However, they also have given women an arena for cooperating to oppose male dominance.
In Uganda, a man sometimes grants "male status" to his senior wife, allowing her to behave as an equal toward men and as a superior toward his other wives.
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While it has traditionally been the role of men to control familial financial matters however, women provide substantial economic contributions to their families and to the larger Ugandan economy.
When cash-crop agriculture became lucrative, as in southeastern Uganda in the 1920s, men often claimed rights to land owned by their female relatives, and their claims were supported by local councils and protectorate courts.
Polygynous marriage practices, which permit a man to marry more than one woman, have reinforced some aspects of male dominance.
Many women report they continue to struggle to find employment opportunities.
Some women leave their communities to find greater employment opportunities.