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Le levirat, une alternative coutumiere pour la protection des enfants orphelins et de la veuve en Côte D’ivoire

Author: 
Dr. AGBADOU Nakpon Joceline-Boli
Subject Area: 
Social Sciences and Humanities
Abstract: 

Levirate is a customary practice in Côte d'Ivoire, whereby a brother unites with his brother's widow or an elder son with his father's in order to create a framework for protection and assistance to the widow and especially to orphaned children. However, this practice tends to disappear, especially in the Gôh region, where it faces various deviations in a difficult socio-economic context. In this environment where the transition from community to society has had a significant impact on the organization and functioning of societies in contact with a market economy, advanced urbanization, schooling and acculturation, can this protection to be effective? Paradoxically, the levirate seems to be the only traditional institution in Côte d'Ivoire and in this region for the perpetuation of ties with the deceased and especially the maintenance of his legacy. Three (03) villages formed the sites of this study. This one aims to analyze the conditions of assistance and protection of the orphan child and the widow. To do this, at the methodological level, during two (02) months, semi-structured interviews made it possible to collect data from rural and urban populations. The analysis of the data was essentially qualitative. The results relate to five (05) life stories, presented following two main axes: the validity of the practice of levirate and the difficulties of the applicability of the said custom. This work, finally, insists on the sustenance of this ancestral custom, which in fact preserves the family cohesion, the maintenance of the lineage, the protection of the widow and especially that of the orphan child and probably for the prevention of delinquency. juvenile.

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