Displaying items 16 - 30 of 125 in total
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    Empowerment As Change

    In this article, Connell argues that true empowerment of women requires radical institutional change – a democratizing of institutions. She reflects on MGD3’s claim that development requires gender equality, arguing that much development is done with the subordination of women. She discusses the rhetoric of empowerment as being politically effective but also problematic in its simplification of the category of women, and says that in order for progress in women’s empowerment and for gender justice, men need to be involved. She argues that any worthwhile concept of development must involve communities, institutions and populations as well as institutions, and must have a sense of limits and justice. …

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    Empowerment Beyond Resistance: Cultural Ways of Negotiating Power Relations

    This paper explores Muslim women's experiences of empowerment in northern Pakistan by drawing upon the life history of a woman informant named Dana. It also outlines some of the methodological concerns related with researching empowerment in a situation where the researchers and the researched share common context. The paper re-conceptualises the utility of empowerment by unveiling it as an intricate process, which involves the negotiation of roles, responsibilities and values by individuals. The findings evidence that empowerment is not always exhibiting absolute power over others or open defiance against standard norms; neither is it resistance against coercion at all times. …

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    Empowerment For Grassroots Women

    Mwaura-Muiru highlights the need for the women’s movement and donors to work towards and support woman-led (especially poor woman-led) transformation. Collective organizing and social networks is a means of empowerment that allows women to respond to challenges, but grassroots organizing is being threatened by social and macro economic models of development. The women’s movement’s renewed interest in grassroots women’s coping strategies could potentially be a huge step forward for the women’s movement, but, Mwaura-Muiru argues, the views of the less privileged should be seen as the critical voice in the design of appropriate interventions. She critiques Gender and Development as being too focussed on technical and professional training, which continues to marginalize poor women, and argues that there is a need to rethink development and women’s empowerment, and stresses that strategies towards women’s empowerment need to consider grassroots women’s needs and diversity. …

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    Empowerment From Below

    Alan Greig uses his experience as a development practitioner to reflect on the lessons that have been learned with regards to women’s empowerment, what questions remain unaddressed, and what the frictions, hopes and challenges are for women’s empowerment. He discusses the things that need to be considered more attentively in the broader attempts to ‘empower’ economically and politically, and offers his opinion on the determining factors for women’s empowerment. …

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    Empowerment, Women's Bodies And Freedom: In Conversation With Khawar Mumtaz And Jacqueline Pitanguy

    Wendy Harcourt, editor of Development, talks with Khawar Mumtaz and Jacqueline Pitanguy about how they understand empowerment in relation to their national and international work for women’s human rights. …

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    Feminisms, Empowerment and Development

    The economic and political empowerment of women continues to be a central focus for development agencies worldwide; access to medical care, education and employment, as well as women's reproductive rights, remain key factors affecting women's autonomy. …

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    Gender Equality And Economic Growth: Is There A Win-Win?, IDS Working Paper 417

    To what extent does gender equality contribute to economic growth? And to what extent does the reverse relationship hold true? There are a growing number of studies exploring these relationships, generally using cross-country regression analysis. They are characterized by varying degrees of methodological rigour to take account of the problems associated with econometric analysis at this highly aggregated level, including the problems of reverse causality. Bearing these problems in mind, a review of this literature suggests that the relationship between gender equality and economic growth is an asymmetrical one. The evidence that gender equality, particularly in education and employment, contributes to economic growth is far more consistent and robust than the relationship that economic growth contributes to gender equality in terms of health, wellbeing and rights. …

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    Guide To Heteronormativity

    Activists, academics and practitioners Kate Bedford, Stevi Jackson, Kamala Kempadoo, Jo Doezema, Jennifer Radloff and Jeanne Prinsloo, Chris Dolan, Amy Lind, and Alan Greig define ‘heteronormativity’ in a series of short interviews. …

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    Interrogating the Rights Discourse on Girls' Education: Neocolonialism, Neoliberalism, and the Post-Beijing Platform for Action

