Gender Norms, Poverty and Armed Conflict in Cote D’Ivoire: Engaging Men in Women’s Social and Economic Empowerment Programming

Citation:

Falb, K. L., J. Annan, E. King, J. Hopkins, D. Kpebo, and J. Gupta. 2014. “Gender Norms, Poverty and Armed Conflict in Cote D’Ivoire: Engaging Men in Women’s Social and Economic Empowerment Programming.” Health Education Research 29 (6): 1015–27. doi:10.1093/her/cyu058.

Authors: J. Annan, E. King, J. Hopkins, D. Kpebo, J. Gupta, K. L. Falb

Abstract:

Engaging men is a critical component in efforts to reduce intimate partner violence (IPV). Little is known regarding men’s perspectives of approaches that challenge inequitable gender norms, particularly in settings impacted by armed conflict. This article describes men’s experiences with a women’s empowerment program and highlights men’s perceptions of gender norms, poverty and armed conflict, as they relate to achieving programmatic goals. Data are from 32 Ivorian men who participated in indepth interviews in 2012. Interviews were undertaken as part of an intervention that combined gender dialogue groups for both women and their male partners with women’s only village savings and loans programs to reduce IPV against women. Findings suggested that in the context of armed conflict, traditional gender norms and economic stressors experienced by men challenged fulfillment of gender roles and threatened men’s sense of masculinity. Men who participated in gender dialogue groups discussed their acceptance of programming and identified improvements in their relationships with their female partners. These men further discussed increased financial planning along with their partners, and attributed such increases to the intervention. Addressing men’s perceptions of masculinity, poverty and armed conflict may be key components to reduce men’s violence against women in conflict-affected settings.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Economies, Poverty, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gender Roles, Gender Budgeting, Households, Sexual Violence, Male Perpetrators, SV against women, Violence Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Côte D'Ivoire

Year: 2014

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