Why Missionary Position is a Man’s Position

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Okonkwo was inwardly pleased at his son’s development, and he knew it was due to Ikemefuna. He wanted Nwoye to grow into a tough young man capable of ruling his father’s household when he was dead and gone to join the ancestors. He wanted him to be a prosperous man, having enough in his barn to feed the ancestors with regular sacrifices. And so he was always happy when he heard him grumbling about women. That showed that in time he would be able to control his womenfolk. No matter how prosperous a man was, if he was unable to rule his women and his children (and especially his women) he was not really a man. He was like the man in the song who had ten and one wives and not enough soup for his pounded yam.

As the men ate and drank palm-wine they talked about the customs of their neighbours. “It was only this morning,” said Obierika, “that Okonkwo and I were talking about Abame and Aninta, where titled men climb trees and pound foo-foo for their wives.” “All their customs are upside-down. They do not decide bride-price as we do, with sticks. They haggle and bargain as if they were buying a goat or a cow in the market.”
“That is very bad,” said Obierika’s eldest brother. “But what is good in one place is bad in another place. In Umunso they do not bargain at all, not even with broomsticks. The suitor just goes on bringing bags of cowries until his in-laws tell him to stop. It is a bad custom because it always leads to a quarrel.” “The world is large,” said Okonkwo. “I have even heard that in some tribes a man’s children belong to his wife and her family.”
“That cannot be,” said Machi. “You might as well say that the woman lies on top of the man when they are making the children.”

Both paragraphs were lifted verbatim from Chapters Seven and Eight of the book “Things Fall Apart”. The literary novel was written by Nigerian author Chinua Achebe in 1958. The story’s main theme concerns pre- and post-colonial life in late nineteenth century Nigeria. It is seen as the archetypal modern African novel in English, one of the first to receive global critical acclaim (Wikipedia).

Emphasis for the purpose of this article is centered on two powerful beliefs and traditions of that particular Nigerian community in the late nineteenth century..
1. No matter how prosperous a man was, if he was unable to rule his women and his children (and especially his women) he was not really a man.
2. “You might as well say that the woman lies on top of the man when they are making the children.”

In African culture (Western culture have slowly eroded this belief system), a boy was built to grow into a tough young man capable of ruling his household especially his wife/wives, have absolute control over his children and take unrepetent charge when it comes to having sex. It can be inferred from the convesation above that women were not allowed to be ontop when having sex. It was a taboo. Something unheard of. The sex position now called cow girl or woman-on-top showed that the man was a weakling. It was unheard of. Women were supposed to be submissive. Lie down and wait for her husband to take charge while maintaining his position as the head of the family by staying untop of his wife. Never should she be untop during sex. Never.

But things have fallen apart………………….

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