The Tiv Song Theatre and Genderisation of the Tiv Woman

A Semiotic-Content Analysis


  • Marcellinus A. Asen Department of Theatre Arts, Benue State University, Makurdi
  • Simeon T. Tsav Department of Theatre and Film Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka


The Tiv Song Theatre is the major expressive medium of the Tiv people of central Nigeria. However, this medium has become a tool for negative portrayal of female sexuality in Tiv land. Consequently, this paper presents some selected Tiv songs and through a semiotic-content analysis gives an insight into the genderisation of the womenfolk as a downward trend in Tiv culture. In carrying out the research, content analysis of Tiv songs, oral interview and participatory observation have been adopted as the methods of collecting data. The paper submits that, women are usually subjugated, ridiculed, insulted, maligned, denigrated, and condemned both in practice and discourse on sexuality by men, who are however usually exonerated. It therefore condemns this development and sues for a change of attitude in order to attain a moral and balanced representation of sex related matters.