Sex and the Empire That Is No More: Gender and the Politics of Metaphor in Oyo Yoruba Religion

J. Lorand Matory

The form and role of orisa-worship among the West Africa Yoruba has changed during the past two centuries in ways correlated with the changing overall political system. The relationships between men and women have provided two majors sorts of metaphor for the healthy and orderly relationship between gods and humans, rulers and subjects. The ritual metaphors invoked by priests and rulers have, in turn, transformed the quotidian relationships between men and women.