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The Political Economy of Violence against Women during Armed Conflict in Uganda


Turshen, Meredeth. 2000. “The Political Economy of Violence against Women during Armed Conflict in Uganda.” Social Research 67 (3): 803–24.

Author: Meredeth Turshen


The article focuses on the economic and political violence against women during civil war in Uganda. Testimonies of women who were raped and tortured by soldiers during war in Uganda is given in the article. Rape is known to be the most common act of violence against women during wartime, and it is also an act of political violence as women who are raped are abolished from their communities. The diseased women lose their eligibility to get married and lose their access to agricultural livelihood. According to a report presented in the article women are considered as property by the Ugandan soldiers. The author says that these gender disputes can be avoided by providing free education and adult literacy classes that would help to rehabilitate women. (EBSCO)

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Women, Political Economies, Sexual Violence, Rape, SV against women, Violence Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Uganda

Year: 2000

Economic Empowerment for Pastoralist Women: A Comparative Look at Program Experience in Uganda, Somaliland and Sudan


Livingstone, John, and Everse Ruhindi. 2011. Economic Empowerment for Pastoralist Women: A Comparative Look at Program Experience in Uganda, Somaliland and Sudan. Brighton, UK: Land Deals Politics Initiative.

Authors: John Livingstone, Everse Ruhindi


This paper seeks to draw lessons from program experience in the three countries. It points to the effectiveness of business skills training for women’s groups in pastoral areas, when combined with grants for rotating funds that enable women to acquire productive assets and expand their micro-enterprises. While, microcredit may be difficult to implement with partly mobile communities in which women do own land or assets that can be used as collateral, it is increasingly viable in the growing towns and trading centres in and around which pastoralists are living more settled lives. The value of support for women’s micro-enterprises is recognized, with significant social impacts through increased household spending on children’s health and education, as well as strengthened women’s groups that can support a wide variety of activities outside the home. But, the paper also points to the need for efforts at the “meso” level to promote small and medium sized enterprises that can employ significant numbers of women, as well as to work at the macro (policy) level to promote a more business-friendly environment, with supportive transport and communications infrastructure and regulatory frameworks.

Topics: Development, Economies, Gender, Women, Households, Infrastructure, Information & Communication Technologies, Transportation, Livelihoods, NGOs, Rights, Land Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Somalia, Sudan, Uganda

Year: 2011

Homosexuality, Sex Work, and HIV/AIDS in Displacement and Post-Conflict Settings: The Case of Refugees in Uganda


Nyanzi, Stella. 2013. “Homosexuality, Sex Work, and HIV/AIDS in Displacement and Post-Conflict Settings: The Case of Refugees in Uganda.” International Peacekeeping 20 (4): 450-68.

Author: Stella Nyanzi


This article aims to disrupt the silence, invisibility and erasures of non-heteronormative sexual orientations or gender identities, and of sex work, in HIV/AIDS responses within displacement and post-conflict settings in Africa. Informed by Gayle Rubin's sexual hierarchy theoretical framework, it explores the role of discrimination and violation of the rights of sex workers and of gender and sexual minorities in driving the HIV/AIDS epidemic during displacement. Specific case materials focus on ethnographic research conducted in urban and rural Uganda. Recommendations for policy, practice and programmes are outlined.

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Gender, Health, HIV/AIDS, LGBTQ, Livelihoods, Sexual livelihoods, Post-Conflict, Rights, Sexuality Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Uganda

Year: 2013

The Gendered Politics of Firewood in Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement in Uganda


Mulumba, Deborah. 2011. “The Gendered Politics of Firewood in Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement in Uganda.” African Geographical Review 30 (1): 33–46.

Author: Deborah Mulumba


This paper examines the environmental destruction that arises from sudden location of refugees in rural settlements in Uganda. It highlights the gendered biases created when women are forced to traverse long distances to gather firewood. In doing so, the paper seeks to improve the provision of humanitarian support to refugee populations and the physical environment in their settlements. The research design was exploratory, descriptive, and largely qualitative even though small amounts of primary quantitative data were collected from a sample of 100 women and 30 men. Results of the data analysis show that refugee settlements have a negative effect on the environment in and around refugee settlements due to the excessive cutting of trees needed for firewood and charcoal. Moreover, the data show that women refugees, whose gender role it is to collect firewood, had to travel long distances in search of fuel wood, a process that exposed them to exploitation and domestic violence. The paper concludes with some recommendations including the provision of fuel energy and the adoption of environmental strategies that can conserve the ecosystem in and around refugee settlements.

