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Agency and empowerment in consumption in relation to a patriarchal bargain: The case of Nigerian immigrant women in the UK

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Andrew Lindridge



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Emerald, 2016.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


Previous research into consumption behaviours of immigrants is limited in their scope and focus on male immigrants, with female immigrants either invisible or stereotyped. Compounding this problem are disciplinary, geographic, linguistic and other barriers that hinder social scientists’ research into female migration that often explains why research’s knowledge of immigrant women is limited. This paper aims to correct these omissions by exploring how female immigrants use consumption to challenge whilst supporting their husband’s position as head of the family, a position negotiated and supported by their wives through their patriarchal bargain. The sample group (n _ 20) consisted of ten first-generation Nigerian immigrant married couples living in Britain, who were interviewed together, with the married female then re-interviewed separately. This paper demonstrates how women transition from being a wife in a consanguine family in Nigeria, which they describe as patriarchal, to becoming one within a nuclear family in the UK, a society to which they attribute gender equality. Nigerian immigrant women alter their ways of thinking and consuming, with implications to their agency and empowerment. In particular, consumption choices demonstrated the limits of these women’s willingness to challenge their patriarchal bargain and instead often colluded with their husbands to maintain his position as the head of the family.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Lindridge AM, Penaloza L, Worlu O

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: The European Journal of Marketing

Year: 2016

Volume: 50

Issue: 9/10

Pages: 1652 - 1671

Online publication date: 09/12/2016

Acceptance date: 17/05/2016

Date deposited: 05/10/2017

ISSN (print): 0309-0566

Publisher: Emerald


DOI: 10.1108/EJM-07-2011-0365


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