The Harlot’s Song (Waƙar Karuwa)

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Title The Harlot’s Song (Waƙar Karuwa)
Author or Owner Hamisu Yadudu Funtua (author), Umar Falke (owner)
Subject Ethics, Guidance, Prostitution, Patronage, Vigilance
Content This poem cautions the general public, especially male youth, about the dangers of prostitutes and prostitution. It begins by praising God, seeking His forgiveness for our shortcomings, then offering prayers of peace and blessings upon Prophet Muhammad. The poet, Hamisu Yadudu Funtua, first outlines the character of a prostitute and how she sets traps to induce her clients. By applying expensive makeup, she makes herself look good, flawless, and wears transparent dresses to entice and seduce new clients. Prostitutes are known by multiple names in various locations. They engage in excessive travel, and hang out in public places. Prostitutes are obsessed with money and can easily seduce their targets in order to milk them dry. The consequences of patronizing prostitutes are countless and include loss of wealth, honor and dignity. The poet concludes by advising all to be vigilant regarding the treacherous tricks of prostitutes. The poem ends with an expression of gratitude to Allah.
Genre Poetry
Language Hausa
Script Hausa Ajami
Manuscript condition 4 leaves. 18 x 23. 5 cm. // 8 pp., first and last blank.
Condition: Damp-stained, frayed and worn at edges. Vocalized and rubricated.
Type Handwritten
Publisher Unpublished
Provenance Kano, Nigeria
Source Reference Hamisu Yadudu Funtua, “Waƙar Karuwa” (nd). Courtesy of Northwestern University Libraries. Click here for the source link.
Access condition and copyright These materials are subject to copyright and are distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial 4.0 License, which permits non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. For use, distribution or reproduction beyond these terms, contact Professor Fallou Ngom (
Contributors Jennifer J Yanco, Mustapha Hashim Kurfi, Garba Zakari, Lori de Lucia, Babacar Dieng, Daivi Rodima-Taylor, Rebecca Shereikis, Alison Parker, Frank Antonelli, Mark Lewis, Shawn Provencal, Eric Schmidt.
Required citation information Fallou Ngom (PI), Jennifer Yanco, Mustapha Hashim Kurfi, Garba Zakari, Babacar Dieng, Daivi Rodima-Taylor, and Rebecca Shereikis. 2022. “The Harlot’s Song.”


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