It is certainly the case that such relationships are common in southeastern Nigeria while it would be a mistake to assume that all menвЂ™s extramarital sexual behavior takes the form of so called sugar daddy relationships, where young women are perceived to participate in sexual relationships with older married men for economic gain, or to suppose that young unmarried womenвЂ™s sexual relationships can be completely subsumed under this label (Luke 2005. A few of the characteristics that are typically glossed both in educational and popular Nigerian interpretations beneath the label associated with sugar daddy occurrence accurately characterize top features of the relationships between younger unmarried females and older hitched male fans. Age and economic asymmetry function prominently in both Nigerian discourse about womenвЂ™s premarital sexuality and married menвЂ™s infidelity plus in the particular intimate landscape. But even yet in sugar daddy plans, the motivations of both women and married guys are frequently multifaceted. Although married men who cheat on their spouses with young solitary females are undoubtedly searching for intercourse, my interviews and findings declare that menвЂ™s motives are linked to a variety of aspirations associated with the performance of social course while the enactment of socially rewarded masculinity for male peers (Smith 2007a, 2008).
But this kind of interpretation misses their education to which, for a lot of women that are young the capability to use their sex for strategic objectives practical knowledge as agentive. In past research, We worked extensively with unmarried people that are youngSmith 2003, 2004a, 2004b). Numerous unmarried women plainly viewed their sex as a resource that is positive never as a thing that demeaned them. In a culture where everybody free group sex faces significant hurdles to attaining their social and financial goals, womenвЂ™s sexual agency offers numerous desired advantages, including possibilities to carry on advanced schooling, use of work, while the capacity to assist kin. Certainly, the young ladies who are usually to be hitched menвЂ™s lovers in sugar daddy relationships aren’t the poorest associated with the bad, dealing intercourse for financial assistance as a result of abject poverty, but rather an even more educated and stylish group who will be more disposed to see on their own as agentive.
The task why these young ladies face is the fact that even they must ultimately navigate the marriage market, where society in general and men in particular have different expectations for what they want in a woman as they are able to utilize their sexual desirability to meet educational, economic, and social goals. Igbo culture expects a spouse to be faithful to her spouse and dedicated to her young ones. The idea that a young woman has been something of a free sexual agent, utilizing her body for economic purposes, or even just for her own pleasure, contradicts the ideal typical image of a good wife for most men. In addition, the increasingly shared expectation that wedding must be according to intimate love is significantly in conflict with a far more notion that is strategic of sex. As a result, young unmarried women can be traversing a complex landscape before wedding, while they look for some intimate lovers for solely financial purposes while also keeping an eye fixed away for a love match, or at the least a guy whom could compatibly confer the status of spouse and mom. Just exactly How females guide through these perilous currents and just how they go through the transformation from agentive single girl to constrained wife, to the stage where a husbandвЂ™s philandering is frequently tacitly tolerated, offers a revealing screen onto the unfolding of sex characteristics into the context of modern southeastern NigeriaвЂ™s habits of change to marriage.
This paper attracts on a lot more than a dozen many years of ethnographic fieldwork in southeastern Nigeria and particularly on two studies: one that analyzed the aftereffects of rural migration that is urban the intimate behavior of adolescents and unmarried teenagers and another that focused on married womenвЂ™s risk of HIV disease. The very first research addressed exactly just how young peopleвЂ™s intimate behavior had been affected by the difficulties of modification to life that is urban. The next study, called вЂњLove, Marriage, and HIV,вЂќ examined the complex intersection between changing marital ideals and practices as well as the effect of those changes on gendered sexual behavior, specially menвЂ™s infidelity. My Nigeria research ended up being element of a more substantial relative ethnographic project in that I also had peers employed in Mexico, Papua New Guinea, Uganda, and Vietnam (Hirsch et al. 2007, 2009; Parikh 2007; Wardlow 2007; Phinney 2008). 1