

As women in Nigeria, Ghana, Togo and Benin get older, they are more able to make decisions independently of men. This is particularly the case if they belong to an ethnic group that practices voodoo - a religion that spread across West Africa with the expansion of the Dahomey kingdom in the 17th century - and if they are menopaused. Marijke Verpoorten and Alidou Sahawal attribute this age “dividend” to beliefs in magic and religion.

Matt Warren

Deputy Editor

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Beninese women attend a “voodoo” festival. Anton_Ivanov/Shutterstock

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