Study Guide

The Joys of Motherhood Characters

By Buchi Emecheta

Nnu Ego

Nnu Ego has one great desire in life: to have children. From the time of her birth, we learn that...

Nnaife Owulum

Nnaife acts tough, but underneath, he struggles with feelings of inferiority. Though he takes...

Adaku

Adaku's name means "daughter of wealth" and it's an appropriate title for her. Confident and...

Nwokocha Agbadi

Agbadi is a minor chief and a wealthy man. He loves proud, arrogant women and falls in love with...

Ona

Ona is a proud, haughty woman who is not allowed to get married. Because her father had no sons,...

Oshiaju

Oshia is Nnu Ego's second-born son but the first to survive into adulthood. He is clever and does...

Okpo

After Nnaife returns from his stint in the military, he returns home to Ibuza to assert his right...

Adankwo

Adankwo is the senior Owulum's first wife, whom Nnaife inherits. Even though Nnaife has...

Adim

Adim is Nnaife and Nnu Ego's second living son (third child). His name means "now I am two" in...

Agunwa

Agunwa is Agbadi's senior wife. Agunwa's slave woman is forced to be buried with her, as is the...

Amatokwu

Amatokwu is Nnu Ego's first husband. When Nnu Ego fails to conceive a child, Amatokwu returns her...

Aremu

Aremu is Kehinde's (Nnaife and Nnu Ego's daughter) husband.

Ato

Ato is Nwakusor's wife.

Cordelia

Cordelia is Ubani's wife and is source of emotional comfort to Nnu Ego during hard times.

Dumbi

Dumbi is Adaku's daughter with Nnaife's elder brother. When the elder brother dies, Nnaife...

Iyawo Itsekiri

Iyawo Itsekiri is Nnu Ego's neighbor when she first moves into the small flat after the Meers'...

Kehinde

Kehinde is Nnu Ego's second-born twin daughter. (Her twin sister is Taiwo.)

Magnus

Magnus is Taiwo's (Nnaife and Nnu Ego's daughter) husband.

Malachi

Malachi is Nnu Ego's eighth born child (fourth girl).

Mama Abby

Mama Abby is Nnu Ego's neighbor when she first moves into the small flat after the Meers' compound.

Ngozi

Ngozi is Nnaife and Nnu Ego's first child, a son, who dies when only a few months old. Nnu Ego is...

Nnamdio

Nnamdio is Nnaife and Nnu Ego's third living son (sixth child to be born).

Nwakusor

Nwakusor is the Ibo man who saves Nnu Ego from committing suicide.

Obi Idayi

Obi Idayi (referred to as just Idayi sometimes) is Nwokocha Agbadi's (Nnu Ego's father's) best...

Obi Umunna

Obi Umunna is Ona's father. Because he has no sons to continue his family line, he has forbidden...

Obiageli

Obiageli is Nnaife and Nnu Ego's seventh born child (third girl).

Taiwo

Taiwo is Nnaife and Nnu Ego's daughter. (Her twin sister is Kehinde.)

Ubani

Ubani is the Meers' cook and Nnaife's friend.