    This article examines how girls’ education since 1995 has emerged as a prominent symbol within the ‘rights’ discourse coming out of the Beijing Platform for Action. By highlighting the neo-liberal and neo-colonial processes during this time, particular shifts are traced which show how girls’ education has been a symbolic part of the geo-political canvas in Pakistan and Afghanistan alongside the ‘war on terror’ and universalisation of education. The article refers to alternative voices which have attempted to disrupt the global narrative of the post-Beijing ‘rights’ agenda and points to the problems of this in the context of occupations, militarisation, and markets being used simultaneously as strategies for global governance and order. …

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    Introduction

    The South Asia Hub of the Pathways of Women’s Empowerment research consortium held an inception workshop based on scoping papers on the themes of ‘voice’, ‘work’, and ‘body’. The purpose of the research is to seek to identify discourses and interventions that have led to the greater empowerment of women, based on these three themes. The papers in this book are culled from that inception workshop and give an idea of the mosaic that forms the lives of women in the heartland of South Asia. Three main arenas of activism and interventions emerge from the papers. …

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    Introduction: Negotiating Empowerment

    This introductory article draws out some of the dimensions and dilemmas around women's empowerment that are highlighted in the articles in this IDS Bulletin: the choices, the negotiations, the narratives and above all, the context of women's lived experience. In doing so, we show that empowerment is a complex process that requires more than the quick and easy solutions often offered by development agencies. Much of the significant change happening in women's lives takes place outside of the range of these conventional interventions. In conclusion, we suggest that for development agencies to really support women's empowerment requires greater engagement with changing structures rather than accommodating women within the inequitable existing order, and a much deeper understanding of what makes change happen in their lives. …

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    Introduction: Negotiating Empowerment

    This introduction draws out some of the dimensions and dilemmas around women's empowerment that are highlighted in the chapters in the book: the choices, the negotiations, the narratives and above all, the context of women's lived experience. In doing so, we show that empowerment is a complex process that requires more than the quick and easy solutions often offered by development agencies. …

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    Introduction: Quotas - Add Women And Stir?

    Quotas have become increasingly popular as a fast track option for securing enhanced political representation largely because of their proven impact on increasing the number of women in parliament. As more countries have adopted one form or another of the quota, it is now timely to reflect on what the implications have been for transforming gender relations and the nature of politics at large. This introduction examines from the country case studies presented in this IDS Bulletin, the insight offered into the dynamics of motorways and pathways of increasing women's decision-making power (with or without a quota) and the underlying assumptions about gender, power and politics as well as the policy issues for consideration. …

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    Introduction: Reclaiming Feminism, Gender And Neoliberalism

    Neoliberalism – that ‘grab-bag of ideas based on the fundamentalist notion that markets are self-correcting, allocate resources efficiently and serve the public interest well’, as Stiglitz (2008) puts it – has been a focal point for contestation in development. Feminists have highlighted its deleterious effects on women’s lives and on gender relations. They have drawn attention to the extent to which the institutions promoting neoliberal economic and social policies have undermined a more progressive agenda, as they have come to appropriate words such as ‘empowerment’ and ‘agency’ and eviscerate them of any association with a project of progressive social change. This collection of articles brings together reflections from a diversity of locations on prospects for reclaiming these ideas and using them to reframe and revitalise feminist concepts like ‘agency’ and ‘empowerment’, we argue, we need to return to and reaffirm their ‘liberating’ dimensions, reaffirming their association with forms of collective action that involve resisting and transgressing repressive social norms. …

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    Introduction: Sexuality Matters, IDS Bulletin, 37.5

    This IDS Bulletin addresses a theme that mainstream development has persistently neglected: sexuality. Why is sexuality a development concern? Because sexuality matters to people, and is an important part of most people’s lives. Because development policies and practices are already having a significant – and often negative – impact on sexuality, and because sexuality and the societal norms that seek to contain and control it have, in turn, a significant impact on poverty and well-being. Development needs to move beyond the current limited and negative approaches, to embrace the significance of sexuality for development in more affirmative ways. …