Keywords: women, refugees, gender, environment, firewood, refugee settlement, Uganda

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Refugee/IDP Camps, Domestic Violence, Environment, Gender, Gender Roles, Gender-Based Violence, Humanitarian Assistance, Infrastructure, Energy Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Uganda

Year: 2011

Analysis of Empowerment of Refugee Women in Camps and Settlements


Krause, Ulrike. 2014. “Analysis of Empowerment of Refugee Women in Camps and Settlements." Journal of Internal Displacement 4 (1): 29–52.

Author: Ulrike Krause


This article analyzes the empowering impact that refugeeism can have on women, a largely neglected area of research. In the past, the academic discourse of refugees’ identity reveals a clear trend towards homogenization, objectification, and victimization. Refugee women are still seen as disempowered passive victims. Considering that most refugees are caused in patriarchal societies in the global south, this article presents the idea that forced displacement can break patriarchal patterns because refugees renegotiate and redefine gender relations while in camps and settlements which could lead to women’s empowerment. This argument is made after an extensive review of literature on refugee identity, differing camp and settlement structures, and the discourse about actions that can disempower or empower refugee women. In order to move beyond assumptions, this paper relies on concrete empirical research of national policy analyses and a field research case study of Rhino Camp settlement in Uganda. A review of this research will show how displacement can both challenge and reinforce traditional gender roles and will focus on the potential for empowering women in this context.

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Refugee/IDP Camps, Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Uganda

Year: 2014

‘Education Is My Mother and Father’: The ‘Invisible’ Women of Sudan


El Jack, Amani. 2012. “‘Education Is My Mother and Father’: The ‘Invisible’ Women of Sudan.” Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees 27 (2): 19-29.

Author: Amani El Jack


Education plays a significant role in informing the way people develop gender values, identities, relationships, and stereotypes. The education of refugees, however, takes place in multiple and diverse settings. Drawing on a decade of field research in Kenya, Sudan, Uganda, and North America, I examine the promises and challenges of education for refugees and argue that southern Sudanese refugee women and girls experience gendered and unequal access to education in protracted refugee sites such as the Kakuma refugee camp, as well as in resettled destinations such as Massachusetts. Many of these refugees, who are commonly referred to as the “lost boys and girls,” did not experience schooling in the context of a stable family life; that is why they often reiterate the Sudanese proverb, “Education is my mother and father.” I argue that tertiary education is crucial because it promotes self-reliance. It enables refugees, particularly women, to gain knowledge, voice, and skills which will give them access to better employment opportunities and earnings and thus enhance their equality and independence. Indeed, education provides a context within which to understand and make visible the changing nature of gender relationships of power.

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Refugee/IDP Camps, Education, Gender, Women, Girls, Gender Analysis, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality Regions: Africa, East Africa, Americas, North America Countries: Kenya, South Sudan, Uganda, United States of America

Year: 2012

Safety and Gender Issues in Rural Transport in Busia District, Uganda


Kwamusi, Paul. 2002. “Safety and Gender Issues in Rural Transport in Busia District, Uganda.” In Balancing the Load: Women, Gender and Transport, edited by Priyanthi Fernando and Gina Porter, 57-64. New York: Zed Books.

Authors: Priyanthi Fernando, Gina Porter


Few developing country research and development projects have adequately accounted for the intersection of gender, transport and mobility. This paper brings together recent evidence from rural and urban transport case studies in less developed countries. Women’s disadvantaged position in transport systems is apparent throughout. However, rather than simply use the studies to confirm general trends, this paper highlights both similarities and differences in women’s experiences in order to stress the need for locally-adapted gender-sensitive transport strategies. Once this local dimension is brought back in, “giving voice” to women in transport planning and practice does not have to remain a lofty theoretical principle. Crucial, practical advances can be made by improving the quality of household and user surveys and by collecting all data in a sex-disaggregated manner. These efforts should be complemented by comprehensive, locally-targeted gender analyses and action plans. Depending on local context, the provision of special transit services to women may be an appropriate intervention, but should not be seen as a permanent solution.

Topics: Development, Gender, Women, Infrastructure, Transportation Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Uganda

Year: 2002

Between Women's Rights and Men's Authority: Masculinity and Shifting Discourses of Gender Difference in Urban Uganda


Wyrod, Robert. 2008. “Between Women’s Rights and Men’s Authority: Masculinity and Shifting Discourses of Gender Difference in Urban Uganda.” Gender & Society 22 (6): 799–823. doi:10.1177/0891243208325888.

