Gender Sensitivity and the Inheritance Act of The Bahamas, 1833


  • Sabrina A. Russell-Skinner Government High School



The motivation for this paper stemmed from the realization that discrimination against women in the Bahamas still exists, is being continually perpetuated and, in fact, is institutionalized by the law which should enforce justice for all. Against the backdrop of preparation for the 1995 United Nations Conference on Women, a closer look is taken at gender discrimination in the Bahamas by examining the Constitution and the Inheritance Act of 1833. The assumption that institutionalized patriarchy gives rise to gender discrimination guides the analysis. The organs of male domination and the reasons for its perpetuation are discussed as well as obstacles to the passage of the draft Inheritance Bill (1983). It is recommended the inequities arising from an inbuilt structure of a male dominated society be addressed by legislation that will ensure equity and social justice for all. Finally, it is suggested that the draft Inheritance Bill (1983) with modifications to some provisions has the potential to accomplish this.

Author Biography

Sabrina A. Russell-Skinner, Government High School

History Department Government High School Nassau, New Providence Bahamas


Ani, M. (1994). Yurugu: An African-centered critique of European cultural thought and behavior. Africa World Press.

Bahamas Independence Order, no. 1080: The Constitution. (1973). Nassau, Bahamas: Government of The Bahamas. Retrieved from http://laws.bahamas. RDINATE/1973/1973-1080/TheBahamasIndependenceOrder1973_1.pdf

Bahamas Ministry of Justice, Women’s Affairs Unit. (1994). A national report on the status of women in the Bahamas, 1994.

Daly, S. (1992). Daly, S. (1992). Child and family law in Trinidad and Tobago. Government Printery.

Engels, F. (1970). The origin of the family, private property, and the state. New York University Press.

Free National Movement. (1992). Manifesto '92.

Fremon, S. (Ed.). (1977). Women and men: Traditions and trends. HW Wilson.

Inheritance (Ch. 116) Bahamas (2002).

Inheritance Act (1833) Bahamas.

Miller, E. (1991). Men at risk. Jamaica Publishing House.

Smith, A. (1991). Emerging from innocence: Religion, theology and development. Eureka Press.

UN Women. (1979). Convention on the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women (CEDAW).






Original Articles