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Year: 2007 Type: Report Language: English

Sholkamy discusses the paradox of provenance for ‘women’s empowerment’ and explains how this has clear implications for policies and programmes on the ground. The strategic approach to women’s empowerment has yielded great gains and has punctured some taboos by making women’s empowerment a public good that can deliver welfare and development. This operational definition of empowerment has limited utility in addressing questions of basic injustices and inequities. On the other hand the more politicized and to some extent westernized and purist meaning of empowerment as a right for women has created distances, misunderstanding and animosities and has in many parts of the world failed to convert the sceptics and create popular support.