Author: Robert Wyrod


Across the African continent, women’s rights have become integral to international declarations, regional treaties, national legislation, and grassroots activism. Yet there is little research on how African men have understood these shifts and how African masculinities are implicated in such changes. Drawing on a year of ethnographic research in the Ugandan capital Kampala, this article investigates how ordinary men and women in Uganda understand women’ s rights and how their attitudes are tied to local conceptions of masculinity. The author argues that a new configuration of gender relations is evident in urban Uganda—one that accommodates some aspects of women’s rights while retaining previous notions of innate male authority. This article therefore illustrates the complex and often contradictory engagements with human rights that occur in local contexts and how such engagements are shaped by—and are shaping—gender relations, including conceptions of masculinity.

Keywords: women's rights, human rights, masculinity, africa, Uganda

Topics: Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Uganda

Year: 2008

Where Are the Girls?: Girls in Fighting Forces in Northern Uganda, Sierra Leone and Mozambique : Their Lives During and After War


McKay, Susan, and Dyan E. Mazurana. 2004. Where Are the Girls?: Girls in Fighting Forces in Northern Uganda, Sierra Leone and Mozambique: Their Lives During and After War. Montréal, Quebec: Rights & Democracy.

Authors: Susan McKay, Dyan E. Mazurana


By contributing to what is currently known about girls' distinct experiences in fighting forces, the presentation of findings from our study of girls in fighting forces is intended to assist the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), the United Nations, other donors, conflictaffected governments, and local, national and international governmental and non-governmental organizations in developing policies and programs to help protect and empower girls in situations of armed conflict and postwar reconstruction. In addition, this book should alert child protection advocates at all levels to the presence and experiences of girls in fighting forces and facilitate the design of responsive gender-based policy, advocacy and programs. This book presents findings from a research study entitled "Girls in Militaries, Paramilitaries, Militias, and Armed Opposition Groups" for which we were co-investigators. Our work was funded by CIDA's Child Protection Research Fund and implemented in partnership with Rights & Democracy. The study examined the presence and experiences of girls in fighting forces and groups within the context of three African armed conflicts: Mozambique (1976-1992), Northern Uganda (1986-present) and Sierra Leone (1991-2002). Fieldwork in these countries was conducted between September 2001 and October 2002. In addition to that study, this book includes findings of a parallel study, "Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration: The Experiences and Roles of Girls in Sierra Leone and Northern Uganda," by Dyan Mazurana and Khristopher Carlson, which was funded by the Policy Commission of Women Waging Peace. Fieldwork for this parallel study was conducted between September 2002 and February 2003. One purpose of this research was to gather and analyze data to better enhance the protection of war-affected children, in particular, girls in fighting forces. Within the context of Northern Uganda, Sierra Leone and Mozambique, girls in the fighting forces have suffered major human rights violations, especially gender-based violence. The rights of these girls are under threat from their own governments, armed opposition forces, and, occasionally, by members of their communities and families. At times, girls are discriminated against by local groups and officials, governments and international bodies that keep secret or are unwilling to recognize their presence, needs and rights during conflict, post-conflict, demobilization and social reintegration.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Child Soldiers, Gender, Girls, Post-Conflict Regions: Africa, East Africa, Southern Africa, West Africa Countries: Mozambique, Sierra Leone, Uganda

Year: 2004

Culture, Religion, and the Reintegration of Female Child Soldiers in Northern Uganda


Mæland, Bård, ed. 2010. Culture, Religion, and the Reintegration of Female Child Soldiers in Northern Uganda. New York: Peter Lang.

Author: Bård Mæland


The reintegration of thousands of formerly abducted children from the Lord's Resistance Army back to their families and communities in northern Uganda represents tremendous challenges. Culture, Religion, and the Reintegration of Female Child Soldiers in Northern Uganda examines cultural and religious complexities that surround young females who are now returning to the society of northern Uganda, often accompanied by their own children. Understanding the religiously and ritually rich Acholi and North Ugandan context and culture is important for the success of the ongoing reintegration. This collection consists of contributions from diverse fields, such as anthropology, psychology, moral philosophy, religious studies, and theology. (Amazon)

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Child Soldiers, Female Combatants, Gender, Girls, Religion Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Uganda

Year: 2010


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