Gender Echoes from the Nigerian Civil War: 50 Years After

Ubong Umoh's picture
Call for Papers
March 5, 2017
Subject Fields: 
African History / Studies
University of Uyo, Nigeria
Centre for Gender Studies
2017 International Conference
Gender Echoes from the Nigerian Civil War: Fifty Years After
Date:    March 5-9, 2017
Venue: ELF Auditorium, University of Uyo, Main Campus, Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria


Call for Papers


Gender relations occupy a central place in discourses of war. However, fifty years after the Nigerian Civil War, elitist narratives of violence, diplomatic intrigue, political masterstroke and post-war reconstruction continue to dominate its lean historiography. While war-time gender relation was striking, it has not thrived as a significant theme in scholarship on the Nigerian Civil War. Acknowledging this, the Centre for Gender Studies, University of Uyo, Nigeria, is compelled by a heightened concerned over the lack of devoted and detailed studies on gender relations during the Nigerian Civil War. The Centre seeks to cushion this concern by way of an International Conference on the theme: Gender Echoes from the Nigerian Civil War: Fifty Years After.


During the 30 month Nigerian Civil War, (July 1967- January 1970), gender roles went through several transformations, characterized by contingency and fluidity. The war was not the exclusive domain of men. Gender roles were both complementary and supplementary. Classic gender roles during the war were arguably challenged by social, economic, and political exigencies. In different ways, men and women developed diverse social apparatuses to help deal with moves, displacement, hardship, babysitting, and other tasks necessary to survive in the fluidity of wartime exigencies. Also, in many but undocumented ways, women featured as visible actors during the war and aided the psychological stability and resolve of male fighting forces in the battlefield. However, fifty years after the war, “genderfied” discussions on the Nigerian Civil War have echoed the least. The conference sets out to address the gap in the dimensions and perspectives of war-time gender relations.


New approaches to the study of war-time gender relations and varying aspects of gender perception would be entertained. We encourage proposals that not only challenge the orthodox view of war-time gender relations, but that raise neo-revisionist interpretations. We also welcome papers bordering on the right and plight of men and women during the war. The conference will also feature focus group discussion that would bring together civil war participants to narrate their experiences and/or re-tell the experiences of others. 


The goal of this conference is to provide a hybrid interdisciplinary platform for scholars from various fields, personnel of tri-military services (serving and retired) and civilians to interrogate the various sub-themes listed below. It is expected that this conference will act as a forum where scholars can attempt to better articulate the limits, scope and the shifting meanings of gender during the Nigerian Civil War. The conference will feature break out panels, plenary sessions and keynotes and lead papers. The decision is rich in significance for the attempt to explore war-time implications of gender relations.

Submission and Timeline

Scholars in any field of study are invited to submit proposals of no more than 250 words. Individual proposals should include submitter’s name, contact information, institutional affiliation(s), a one page abstract of the paper (with a title) and a brief biographical statement (no more than 10 lines) indicating your academic and/or professional status along with a functional email address. Please note that submissions will be accepted as time and space permit. Deadline for submission of proposals is December 28, 2016. Email proposals as an MS Word attachment to and Intending participants will be advised on the status (acceptance or rejection) of their proposals by January 10, 2017. It is expected that accepted proposals should be developed into full papers and emailed to the conference organisers by February 20, 2017 for pre-circulation among discussant and presenters. A publication is planned in the form of an edited book and/or a special issue in the Centre’s Journal of Gender Studies.

Sub Themes

  • Gender Roles and War-time Sexual Division of Labour
  • Gender and War Time Class Consciousness
  • Gender and Media Representation of the War
  • Gender and Selected Services during the War
  • Gender and Human Rights Violation during the Civil War
  • Gender and Diaspora Involvement during the War
  • Gender and Survival Risks in Secessionist Biafra
  • Gender and War-Induced Diseases
  • Sufferings and Courage of Men and Women during the War
  • Gender and Civil Organizations during the War
  • Men, Women and War Mobilisation
  • Men, Women and Spiritual Solutions to War-time Social Problems
  • Men, Women and War-time Entertainment
  • Support and Challenges of Military Personnel’s Wives
  • Motherhood and Fatherhood during the War Years
  • Care-Giving, Love-Giving and Love-Making Roles of Women during the War
  • War-Time Sexual Violence, Harassment and Abuse
  • War time Queer Relations
  • Men, Women and War-Time Intelligence Gathering
  • Women at Home and Men at the Frontlines
  • The Plight of Men and Women as IDPs and Refugees
  • Men, Women and Food Production during the War
  • The Songs of Women through the Gongs of Men
  • Gendered Literature on the Nigerian Civil War
  • Post-Civil War Gender Relations in Nigeria


Conference Registration Fee
International Participants: $100.00
Local Participants             N20,000.00
International Students        $25.00
Local Students                     N10,000.00
Resource Persons
Keynote Speaker
Professor Egodi Uchendu
Professor of History
University of Nigeria, Nsukka
Guest Lecturer
Dr.  Chukwuma CC Osakwe
Associate Professor of Military History
Department of History and International Studies
Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna
Lead Paper Presenter I
Major General Godwin George Umo (Rtd.) OON
Lead Paper Presenter II
Major General DD Enietie
Nigerian Army Headquarters, Abuja
Panel Chairman I
Major General Edet Akpan (Rtd.)
Panel Chairman II
Commodore SS Garba
Commander NNS Jubilee, Ikot Abasi, Akwa Ibom State
Discussant I
Colonel Sunday Jimmy Ayorinde llori
Chief of Staff, 13 Brigade, Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria
Discussant II
Lt. Colonel FO Alli
Commander 6BN, Nigerian Army, Ibagwa, Abak, Akwa Ibom State
Professor Enoabasi Urua
Professor of Linguistics
Director, Centre for Gender Studies, University of Uyo, Nigeria
Chief Host
Professor Enefiok Essien
Vice Chancellor, University of Uyo, Nigeria
Dr. Ubong Essien Umoh
Department of History and International Studies
University of Uyo, Nigeria
Contact Info: 

Enoabasi Urua, Director Centre for Gender Studies, University of Uyo, Nigeria (

Ubong Essien Umoh, Senior Lecturer, Department of History, University of Uyo, Nigeria (

Contact Email: