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South Africa

BRICS Countries and the Construction of Conflict in the Women, Peace and Security Open Debates

Citation:

Hamilton, Caitlin, Pagot Rhaíssa, and Laura J Shepherd. 2021. “BRICS Countries and the Construction of Conflict in the Women, Peace and Security Open Debates.” International Affairs 97 (3): 739–57.

Authors: Caitlin Hamilton, Pagot Rhaíssa, Laura J Shepherd

Abstract:

The Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda is a diverse field of practice comprised of numerous actors, activities and artefacts. Conventional accounts of WPS development and implementation tend to reproduce a narrative that positions states located in the global North as ‘providers’ of WPS, and those in the South as ‘recipients’. This assumption in turn prescribes, and proscribes, forms of WPS engagement and has a constitutive effect on the agenda itself, as shown by post- and de-colonial analyses of the WPS agenda. This article seeks to explore the WPS practices of a group of states that in many ways challenge these North/South and provider/recipient binaries by explicitly positioning themselves as operating beyond and across them: the BRICS countries, comprised of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. In this article, we explore how constructions of conflict within the WPS practices of BRICS states relate to the acknowledgement of, and commitment to, the agenda more broadly. We ultimately argue that the BRICS' commitment to the WPS agenda is driven more by identity-making geopolitical considerations, including geostrategic interests, than a politics of peace.

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Peace and Security, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS Regions: Africa, East Africa, Southern Africa, Americas, South America, Asia, South Asia, Europe Countries: Brazil, China, India, Russian Federation, South Africa

Year: 2021

Perceptions of Gender, Mobility, and Personal Safety: South Africa Moving Forward

Citation:

Vanderschuren, Marianne J. W. A., Sekadi R. Phayane, and Alison J. Gwynne-Evans. 2019. “Perceptions of Gender, Mobility, and Personal Safety: South Africa Moving Forward.” Transportation Research Record 2673 (11): 616–27.

Authors: Marianne J.W. A. Vanderschuren, Sekadi R. Phayane, Alison J. Gwynne-Evans

Abstract:

Transport users make mode choices based on a variety of factors. These factors are economic or service driven, based on individual roles, habits, and interests, as well as age, life cycle stage, and gender. Analysis reflects different mobility patterns for males and females relating to care activities. Literature suggests that experiences of harassment have a significant effect on user choices. This study examines how South African data compares with international studies. Mode use and trip purposes, distances, and times differ depending on gender and are affected by the experience of harassment, which affects females more than males. Analyzing trip making in South Africa revealed that travel modes, distances, and times are not significantly different across gender. South African females make fewer trips than males, but significantly more care trips. Different modes of public transport score differently regarding potential experience of harassment, with trains performing the worst. The reason mode choice is not significantly different between females and males is assumed to be because of financial reasons. Investigating harassment perception in Cape Town reveals that females experience harassment more often and this influences their choices regarding care trips. These findings have significant implications for transport policy in South Africa and suggest that more nuanced policies are required.

Topics: Age, Gender, Infrastructure, Transportation Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: South Africa

Year: 2019

Social Exclusion and Rural Transport: Gender Aspects of a Road Improvement Project in Tshitwe, Northern Province

Citation:

Mahapa, Sabina M., and Mac Mashiri. 2001. “Social Exclusion and Rural Transport: Gender Aspects of a Road Improvement Project in Tshitwe, Northern Province.” Development Southern Africa 18 (3): 365–76.

Authors: Sabina M. Mahapa, Mac Mashiri

Annotation:

Summary:
This article presents a case for a reorientation of the way in which rural transport needs are perceived, planned and provided for, with a view to improved targeting of interventions, particularly with regard to addressing the mobility and accessibility needs of rural women. In addition, it seeks to critically appraise the sustainability of poverty alleviation properties attributed to the labour-based road works, especially in respect of their impact on women. It also explores the role that non-motorised modes of transport could play in reducing the transport burden of the Tshitwe community. 

Topics: Economies, Poverty, Gender, Women, Infrastructure, Transportation Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: South Africa

Year: 2001

A Feminist Perspective on Women and Mining in South Africa

Citation:

Valiani, Salimah, and Nestor Ndebele. 2018. “A Feminist Perspective on Women and Mining in South Africa.” In The Future of Mining in South Africa: Sunset or Sunrise?, edited by Salimah Valiani, 266-97. Woodmead, Johannesburg: Mapungubwe Institute for Strategic Reflection (MISTRA). 

Authors: Salimah Valiani, Nestor Ndebele

Annotation:

Summary:
“[T]his chapter focuses on South Africa – with its century-long history of mineral-based wealth generation and the recent, formal inclusion of women in the mining industry. It is argued that from a feminist perspective, mining thus far has not constituted a positive development experience for women. This is due to the myriad of occupational challenges faced by the still relatively small numbers of female mine workers, and the yet larger numbers of women negatively affected by the mining industry since its inception in the last quarter of the 19th century. Lahiri-Dutt and Macintyre (2006) have identified that women in mining areas in developing countries are typically not seen as active participants in the economy. Attempting to help reverse this misconception, it is further argued here that suboptimal use of female labour, destruction of community wealth and stunted social reproduction are the overall outcomes of mining for women in South Africa. The argument is demonstrated through discussion of the experiences of various groups of women examined by both academic researchers and advocate-researchers: female asbestos mine workers, female underground mine workers, female agricultural producers affected by mining and female artisanal mine workers” (Valiani & Ndebele, 2018, 267).

Topics: Economies, Extractive Industries, Gender, Women Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: South Africa

Year: 2018

Women, Land and Power: The Impact of the Communal Land Rights Act

Citation:

Claassens, Aninka, and Sizani Ngubane. 2008. “Women, Land and Power: The Impact of the Communal Land Rights Act.” In Land, Power and Custom: Controversies Generated by South Africa's Communal Land Rights Act, edited by  Aninka Classens and Ben Cousins, 154-183. Cape Town, South Africa: UCT Press.

Authors: Aninka Claassens, Sizani Ngubane

Annotation:

Summary:
"This chapter examines the likely impact of the Communal Land Rights Act 11 of 2004 on rural women in South Africa. It is based on research undertaken by the authors in the context of the legal challenge1 to the Act. The Act deals with the content and vesting of land rights as well as the powers and functions of the structures that will administer 'communal' land. The chapter looks at the interplay between land rights and power over land. The discussion begins with a description of some of the problems facing rural women in the former homeland areas covered by the Act. It then describes issues raised by women's organisations in late 2003 during the parliamentary process leading to the passing of the Communal Land Rights Bill. There were two main objections to the Bill. The first was that entrenching the power of traditional leaders over land was likely to reinforce patriarchal power relations and harden the terrain within which women struggle to access and retain land. The second was that the Bill would entrench past discrimination against women by upgrading and formalising 'old order' rights held exclusively by men" (Claasens & Ngubane 2008, 154).

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Society, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Patriarchy, Governance, Rights, Land Rights, Property Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: South Africa

Year: 2008

Producing Homonormativity in Neoliberal South Africa: Recognition, Redistribution, and the Equality Project

Citation:

Oswin, Natalie. 2007. “Producing Homonormativity in Neoliberal South Africa: Recognition, Redistribution, and the Equality Project.” Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society 32 (3): 649–69. 

Author: Natalie Oswin

Keywords: homosexuality, homonormativity, neoliberalism, South Africa, LGBTQ+

Annotation:

"When the NCGLE came into being, it opted to pursue a politics of strategic essentialism that ignored the ways in which class, race, and gender issues are inevitably intertwined with sexuality. Thus, it deepened community schisms along these lines and made its self- imposed task of building a strong, cohesive gay and lesbian movement in the postapartheid era that much more difficult. I suggest that its subsequent flawed attempts to bridge a politics of recognition with a meaningful politics of redistribution should not be read as a failure to address the needs of 'poor, black gays and lesbians'. Rather, it should be read as the only possible outcome. The NCGLE/EP did not manage to shake off the yoke of the binary that divides South Africa’s gay and lesbian community into haves and have-nots because it played a role in producing this binary. By serving as a euphemism for community in South African gay and lesbian political discourse, this figure offered a way for the NCGLE/EP to make itself relevant to its intended audience while molding that audience into a cohesive group. The 'poor, black gay and lesbian' is a caricature that played a starring role in the NCGLE/EP’s performance of recognition and redistribution. This figure is the product of the overlay of divisions within the gay and lesbian community onto the strategy of the organization that exacerbated them” (Oswin 2007, 666).

Topics: Intersectionality, LGBTQ, Political Participation Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: South Africa

Year: 2007

Gendered (In)Security in South Africa: What Can Ubuntu Feminism Offer?

Citation:

du Plessis, Gretchen Erika. 2019. “Gendered Human (In)Security in South Africa: What Can Ubuntu Feminism Offer?” Acta Academica 51 (2): 41–63.

Author: Gretchen Erika du Plessis

Abstract:

Gendered human security as a focus for protracted violence against women in a society in transition calls for urgent attention, especially in South Africa. The author summarises some tenets of ubuntu feminism and juxtaposes them with state-centric and people-centric discourses of human security and their link to development, gendered well-being and interpersonal violence. Inadequate attention paid to human interdependency as seen through an ubuntu feminist lens is linked to poor responses in addressing interpersonal and gender violence. The argument is made that an individualised, human-rights based approach is inadequate as a frame to find sustainable solutions to intractable gendered human insecurity. Looking at human insecurity and violence against women in South Africa, this article offers three arguments in favour of ubuntu feminism for renewed efforts to analyse the issue and locate adequate responses.

Keywords: South Africa, African feminism, violence

Topics: Development, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Rights, Human Rights, Security, Human Security, Violence Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: South Africa

Year: 2019

Vulnerabilities and Inequalities Experienced by Women in the Climate Change Discourse in South Africa’s Rural Communities: Implications for Social Work

Citation:

Nyahunda, Louis, Jabulani Calvin Makhubele, Vincent Mabvurira, and Frans Koketso Matlakala. 2020. “Vulnerabilities and Inequalities Experienced by Women in the Climate Change Discourse in South Africa’s Rural Communities: Implications for Social Work.” The British Journal of Social Work. doi:10.1093/bjsw/bcaa118.

Authors: Louis Nyahunda, Jabulani Calvin Makhubele, Vincent Mabvurira, Frans Koketso Matlakala

Abstract:

Women’s vulnerability to climate-induced shocks hinges on a high dependence on climate-sensitive livelihoods and a natural resource base aggravated by the acute inequalities that they experience due to patriarchal dominance. This article’s purpose is to unpack the vulnerabilities and inequalities that rural women experience in the climate change terrain which necessitates the involvement of the social work profession. This study adopted a qualitative methodology guided by a multi-case study design. A sample of twenty-five participants, including community members and social workers, participated in the study. These participants were selected through simple purposive and convenient sampling techniques. Data were collected using focus group discussions and individual interviews. The thematic content analysis was followed to analyse the findings. The study established that rural women are impacted by various vulnerabilities and inequalities in the climate change discourse, which serve as barriers to their effective adaptation. The vulnerabilities and inequalities manifest through lack of land and property rights, discrimination from decision-making processes, poverty and lack of adequate knowledge about climate change mitigation and adaptation. Social work involvement to address these catastrophes is scant in the Vhembe district in Limpopo province, South Africa. The study recommends that all climate change interventions should put an end to inequalities women experience in order for them to be effective and social workers should be at the frontline of such initiative.

Keywords: climate change, Inequalities, rural women, social work, Vhembe district, vulnerabilities

Topics: Environment, Climate Change, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Livelihoods, Rights, Land Rights, Property Rights Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: South Africa

Year: 2020

Rural Electrification, Gender and the Labor Market: A Cross-Country Study of India and South Africa

Citation:

Rathi, Sambhu Singh, and Claire Vermaak. 2018. “Rural Electrification, Gender and the Labor Market: A Cross-Country Study of India and South Africa.” World Development 109: 346-59.

Authors: Sambhu Singh Rathi, Claire Vermaak

Abstract:

This cross-country study estimates the effect of household electrification on labor market outcomes for rural individuals in India and South Africa, two developing countries that have implemented large-scale rural electrification schemes in recent decades. Two identification strategies are used: propensity score matching and panel fixed effects estimation. We focus on three indicators of labor market success: employment, earnings and hours worked. We find that electrification raises the annual incomes earned by those who work in paid employment, for both men and women in both countries. For India, both genders work fewer hours, suggesting that electricity raises productivity. For South Africa, where the labor market has less absorptive capacity, there is no employment benefit of electrification. But women who work benefit the most from the productivity gains of electrification: they have greater increases in earnings than men. Our findings suggest that the benefits of electrification do not accrue universally, but rather depend on gender roles, supporting policies and the labor absorptive capacity of the economy.

Keywords: rural electrification, labor market, gender, India, South Africa

Topics: Economies, Gender, Gender Roles, Infrastructure, Energy Regions: Africa, Southern Africa, Asia, South Asia Countries: India, South Africa

Year: 2018

Gains for Women from Farmland Redistribution in South Africa and Sustainable Pathways out of Poverty – Insights from Recent Evidence

Citation:

Motala, Shirin, Stewart Ngandu, and Aubrey Mpungose. 2016. “Gains for Women from Farmland Redistribution in South Africa and Sustainable Pathways out of Poverty – Insights from Recent Evidence.” Agenda 30 (4): 85-98.  

Authors: Shirin Motala, Stewart Ngandu, Aubrey Mpungose

Abstract:

Equitable access to land and other natural resources aimed at significant rural poverty reduction are at the forefront of ambitious goals entrenched in post-1994 land and agrarian policies. Among other targets, redistributive land policies promise that women should make up at least one-third of all land reform beneficiaries. After two decades of farmland redistribution, disputes persist as to whether these outcomes have been achieved.

This focus piece systematically reviews evidence from a micro-level study based on blended information gathering strategies in three provinces that vary in terms of their agrarian structures and agro-ecology. The study uniquely overlays farmland transfer data with provisioning of agricultural development support information.

The analysis embeds the gender equity-land reform puzzle in the traditional poverty-land reform nexus. Its main question explores the extent to which land and agrarian reform interventions have produced an altered livelihood dynamic for land reform beneficiaries and more importantly to measure how this has translated into gendered sustainable livelihood impacts at household level. The study draws on the sustainable livelihoods framework as the lens for making sense of gender inequalities in the countryside and the extent to which there has been equitable redress in the interests of rural women.

The findings summarise trends in respect of access, ownership and control of land assets and the related livelihood outcomes by gender. Evidence suggests that shrinking numbers of black farmers gain ownership of land and enjoy access to Government-financed support for on-farm production and participation in agricultural value chains beyond the farm gate. This finding is more pronounced for women farmers. More importantly, it points to important design features of such interventions which can and do impact on promoting sustainable livelihoods, particularly for female headed households.

Keywords: land and agrarian reform, gender, gender inequality, sustainable livelihoods, pro-poor development, farmland transfer, land ownership

Topics: Agriculture, Development, Economies, Poverty, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Gender Equity, Households, Land Tenure, Livelihoods, Rights, Land Rights, Property Rights Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: South Africa

Year: 2016

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