The Global Promotion of Gender Equality - A Propaganda Approach


Alleyne, Mark DaCosta. 2004. "The Global Promotion of Gender Equality - A Propaganda Approach." Human Rights Review 5 (3): 103-16.

Author: Mark Da Costa Alleyne


This paper proposes a new way of measuring progress in international politics, an approach that focuses on the symbolic and ideological work of international organizations. Although such a strategy is not entirely new to the study of International Relations, it has not been a common, accessible way of assessing how well international organizations work to effect change. The more famous methods have been legalistic--investigations of how international organizations have created new international law in the issue-areas under investigation--and bureaucratic--studies of how international organizations create machinery to deal with the problems. But in a world where domestic and international discourse is more mediated than ever before by television, radio, the Internet, newspapers, and other means of mass communication, the argument here is that propaganda is a third arena that must be taken into account when exploring the work of international organizations. The international organizatio in question here is the United Nations, an the issue-area examined is gender equality, a topic that is also variously described as "women's rights," "women's issues," or the "women's movement." The paper explains first why the topic of the UN and women's rights is important, I then examine the propaganda role of the UN in the struggle for gender equality, and the paper concludes with a critical analysis of the UN's propaganda work in relation to this issue.

Topics: Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, International Law, International Organizations, Rights, Women's Rights

Year: 2004

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