Dayspring Olusanya


I recently wrote a write-up on gender equality and quality education as a palliative measure for impostor syndrome. Basically, the write-up calls for a look into quality education and gender equality from the grassroots or family/communal levelfurther calls for the inclusivity of women in all gatherings that matters, and that helps shape the world and add to knowledge(there has been some progress on this[1]).

While the write-up lauds some government provisions targeted at tackling gender equality, it also advocates for proactiveness in orientating people on the adverse effect of gender inequality than waiting for the hands of the law to fully descend on the culprits. The write-up recognizes it will probably take years of talking to reorient people on the latter (gender equality) because of deeply rooted and long-standing cultural biases. It however proposes that huge steps, as opposed to baby steps,be taken towards achieving quality education and gender equality (huge steps is probably preferable but broken down into baby achievable steps for implementation).

The write-up also noted the world is already on a scale of serious imbalance and it will help if the burden of impostor syndrome which can be aggravated by lack of access to quality education and discrimination caused by gender inequality is removed. The write-up further advocates that inclusive and equitable access to quality education coupled with gender equality and empowerment of all women and girls would help achieve some sort of balance in him the imbalancedworld he write-up ended on a note thatinnovation is birthed when the imposter syndrome pandemic is reduced to itsminimum and innovation help thee economy thrive.

 I have had some bit of more exposure since then and hence this new write-up. 

Gender equality is a sensitive issue. For instance, in a multi-cultural environment where you have Muslims, Traditionalists Christians, Actors, ‘Watchers’ who use different timezones; it’s quite difficult to claim equality unless there can be some sort of uniform template that can be achieved. But then that begs the question how can that uniform template be achieved in a country of about 200 million population?

Let me try telling this with a story. Thomas came from a typical Muslim and royal family. Needless to say,Thomas is a strong believer in the polygamous family arrangement where the man leads and the woman is the subject(contrary views are welcomed).

Peju on the other handis a Christian that holds the Christian split view in relation to this, that is -the man should lead or both the man and the woman should lead but decide who would be the captain per time.[2]

Julie however holds the actor’s views -those who play any role that suits them be it holding the Christian view today or just the watcher’s view.

Lastly, Biola holds the watcher’s view which is quite similar  the actor’s view using the timezones of any country they deem fit.

In a country with these categories of persons, it is not so easy to talk about gender equality -as it is just like a coat it can be worn anyway you want it. Peju’s view is quite similar to the western culture which supports the equality of both males andfemales acknowledges that both are important with each having different roles to play wheno should be the captain. In my opinion,this view is good for leadership positions. It could also be a subtle painted-picture way of punishing rapists (this should not be made the major punishment though). Might sound funny but I picture a male-dominated scenario where they are grouped in twos, each made to play the role of a man and woman strictly within the western context, the one representing the female folks would lead and made not to marry as this would be against the rule (this is just a love-religious mind talking, the Nigerian northerners seem to have better-suited punishments) till he is tired of playing that role and get an actual female or another male-female like him. So more like a reverse of the old system of a female made to play the male role before they get published.

But then feminist may argue otherwise on the ground that that is being economical with the truth (but hey I think it’s a bit of a leafy palliative measure aimed towards healing from past hurts of suppressing the female folks so the latter can be better positioned to address bigger issues like how you want to tell the King of your town that they should start crowning deserving female folks while your learningsare along another line! Or telling the typical area boys that their wives are equal to them, they simply would bypass tender equality and start child marriage!). Questions as to situations where the rapist is married may also arise. At the end of the day, it is important to determine who a man and a woman are (probably probe further in what capacity they are choosing to act when they are about assuming leadership positions) I think it all starts with changing the mindset first with an orientation before attempting bigger issues.

How would this solve impostor syndrome? Women get to know they have a say even when it is not “women/female” that is there in the general sense of the word. So bringing it back to the story I once shared, it will no longer be a case of an ordinary girl beat you but a case of you was beaten by an actual female and not even a boy acting the role of a girl. So more like you waited for the real deal to cometto be atatatwithout practicing your studies with your male mate? I know this is open to confusion bthethe ender inequality problem first has to start with the mindset and this may just be the starting point(the palliative measure needed to put the mind in an active state before delving into deeply rooted biases).

Personally,I am drawing the curtain here on gender equality, does it mean I will not stand up for what is right from time to time even if it’s just in writing or by voice or simply by listening? I am pretty sure I will.

My main issue now is quality education! Building on the story I once shared about a young girl who though her brilliance, still had unexplainable impostor syndrome. The build-up to this is based on an observation made by a lecturer and also from my own personal observation. By his observation, he said it is quite difficult for a person from the village to make it as it takes extra effort to do so.

For instance, Ema came up from a humble background and a village, he luckily met an uncle who is very sensitive to sound and works around with the Uncle. He graduated but does not really know how to translate his knowledge into practical use. Does it mean he did not read or he is a dullard? I think not, I think he infact did but probably had to deal with “forced patience”from irregular light supply, hiccups from inhaling generator fumes,  frustration from lack of access to a good technology, going to the stream/well to do some energy work of drawing water out and then washing his clothes(you cannot particularly call the latter laundry more like labour), battle headshakes from noise pollution his environment emits, breathing difficulties from the accumulated dirts from the environment, feeding corn to the cock (though he said he enjoys this) chestpain from figuring out where his next meal will come from after he could not sell the pepper and yam he had to walk down the road to sell or just from the fear of what the world would think of his other daring decisions,feeding corn to the cock (though he said he enjoys this) etc that he became blind to see the beauty in his readings but rather focused on surviving to have an academic paper that will automatically solve his problems when in actual fact the beauty in the reading may be the solution while the academic paper the beautiful icing on the fluffy and tasty cake of the reading.

Talking with some bit of some more exposure,  while impostor syndrome is one that affects almost everyone, villagers own may be quite more serious especially the fragile ones (not everyone is rugged and this is not even a gender issue). My more informed suggestion will be an inclusive, mentorship-fostering and friendly environment. By inclusive, I mean using paintings, artwork, food, laundry-type of house chores, music to teach students including training them to lament using these tools (its more productive, the vulnerable, easily distracted and fragile ones will be easily carried along by this).

Mentorship-fostering and enlightening students by showing people the path they could follow in achieving their dreams and bringing it to their level to make them see it as achievable.

Finally (and my favorite part) is creating a comfortable and accessible tech-friendlyenvironment.

Olaleye, Blessing Boyinde


[2] Lynne M. Kohm, “A Christian Perspective on Gender Equality” (2008) 15 Duke Journal of Gender Law & Policy 352-360


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