What is Polygamy and Why It Makes Sense

The case would be made that having numerous wives would ensure that the household would have a lot of children and several homesteads that could share work and resources.

What is Polygamy and Why It Makes Sense
Photo by Derek Oyen / Unsplash

Polygamy is an age-old practice that involves a man marrying several wives. It is an aspect of culture that has been part of numerous societies and communities for centuries. Famous polygamists include Fela Kuti, the legendary Nigerian musician who had twenty-seven wives. Polygamy is an issue of heated contention as marriage is no walk in the park. Polygamy is still practiced today by several communities and has been increasingly controversial, especially when coupled with practices such as wife inheritance.

Polygamy in Traditional African Society

Traditional African society allowed polygamy as it became seen as a way for men of means to ensure that they leave a legacy. In the twentieth century, the more the children one had, the more respected they were. Children were seen and appreciated as a blessing. Polygamy would ensure that the patriarch would have a lot of children. It was very beneficial as a lot of children would ensure that the household would have enough labor. Also, having many daughters at the time would attract a lot of endowments. It is not an insinuation that children became had for that sole purpose, but I would love to think of it as an added advantage.