Sweeter with Age: The Enigmatic Miss Jane McCotter in the Colonial Services of the Egba Native Administration in Abeokuta, Nigeria, 1929-1955
Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
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AbstractIn spite of the significant roles European women played in the administration of colonial Nigeria, only a handful of them have been given adequate attention. Against this backdrop, the contributions of Miss Jane McCotter to the development of the Egba Healthcare delivery system, were examined. Relying and critically evaluating extant literature, newspapers, interviews and archival records, the authors demonstrate that she made her marks, not only on the quality work she put into the field of nursing and midwifery, but also, on how she commanded attention as the proprietress of a midwifery school and a proficient Structural Engineer, who supervised the construction of public and maternal health buildings in the colonial Egba Division. Furthermore, the study has established that despite her advanced age, she put her all to the services of the Egba people, education of the girl child, women’s welfare, as well as the general development of Egba land in particular, and Nigeria, as a whole. This study, therefore, fulfills knowledge production in biographical studies, gender, colonial empires, and also, demonstrates the resilience, perseverance and dedication of this human enigma, despite the challenges she faced.